Doctoral Fellowship in Education Research


The University of Chicago is home to an exciting intellectual environment for the study of education sciences in which a diverse community of students, faculty and practitioners are collaborating to conduct research and design practices relevant to solving urgent national problems in education. Education Sciences at the University comprise an expanding group of world-class faculty and practitioners from disciplines, professional schools and centers across the University. The interdisciplinary Committee on Education, with its close affiliation with the University’s Urban Education Institute and UChicago STEM Education, form the cornerstone for this work and place the University of Chicago in an ideal position to effectively codevelop research and practice.

As a part of this commitment to interdisciplinary educational training, the Committee on Education is pleased to offer a fellowship program to support students interested in pursuing educational research while they are training for a doctoral degree in a related discipline. Participating departments in the Division of the Social Sciences include the Departments of Comparative Human Development, Economics, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology. PhD students in the Harris School and the School of Social Service Administration are also invited to apply for this fellowship. In addition to their departmental stipend, recipients of this fellowship will receive additional funds to support research activities related to education. Fellows can also receive additional support for research and travel from the Successful Pathways program.

Each pre-doctoral fellow earns a PhD in a social science discipline or from a professional school while participating in a common program of courses, workshops, and a 2-year apprenticeship conducting research in a school setting. This set of experiences enables each to contribute particular expertise to answering questions related to schooling from the standpoint of his or her respective discipline: How do we define and measure the skills young people need to become productive later in life? What is the relationship between academic and non-academic skills? What role does social and emotional regulation play in shaping learning? How should instruction be organized? What forms should school leadership and governance take to optimize student learning? How can we recruit and retain an effective teacher work force?

Participating students select among a wide range of ongoing research projects and multiple sites of practice, with access to the nation’s best administrative data system on urban schools and youth development. These sites include UEI and the UChicago Consortium on School Research, the Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center, the TMW Center for Early Learning + Public Health, and the Urban Labs. Our aim is to produce rigorous and usable research on how schooling can be improved to provide the skills, dispositions and information young people need to make a successful transition into the labor market; and by engaging PhD students deeply in carrying out this research, to enable those fellows to become independent scholars who can effectively design rigorous social science research in education, collect and analyze relevant data, and communicate results clearly to a range of audiences.

Our Committee on Education Fellows program builds upon prior, highly successful programs funded by a federal grant from the Institute of Education Sciences. The IES Program at the University of Chicago began in 2005, and provided funding cohorts of graduate students from 2005-2016. The time frame of this federal grant having now elapsed, the Committee on Education is pleased to continue providing the additional funding and research opportunities that this grant made possible via the Committee on Education fellowship described above.

How Are Fellows Selected?

University of Chicago students already enrolled in PhD programs in participating departments are nominated by faculty to be a part of this fellowship program. 

    Program Contacts:

    Program Contact:

    Lisa Rosen, Senior Lecturer and Associate Director of the Committee on Education

    Program Director:

    Stephen Raudenbush, Lewis-Sebring Distinguished Service Professor of Sociology and Chair, Committee on Education, University of Chicago,

    Program Co-Director:
    Elaine Allensworth, Director of the Chicago Consortium for School Research, Urban Education Institute, University of Chicago,