Student News

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Spring 2014

  • Ph.D. Student Kreshnik Begolli presented with Lindsey Richland and Rebecca Frausel of the University of Chicago at the 26th Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science (ASP) in San Francisco, May 22-24. Their poster presentation was titled “Drawing Connections Under Pressure in the Mathematics Classroom: Linking Gestures Can Help.” The APS Convention brings together psychological researchers and academics to showcase the latest innovative research in psychological science, increase support for psychological research, and promote the use of science-based psychology in the development of public policy. Mr. Begolli is a fourth year doctoral student specializing in Learning, Cognition, and Development (LCD). His research interests include perceptual learning, language acquisition, and analogical reasoning. Poster Abstract 

  • Ph.D. Student Alma Zaragoza-Petty, a Eugene Cota Robles Scholar, has been awarded a President’s Dissertation Year Fellowship. This year UC Irvine awarded six fellowships to UC Irvine students in their final year of graduate study who plan to pursue teaching and research appointments. The award provides full resident tuition and fees, a yearly stipend, a travel stipend, and opportunities for additional research support. For her dissertation, Ms. Zaragoza-Petty is undertaking a year-long ethnography of an alternative charter high school in the Los Angeles area. Ms. Zaragoza-Petty is a fifth year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). Her research interests include race/ethnicity; gender, class, and educational achievement; and higher education access and equity. She is advised by Assistant Professor Tesha Sengupta-Irving.

  • Ph.D. Student Dan Flynn led the discussion group titled “Qualitative Data Analysis, Grounded Theory Virtual Analysis Team Workspaces” at the Association for Institutional Research’s Annual Conference AIR Forum 2014, in Orlando Florida, May 27-30. The Forum brings together over 2,000 higher education professionals working in institutional research, assessment, planning, and related postsecondary education fields. Mr. Flynn is a fifth year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). His research interests include higher education: assessment and evaluation, scholarship of teaching and learning, and faculty/professional development in STEM education. He is advised by Associate Professor Thad DominaAbstract for Discussion Group 

  • Ph.D. student Melissa Niiya authored with colleagues a paper published in the proceedings of the Special Interest Group on Computer-Human Interaction (SIGCHI) Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. Titled "Stress Multitasking in Everyday College Life: An Empirical Study of Online Activity," the paper was presented at the April conference in Toronto Canada. SIGCHI is a society for professionals, academic, and students who are interested in human-technology and human-computer interaction (HCI) Ms. Niiya, a second year doctoral student specializing in Language, Literacy, and Technology (LLT), studies digital literacy, diversity and equity, and interactive media and technology in education. She is advised by Professor Mark WarschauerAbstract

  • Ph.D. student Jacky Au is first author on the presentation "Improving Fluid Intelligence with Training on Working Memory: A Meta-Analysis," presented at the Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science, held May 22-26 in San Francisco. Additional authors included Ellen Sheehan, Ph.D. student Nancy Tsai, Ally Stegman (University of Maryland), Distinguished Professor Greg Duncan, Martin Buschkuehl, and Assistant Professor Susanne Jaeggi. Mr. Au and Ms. Tsai are first year doctoral students specializing in Learning, Cognition, and Development (LCD) and advised by Dr. Jaeggi. Mr. Au's research interests include cognitive training, working memory training, executive function, and neuroimaging. Nancy Tsai's researches development of executive functions, and development and evaluation of interventions to promote learning. Abstract

  • Ph.D. student Marcela Martinez received an honorable mention in the UC Irvine Faculty Mentor Program (FMP) competition. For her research design, Ms. Martinez described how she will be collecting detailed data about a district partners’ middle school mathematics placement procedures, as well as data on student characteristics, school experiences, and achievement in order to gain new insights into how educators sort students for middle school mathematics instruction and the consequences of these sorting decisions for student achievement. Ms. Martinez is a third year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). Her research interests include macro- and micro-level factors contributing to individual academic success. She is advised by Associate ProfessorThad Domina.

