Dr. Deborah Lowe Vandell is Professor of Education at the University of California, Irvine, where she previously served as the Founding Dean of the School of Education. An author of more than 150 articles and three books, Professor Vandell’s research focuses on the effects of developmental contexts (early child care, K-12 schools, after-school programs, families) on children’s social, behavioral, and academic functioning. As one of the principal investigators with the NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development, she has conducted an intensive study of 1300 children from birth through age 26 years. This work is viewed by many social scientists as one of the most comprehensive studies of the short-term and long-term effects of early education programs, schooling, and the family on children’s development. Other research projects have studied the effects of after-school programs, extracurricular activities, and unsupervised time on academic and social outcomes. This work has underscored the importance of out-of-school time as a key factor in children’s success at school. Professor Vandell started her career as an elementary school teacher while earning her master’s degree in education at Harvard University and later received a Ph.D. in Psychology from Boston University. She has been elected to the National Academy of Education and to the Governing Council for the Society for Research in Child Development. She is a Fellow of the American Educational Research Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Psychological Society. She is the president-elect of Division 7 (Developmental Psychology) of the American Psychological Association. She has served on numerous advisory boards for the National Academy of Sciences, the National Institutes of Health, and the U.S. Department of Education.
Professor Deborah Vandell summarizes her ongoing research for BOLD (Blog on Learning & Development): “Two Crucial Factors in Children’s Long-Term Development.”