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Faculty Headshots - onsite @ Fall faculty assembly. Peabody College Vanderbilt University Photo: Anne Rayner;VU
Vanderbilt University
Photo: Anne Rayner;VU


Marisa Cannata is an Associate Professor of the Practice in education policy and school reform in the Department of Leadership, Policy, and Organizations at Vanderbilt University and Director of the National Center on Scaling Up Effective Schools. Dr. Cannata’s research focuses on the organizational and social conditions that shape the work experiences of teachers. This includes research on teacher hiring and career decisions, working conditions and professional climate, and teacher evaluation, as well as teacher participation and leadership in the implementation of school reform. Dr. Cannata’s research also attends to differences in these work experiences across charter and traditional public schools. Dr. Cannata has experience overseeing large mixed-method research projects in schools and districts.  She is the co-author of Steps to Schoolwide Success: Systemic Practices for Connecting Social and Academic Emotional Learning, and co-editor of School Choice and School Improvement, published by Harvard Education Press, and Mapping the High School Reform Landscape, a Yearbook of Teachers College Record.  Dr. Cannata has a Ph.D. in Educational Policy from Michigan State University.


Research Highlights:

Learn about my work on developing collaborative partnerships to rethink how to Rutledge_Schoolwide_FINALscale and sustain innovations in high schools at the National Center on Scaling Up Effective Schools. Read our book about this partnership and developing personalization for academic and social emotional learning in high schools.

Watch a video on how NCSU works with partner districts to build capacity and local commitment.

Watch a video on what we’ve learned through NCSU.

Learn about my work on how principals use teacher effectiveness data for talent management decisions.

Learn about best practices for starting a charter school. This research was funded by the State Charter Schools Commission of Georgia to provide guidance on those starting new charter schools. Starting_Strong_final


Media Mentions:

Listen to me talk about NCSU’s research on developing student ownership and responsibility.

Read about how my research fits into other research on teacher hiring.

Read an article about charter schools and how they may be coming to Kentucky.