  • Ph.D. students Christa Mulker Greenfader and Elizabeth Miller have published in Early Childhood Research: "The Role of Access to Head Start and Quality Ratings for Spanish-Speaking Dual Language Learners’ (DLLs) Participation in Early Childhood Education." Ms. Greenfader, a third year doctoral student specializing in Learning, Cognition, and Development (LCD), is advised by Associate Professor Llane Brouillette. Ms. Miller, who is advised by Professor George Farkas, is in her third year of doctoral study pursuing a specialization in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). Abstract

  • Doctoral students and undergraduates from the School of Education volunteered as readers and book distributors during the 7th Annual Head Start Family Festival, held April 12 at the Sunkist Branch Library/Juarez Park in Anaheim. During the afternoon event, the students read to children, distributed over 5,000 books donated by Orange County community members, and participated in storytelling activities. The Festival provides educational information and resources to families, including free health screenings. Collaborative partners for 2014 included the Orange County Association for the Education of Young ChildrenAnaheim Public LibrariesPIMCO Foundation, and Illumination Foundation. School of Education participation was coordinated by Associate Professor Stephanie Reich, member of the Head Start Board of Directors, and doctoral students Joyce Lin and Chenoa Woods.

  • The School of Education's Multiple Subject Credential Program partnered with Davis Magnet Elementary School to host a panel session for graduating credential candidates. The afternoon session, facilitated by Multiple Subject Program Coordinator Susan Toma-Berge, included both responses by the five principals on the panel to questions posed by Dr. Toma and group breakout sessions that encouraged volunteers to role-play an interview session with the principal, who then provided feedback. The afternoon closed with a general question and answer session centered on job-seeking tips and advice. Read more.

  • 2014 Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) Symposium Presentations/Faculty Mentorship

  • Ph.D. student Cathy Tran has been awarded a National Academy of Education/Spencer Dissertation Fellowship for the 2014-2015 academic year. Ms. Tran, one of 30 awardees out of a pool of 400 applicants, will receive $25,000 to support her dissertation research. NAE/Spencer Fellowship are given to support individuals whose dissertations are judged to show potential for bringing fresh and constructive perspectives to the history, theory, or practice of formal or informal education anywhere in the world. Selection criteria include (a) importance of the research questions to education, (b) quality of the research approach, (c) feasibility of the work plan, (d) applicant's future potential as a researcher, and (e) applicant's interest in education. Ms. Tran's dissertation work is titled "Designing for Productive Persistence after Failure in Education." Dissertation Abstract 

  • Ph.D. student Jin Kyoung Hwang is first author on a publication in the International Journal of Bilingualism: "Differential Effects of a Systematic Vocabulary Intervention on Adolescent Language Minority Students with Varying Levels of English Proficiency." Additional authors are Joshua Lawrence, Elaine Mos, and Catherine Snow. Ms. Hwang's paper examines different performance profiles of students within a language minority population and investigates whether they respond similarly or differently to an academic vocabulary intervention, Word Generation. Ms. Hwang is a fourth year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). Her research interests include second language and literacy development, ELLs, reading difficulties, language assessment, and early intervention. Abstract

  • Ph.D. student Alma Zaragoza Petty has been selected for the 2014-2015 California Community College Internship Program (CCCIP). CCCIP offers graduate students aspiring to pursue an academic career in teaching, policy development, or administration the opportunity to learn about faculty life, governance, and teaching at one of the local community colleges. Selected MFA and PhD students with strong teaching backgrounds who meet the eligibility requirements are partnered with faculty at community colleges affiliated with UC Irvine for a period of two to three consecutive quarters. Ms. Zaragoza Petty will be mentored by Professor Martha Vargas at Santa Ana College. Ms. Zaragoza Petty is a fifth year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). She is advised by Assistant Professor Tesha Sengupta-Irving.

