F. Chris Curran, Ph.D.

Director – Educational Leadership & Policy

Research Interests:
Education Policy, School Safety, Early Childhood Education, Policy Analysis, Applied Data Science, Disparities in Educational Outcomes

Chris Curran is an Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy, Section Head and Coordinator of the Educational Leadership and Policy Program Area, and Director of the Education Policy Research Center at the University of Florida’s College of Education. Prior to joining the University of Florida, he was an Assistant Professor of Public Policy at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) School of Public Policy. He received his Ph.D. in Leadership and Policy Studies with a doctoral minor in quantitative methods from Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College in 2015 and holds a masters in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Mississippi. He also holds a Specialization Certificate in Data Science.

Dr. Curran’s research applies quantitative causal inference techniques, mixed methodologies, and data science approaches to the study of education policy, with a goal of improving outcomes for all students. In particular, his recent work has focused on the ways that school discipline and safety contribute to educational outcomes and how such policies can differentially impact subgroups of students. He also has an active body of research that examines early childhood education, particularly in science. His work has been supported by over $3 million in external grants from the National Institute of Justice, National Science Foundation, the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance, the American Educational Research Association, the National Academy of Education and Spencer Foundation, among others. His work has been published in outlets including Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, Educational Researcher, AERA Open, the American Educational Research Journal, and Education Finance and Policy. His work has also been featured in a number of media outlets including NPR, Politico, Education Week, and The Atlantic. He is an active public scholar and regular contributor to The Conversation. Prior to graduate school, Dr. Curran was a middle school science teacher and department chair.