My Summer Researching at GSE

Kristen Loughlin, GSE Masters in Education, 2024

This summer, I was fortunate to intern under Dr. Janine Remillard, Lara Condon, and their team of faculty and student researchers in the Penn Graduate School of Education. Our research explored factors related to early-career teacher development and retention, and specifically the development of responsive, ambitious mathematics pedagogy. The study followed participant teachers from a variety of schools, who participated in asynchronous professional development inquiry groups. Using video recordings and additional qualitative data sources, we studied teachers’ experiences in these inquiry groups and their development of responsive mathematics teaching practices.

As a research intern, my role involved coding qualitative data from focus groups, interviews, and video recordings of early-career educators. This was a valuable experience for me; as an educator myself, it allowed me to study the practices of other teachers and grow in my professional knowledge. As a researcher and M.S.Ed. student in the Graduate School of Education, I also gained experience in analysis of qualitative data, a skill I will benefit from as I continue my graduate studies. To complete this work, I also read and studied the literature regarding mathematics education, teacher professional development and retention, and responsive pedagogy. This supported the knowledge I have gained through my coursework and my own professional experience as an educator.

I also assisted with the development of a proposal for the 2024 American Educational Research Association (AERA) annual meeting. To develop this proposal, I helped generate preliminary findings from our data and collaborated with the team in drafting and revision. Our proposal addresses the theme of AERA’s 2024 annual conference, “Dismantling Racial Injustice and Constructing Educational Possibilities: A Call to Action,” by studying the factors necessary to retain and support teachers in urban schools.

In addition to the practical skills of data analysis and proposal development, I have been so fortunate to find mentorship and support from my research team. I am a part-time graduate student, and my full-time work is as a public school teacher. Under the guidance of my research team, I have gained skills to grow as an educator, advice to succeed as a graduate student, and support as I balance the two. Each member of the team has offered their support, kindness, and direction in these early years of my career, and I have sincerely appreciated the opportunity to learn under their expertise. I am fortunate to continue working with them in the Fall semester.

This is part of a series of posts by recipients of the 2023 GAPSA Summer Internship Funding Program that is coordinated by Penn Career Services. We’ve asked funding recipients to reflect on their summer experiences and talk about the industries in which they spent their summer. You can read the entire series here.

By Career Services
Career Services