  • Ph.D. student Cathery Yeh was honored at the recent UC Irvine Celebration of Teaching Awards Ceremony for her 2013-2014 service as a Pedagogical Fellow. Each year, Pedagogical Fellows representing various Schools are selected by the Teaching, Learning, and Technology Center (TLTC) from a competitive pool of applicants. During the academic year, the Fellows assist in the training and mentoring of graduate students selected as Teaching Associates. Selection criteria for Pedagogical Fellows include the applicant's teaching evaluations, letters of recommendation, and demonstrated interest in pedagogy. Ms. Yeh, who is a fourth year doctoral student specializing in Learning, Cognition, and Development (LCD), was one of 17 Fellows honored at the April 12th ceremony for their contribution to quality undergraduate education.

  • Ph.D. student Melissa Niiya was third author on an article published with colleagues Professor Mark Warschauer, Assistant Professor Binbin Zheng (Michigan State University), and Professor George Farkas in Equity and Excellence in Education. Titled "Balancing the One-to-One Equation: Equity and Access in Three Laptop Programs," the article examined one-to-one laptop programs in Colorado, California, and Alabama. Findings revealed different outcomes among the programs, although all utilized low-cost netbook computers and open source software and shared common goals of enhancing digital participation and increasing educational equity. Ms. Niiya, a second year doctoral student specializing in Language, Literacy, and Technology (LLT), studies digital literacy, diversity and equity, and interactive media and technology in education. Abstract

  • Ph.D. student Tyler Watts was awarded the Dean's Prize during the recent Associated Graduate Students (AGS) Symposium on April 18th. Mr. Watts received $1,000 toward his doctoral research for his presentation titled "Do Kindergarten Common Core Standards Domains Predict Later Math Achievement?" The AGS Symposium is held yearly to highlight research that transcends disciplinary boundaries in an effort to find solutions to major societal problems or make groundbreaking discoveries. Graduate students are encouraged to present their research in a approachable ten-minute non-academic talk. Mr. Watts, a third year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC), researches early childhood intervention and the impact of income and social environment in later academic achievement. Abstract

  • Students from The Academy Charter High School Visit UC Irvine and Education Theme House
  • Ph.D. student Brandy Jenner presented at the Pacific Sociological Association's (PSA) 85th Annual Meeting held March 25-30 in Portland, Oregon. The 2014 meeting theme was “(Un)Changing Institutions:  Work, Family, and Gender in the New Economy.” Ms. Jenner's first presentation was titled "Concerted Cultivation and Accomplishment of Natural Growth in Parent-Child Interactions at IKEA" (Abstract). Her second presentation was titled "An Analysis of Military Enlistment, College Enrollment, and Labor Force Participation Among High School Graduates" (Abstract). Ms. Jenner, a second year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC), has research interests in higher education access, persistence, and equity; education policy; higher education program evaluation; student veterans; and for-profit colleges/universities.

  • Ph.D. student Chris Stillwell has been advised that his most recent book Language Teaching Insights from Other Fields: Sports, Arts, Design, and More has just been shortlisted for an award for Innovation in Teacher Resources by the British Council ELTons, sponsored by Cambridge English. The ELTons are the only international awards that recognize and celebrate innovation in English language teaching (ELT). They reward educational resources that help English language learners and teachers to achieve their goals. Mr. Stillwell is a second year doctoral student specializing in Learning, Cognition, and Development (LCD). His research interests include teacher learning, collaborative professional development, peer observation, and student self-transcription of language learning tasks.

  • Ph.D. student Kenneth Lee presented his poster, developed in collaboration with Distinguished Professor of Education Greg Duncan, at the Society for Research on Adolescence (SRA) Biennial Meeting held March 20-22 in Austin, Texas. The title of his presentation was "Links Between Average Middle Childhood Problem Behaviors and Adult Health." Abstract:Adult obesity has been linked to a number of negative adult emotions or behavior problems, such as anger, loneliness, boredom, and depression. Childhood obesity has been found to be a key predictor for obesity in adulthood. Since adult behavior problems are linked to adult health and childhood health is predictive of adult health, this paper examines the potential for significant associations between childhood behaviors and early adult BMI (body mass index).

  • Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) student Brenda Minjares has been awarded a Knowles Science Teaching Foundation (KSTF) Fellowship in support of her studies. Ms. Minjares is pursuing her Master of Arts with a Single Subject Teacher Credential in Physics. Knowles Fellowships are awarded to early career STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) teachers and provide financial and professional development support. As part of her professional support, Ms. Minjares will attend three meetings per year, work one-on-one with a KSTF program officer for teacher development, and participate in an online community. The Knowles Science Teaching Foundation was established in 1999 to increase the number of high-quality high school STEM teachers with the ultimate goal improving STEM education in the United States.

  • Ph.D. student NaYoung Hwang was sole author of her paper and poster presented at the Society for Research on Adolescence (SRA) Biennial Meeting held March 20-22 in Austin, Texas. SRA, founded in 1984, focuses on the theoretical, empirical, and policy research issues of adolescence. Current membership includes 1,300 educators representing 30 countries. The title of Ms. Hwang's presentation was "Does Paid Work Hinder Math Achievement?" Ms. Hwang, a second year doctoral student specializing in Language, Literacy, and Technology (LLT), is pursuing research interests in second language and literacy development, English Language Learners, reading difficulties, language assessment, and early intervention. She is advised by Associate Professor Thad DominaAbstract 

  • Ph.D. student Alma Zaragoza-Petty was sole author of her presentation at the Southern Sociological Society Meeting, April 2 through 4 in Charlotte, North Carolina. The conference theme was "Poverty, Social Policy, and the Role of Sociologists." Ms. Zaragoza-Petty's presentation was titled "Cuentos and Testimonios: Professional Socialization into Academia." Ms. Petty, a fourth year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC), is advised by Assistant Professor Tesha Sengupta-IrvingAbstract: Using Critical Race Theory andcuentos and testimonios as method, this study provides recommendations to graduate programs on how to manage the feelings of alienation and discrimination that scholars of color might experience as a result of being in an educational system that upholds color-blind ideologies based on White, middle-class culture and values.

  • Multiple Subject Candidates Marco Castillo and Megan Gibbs were two of the four bilingual candidates honored during the recent California Association for Bilingual Education (CABE) Conference held April 2 through 5 in Anaheim. CABE was established in 1976 to promote bilingual education and quality educational experiences for all students in California. Mr. Castillo received the Charles (Chuck) Acosta Teachership Award; Ms. Gibbs received the Alma Flor Ada Teachership Award. CABE awards $2,000 teacherships to support students pursuing a bilingual teaching credential. Article

  • Ph.D. students and faculty present at 2014 AERA

Winter 2014

  • Ph.D. student Elizabeth Miller is lead author on the article "Head Start Found More Beneficial for Children Whose Parents Provide Less Early Academic Stimulation." The article will appear in the next issue of Child Development, a publication of the Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD). Professors George FarkasDeborah Lowe Vandell, and Greg Duncan are co-authors. In drawing her conclusions, Ms. Miller analyzed data from the Head Start Impact Study, a nationally representative sample of nearly 5,000 newly entering eligible 3- and 4-year olds. Ms. Miller, a third year doctoral student advised by Professor George Farkas, is specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). Her research interests include socio-emotional development, parent-child interactions, early childhood care and education. SRCD Press Release

  • Ph.D. student Sarah Gilliland was presented with the Education Section “Adopt a Doc” Scholarship at the Combined Sections Meeting of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), held February 3-6 in Las Vegas. The APTA program awards one $2,500 scholarship per year to increase the number of doctorally prepared faculty teaching in Physical Therapy (PT) and Physical Therapy Assistant (PTA) education programs. The award provides financial support to current or former PT or PTA faculty members who are in the dissertation phase of their doctoral programs. Ms. Gilliland, who holds a Doctorate in Physical Therapy, has been an adjunct faculty member at Chapman University teaching human anatomy, biomechanics, kinesiology, complementary medicine and wellness, neurology, and assisting in a variety of laboratory courses since 2008.

