Melissa Roderick

Melissa Roderick is the Hermon Dunlap Smith Professor at the School of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago and a senior director at the UChicago Consortium. Roderick is an expert in urban school reform, high school reform, high-stakes testing, minority adolescent development, and school transitions. Her work has focused attention on the transition to high school as a critical point in students’ school careers and her new work examines the transition to college among Chicago Public School (CPS) students. In prior work, she led a multi-year evaluation of Chicago's initiative to end social promotion and has conducted research on school dropout, grade retention, and the effects of summer programs. Roderick is an expert in mixing qualitative and quantitative methods in evaluation. Her new study focuses on understanding the relationship between students' high school careers and preparation, their college selection choices and their post-secondary outcomes through linked quantitative and qualitative research. In this joint project with CPS, Roderick is assisting CPS in tracking successive cohorts of Chicago students and building new indicators through analysis of high school transcripts and surveys of students and teachers to assess the preparation of CPS graduates for college. She is concurrently leading a qualitative study that is following over 100 juniors from three Chicago high schools from the eleventh grade to two years after graduation and examining differences in the educational demands of their classroom environments through a linked study of high school and college classrooms. From 2001 to 2003, Roderick joined the administration of CPS to establish a new Department of Planning and Development. At SSA, Roderick is the faculty director of a new program in community schools and youth development. She is a founding board member and currently serves as the chair of the board of North Lawndale College Preparatory Charter High School. Roderick has a PhD from the Committee on Public Policy from Harvard University, a master's degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and an AB from Bowdoin College.

All Publications

Title Type Date Sort ascending
From High School to the Future From High School to the Future

Delivering on the Dream of College Graduation

Working Paper Nov 2018
Preview Not AvailableThe College Match Indicator

Linking Research to Practice

Book Sep 2016
Preventable Failure: Improvements in Long-Term Outcomes When High Schools Focused on the Ninth Grade Year: Research Summary Preventable Failure

Improvements in Long-Term Outcomes When High Schools Focused on the Ninth Grade Year

Report Apr 2014
Readiness for College: The Role of Noncognitive Factors and Context Readiness for College

The Role of Noncognitive Factors and Context

Article Nov 2013
From High School to the Future: The Challenge of Senior Year in Chicago Public Schools From High School to the Future

The Challenge of Senior Year in Chicago Public Schools

Report Feb 2013
Teaching Adolescents to Become Learners: The Role of Noncognitive Factors in Shaping School Performance Teaching Adolescents to Become Learners

The Role of Noncognitive Factors in Shaping School Performance

Literature Review Jun 2012
Working to My Potential: The Postsecondary Experiences of CPS Students in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme Working to My Potential

The Postsecondary Experiences of CPS Students in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

Report Mar 2012
Potholes on the Road to College:  High School Effects in Shaping Urban Students' Participation in College Application, Four-year College Enrollment, and College Match Potholes on the Road to College

High School Effects in Shaping Urban Students' Participation in College Application, Four-year College Enrollment, and College Match

Article Jul 2011
From High School to the Future: Making Hard Work Pay Off From High School to the Future

Making Hard Work Pay Off

Report Apr 2009
College Readiness for All: The Challenge for Urban High Schools College Readiness for All

The Challenge for Urban High Schools

Article Apr 2009
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