Emily Howe

This is my second year in the Learning Sciences and Policy program. 

I decided to pursue a PhD based on my experiences teaching high school in the NYC public schools for five years. Along with being inspired by the diverse experiences and views of the students, I also had the privilege of working with mindful and social-justice oriented colleagues who were always striving to design and implement curriculums that would both interest and empower our students. Working within the large bureaucracy of the NYC Department of Education, however, led me to skeptical of education policy as well as frustated with the systematic inequity in education (and American society at large). While seemingly simple, education is an immensely complex social enterprise. My teaching experience has greatly shaped my understanding of how economic, political, and social factors all contribute to the history and future of education. 

One of my main reasearch goals is to help bridge the gap between academia, policy, and practitioners. I believe research and policy should be informed by the knowledge teachers and administrators have and to solve problems of practice that are salient to them. Thus, I am curious as to the organizational obstacles that exist in creating a more mutualistic relationship between educational researchers and practitioners, especially within Title I and other underserved schools. I am currently studying teachers' epistemologies and student argument writing. Two of my other interests include: philosophical discourse (how it can be used in primary and secondary education to build logical thinking skills and a critical consciousness), and interdisciplinary skill instruction and teacher collaboration (as a means to improve students' reading, writing, and critical thinking).

Prior to coming to Pittsburgh, I received my BA in Environmental Studies and Philosophy from the University of Chicago and my M.S.Ed. from Long Island University Brooklyn through a partnership with the NYC Teaching Fellows.