  • Ph.D. student Marcela Martinez has been invited to present at the first annual Associated Graduate Students (AGS) Symposium to be held on April 18 at UC Irvine. The title of her talk is "Motivational Predictors of Math Course Persistence." The AGS Symposium provides a venue for outstanding graduate and professional student researchers to showcase how they are utilizing collaborative or innovative methods to tackle important problems in their field. AGS, a student-administered organization open to all UCI graduate students, advocates on behalf of graduate students interests at local, state, and national levels; funds graduate-student initiated events and projects; and provides conference support opportunities. Ms. Martinez, a Eugene Cota Robles Scholar, studies macro- and micro-level factors contributing to individual academic success. Abstract 

  • Ph.D. student Alma Zaragoza-Petty shared findings from her dissertation research during the Chican@ Studies Alliance conference at California State University, Fullerton's on March 1. The title of her presentation was “(De)Colonizing Futures: ‘At Risk’ Students.” In her research Ms. Zaragoza-Petty examined how the notion of "at risk" informs the practices and policies in a charter school environment. Ms. Zaragoza-Petty, a Eugene Cota Robles scholar, is a fourth year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). Her research interests include race/ethnicity, gender, class, and educational achievement, higher education access and equity. She is advised by Assistant Professor Tesha Sengupta-Irving.
    Abstract  

  • Ph.D. student Alex Lin is sole-author on the article "Examining Students’ Perceptions of Classroom Openness as a Predictor of Civic Knowledge: A Cross-National Analysis of 38 Countries," published in the February edition of Applied Developmental Science. Mr. Lin is entering his fifth year of the UCI doctoral program specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC). His research interests include positive youth development, civic education, and comparative education. Prior to joining the UC Irvine Ph.D. program, Mr. Lin was a researcher for an international relief program called Equal Access that produces educational media programming for women and children living in rural and remote areas of Afghanistan, Nepal, India, Laos, and Cambodia. Mr. Lin also completed the UCI credential program and taught in public schools across Japan. Abstract

  • Ph.D. student Alejandra Albarran has published with Associate Professor Stephanie Reich in Infant and Child Development: "Using Baby Books to Improve New Mothers' Self-Efficacy (MSE) and Improve Toddler Language Development." Their article explores whether educational books, embedded with information about typical child development and optimal parenting, increase MSE for women over the first year and a half of motherhood and whether these increases result in better language skills for children at 18 months of age. In their findings, hierarchical linear model analyses show that (a) MSE starts high and remains high, (b) that providing educational books further increases the development of MSE, and (c) that increases in MSE have a positive impact on children's language skills, as does providing books, irrespective of educational content. 

  • Ph.D. student Jennifer Sun is presenting with Associate Professor Elizabeth van Es at the 2014 Annual Conference of Association for Mathematics Teacher Educators (AMTE) Symposium: Teacher-Capture Video: Tools, Opportunities, and Challenges. Ms. Sun and Dr. van Es draw on their experiences using video for teacher education to demonstrate assorted tools for video capture and video analysis, including  Edthena, a video annotation tool in one of the CalTeach courses. Additionally, they discuss opportunities and challenges for use of video in teacher education, present research findings related to teacher-captured video as a focus for teacher education and professional development, and identify issues for future research. Ms. Sun is a third year doctoral student specializing in Learning, Cognition, and Development (LCD).

