Nine Curry Faculty Named in 2016 Edu-Scholar Rankings, 2 In The Top 20


Once again, two elite members of the Curry School faculty were named among the top 20 education scholars influencing public policy. Carol Tomlinson (16), William Clay Parrish Jr. Professor, and Curry School Dean Bob Pianta (20) were named to the RHSU Edu-Scholar Public Influence Rankings recognizing faculty members who “contribute most substantially to public debates about education.”  The annual rankings are published in Education Week.

Pianta spent much of 2015 discussing the responsibility of education scholars have to take the lead in engaging stakeholders outside of walls of higher education. In January 2015, he penned an op-ed on the idea, Academics Can’t Shy Away From Public Role. In it he wrote the following:

Our work in the academy should engage the public square. To back away would be to cede influence in an even larger effort: to advance the understanding of the American public to make informed decisions about the education of its citizenry.

Fredrick Hess, creator of the rankings, agrees with the value of education scholars participating in the public dialogue.

“One small way to encourage academics to step into the fray and revisit academic norms is, I think, by doing more to recognize and value those scholars who engage in public discourse,” explains Hess.

The culture of taking this responsibility seriously is seen throughout the Curry School, as evidenced by the number of other scholars on this year’s rankings.

Returning influential scholars included a host from the Curry School’s Education Policy program.  Professor of education policy, Jim Wyckoff (161), Assistant Professor Benjamin Castleman (159), Assistant Professor Daphna Bassok (187), and Professor Sarah Turner (143) were recognized for their work this year.

Educational leadership scholar, Michelle Young, professor and director of the University Council for Educational Administration, was ranked 145.

The higher education program was represented on the list as Associate Professor and Associate Director of the Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education at the Curry School Josipa Roksa was recognized for her work this year as she was placed in the number 104th slot.

Rounding out the group of nine U.Va. faculty making the list was Daniel Willingham, professor of psychology in the College of Arts & Sciences and a scholar affiliated with Curry’s Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning (23).