Deborah's Biography

Research Associate, Département des Sciences Sociales, Institut Battelle, Geneva, Switzerland, 1972-1973
Special Assistant to the Deputy Director of the Office of Child Development, DHEW, Washington, D.C., Summer 1976
Research Associate, Yale Law School, 1976-1977
Congressional Science Fellow, Society for Research in Child Development, Office of Senator Bill Bradley, 1983-1984
Professor, Graduate School of Education, University of California, Los Angeles, 1977-2000
Co-Director: NIMH Training Program in Applied Human Development
Director: Corinne Seeds University Elementary School (UCLA Laboratory School)
Director: Urban Education Studies Center
Dean: Graduate School of Education, Stanford University, 2001-2011 and 2014-2015
Professor of Education, 2011 - present

Stanford University
School of Education
485 Lasuen Mall,
Stanford, CA 94305-3096

Deborah Stipek is Professor of Education and (by courtesy) Psychology at Stanford University. Her scholarship concerns instructional effects on children’s achievement motivation and early childhood education. She is particularly concerned about policies and practices that afford children of color and children living in poverty the educational advantages of their more affluent peers. Her current focus is on strategies to develop young children’s basic academic skills while supporting their social-emotional development and motivation. In addition to her scholarship, she was an SRCD Fellow, working in the office of Senator Bill Bradley; she served for five years on the Board on Children, Youth, and Families of the National Academy of Sciences, and is a member of the National Academy of Education. Dr. Stipek served 10 of her 23 years at UCLA as Director of the Corinne Seeds University Elementary School and the Urban Education Studies Center. She joined the Stanford Graduate School of Education as Dean in January 2001, stepped down in 2011 and returned in 2014.


University of Washington, B.S., summa cum laude, 1972 (Psychology)

Universite d'Aix-en-Provence, Avignon, France, 1969-1970 (French literature, philosophy, political science)

University de Geneve, Ecole de Psychologie et des Sciences de l'Education, Geneva, Switzerland, Autumn 1972 (Psychology/Epistemology)

Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, 1973-1977, Ph.D., 1977 (Developmental Psychology)

  • AERA Review of Research Award, 1983
  • SRCD Congressional Science Fellowship, 1983-84
  • Haytin Award for Outstanding Research on Learning and Achievement, 1988
  • National Academy of Science: Board on Children, Youth, and Families
  • Member, MacArthur Foundation: Network on Pathways Through Middle Childhood
  • Chair, MacArthur Foundation Network on Teaching and Learning, 2002-2005
  • Board member, Leadership Public Schools
  • Board member, Children’s Health Council
  • Chair, National Research Council Committee on Increasing High School Students’ engagement and Motivation to Learn
  • Chair, National Institute for Early Education Research
  • National Academy of Education
  • Fellow, American Educational Research Association
  • 2012 Silicon Valley Women of Influence
Service/Advisory Boards/Other: 

Membership in Professional and Honorary Societies

  • Phi Beta Kappa
  • Society for Research in Child Development
  • American Educational Research Association
  • National Academy of Education
  • National Associate of the National Academy of Sciences

Board Memberships

  • CK-12
  • High Scope
  • ALearn
  • Bring me a Book
  • Common Sense Media
  • Jumpstart Early Education Council