  • Ph.D. student Janet Mercado and Associate Professor Elizabeth van Es are presenting at the 2014 Annual Conference of Association for Mathematics Teacher Educators Conference in Irvine. During their presentation, titled "Noticing for Equitable Mathematics Teaching," Ms. Mercado and Dr. van Es invite teacher participants of a research study on noticing for equitable mathematics to share with the attendees how they notice equity in teaching and how their noticing reflects their commitments and dispositions to equitable mathematics instruction. Following exploration of preliminary findings from their study of teacher noticing during instruction, the researchers discuss how their diverse ways of noticing are reflected in the existing framework and how their noticing challenges existing notions of noticing for equitable teaching to expand understanding of this construct for teaching.

  • Ph.D. student Cathey Yeh, who is specializing in Learning, Cognition, and Devleopment (LCD), is presenting with Lecturers Valerie Henry and Jody Guarino at the 2014 Annual Conference of Association for Mathematics Teacher Educators (AMTE) Conference in Irvine. The title of their presentation is "Designs, Tools, and Implications for Developing Teachers' Noticing of Student Thinking." During their session the presenters will discuss three technology-enhanced environments for helping pre-service elementary and secondary mathematics teachers learn to notice student thinking: video-based instructional tasks for elementary and secondary pre-service mathematics teachers to develop noticing skills and a week-long instructional unit with the course blog highlighting the teacher's attention to student thinking. Abstract

  • Fourth year Ph.D. student Cathery Yeh is one of eight recipients selected from a nation-wide pool of 225 highly-qualified applicants for the 2014 K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders AwardThe Award recognizes graduate students who show exemplary promise as future leaders of higher education, who demonstrate a commitment to developing academic and civic responsibility in themselves and others, and whose work reflects a strong emphasis on teaching and learning. As stated by Carol Geary Schneider, Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) President, “They represent the finest in the new generation of faculty who will teach and lead higher education in the next decades." Ms. Yeh's research interests include diversity and equity in education, teacher learning, pre-service mathematics teacher development, and teacher professional development. 

  • Ph.D. student Daniel Flynn is the sole author on the article “Baccalaureate Attainment of College Students at 4-Year Institutions as a Function of Student Engagement Behaviors: Social and Academic Engagement Behaviors Matter.” The article, currently published online at Research in Higher Education’s Online First, is in press for publication in Research in Higher Education. Mr. Flynn, a fifth year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC), is advised by Associate Professor Thad Domina. Mr. Flynn’s research interests include student engagement, STEM pedagogy, postsecondary instructional and faculty development and Technological-Pedagogical-Content- Knowledge. Abstract

  • Ph.D. students Bianca Cung and Suhang Jiang presented with Professor Mark Warshauer at the MOOC (Mass Open Online Courses) Research Initiative Conference in Arlington, Texas, on December 6, 2013. Their presentation was titled "Peer Assessment and Academic Achievement in a Gateway MOOC.” The conference brought together researchers from around the world investigating MOOCs, including the grantees of the MOOC Research Initiative funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Ms. Cung and Ms. Jiang, first year doctoral students specializing in Language, Literacy, and Technology (LLT), are advised by Professor Warschauer. Ms. Cung’s research interests include media and technology for education, international education, diversity and equity, STEM, and second language acquisition. Abstract

  • Ph.D. student Elizabeth Miller has published with Professor Mark Warshauer in Learning, Media, and Technology: "Young Children and e-Reading: Research to Date and Questions for the Future." Their paper reviews research on e-reading, in both the pre-tablet and tablet eras, within the context of what is known more generally about literacy development. By proposing topics for future research and discussing methodological issues related to the investigation of these topics, the researchers' goal is to spark further discussion about how to study young children's literacy development in the emerging e-reading era. Ms. Miller, a third year doctoral student specializing in Educational Policy and Social Context (EPSC), is advised by Professor George Farkas. Her research interests include socio-emotional development, parent-child interactions, and early childhood care and education.