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Christina J. Weiland

Associate Professor, Marsal Family School of Education


(734) 615-1530


Room 4039
610 E. University Ave.
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1259

Christina Weiland is an associate professor at the Marsal Family School of Education at the University of Michigan and (by courtesy) the Ford School of Public Policy, where she is affiliated with the Educational Studies department and the Combined Program in Psychology and Education program. She serves as co-Director of the Education Policy Initiative at the Ford School of Public Policy and as Director of the University of Michigan’s Predoctoral Training Program in Causal Inference in Education Policy Research. She is also a Senior Research Fellow at the Learning Policy Institute and a Non-Resident Fellow at the Urban Institute.

Dr. Weiland’s research focuses on the effects of early childhood interventions and public policies on children’s development, especially on children from families with low-incomes. She is particularly interested in the active ingredients that drive children’s gains in successful, at-scale public preschool programs. She is also interested in quantitative research methods, educational measurement, and developmental processes research. Her work is also characterized by strong, long-standing research collaborations with practitioners, particularly the Boston Public Schools Department of Early Childhood.

Her current projects include a longitudinal descriptive study of the preschool to fifth grade experiences of Boston Public School students as part of the Institute of Education Sciences’ Early Learning Network. She is also PI of a large-scale, Institute of Education Sciences-funded study of the longitudinal impacts of the Boston Public Schools prekindergarten into early adulthood, as well as an implementation study of Boston’s scale out to community-based preschool programs.  In partnership with the Michigan Department of Education, she leads (with Brian Jacob) an evaluation of Michigan’s Transitional Kindergarten program. She also serves as co-PI on a lottery-based evaluation of the DC UPK program.

Her work has been recognized with a 2018 Association for Education Finance and Policy Early Career Award, a 2014 National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow, and a 2013 Best Dissertation Award from the Society for Research in Child Development.  Her work has been generously funded by the U.S. Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Smith-Richardson Foundation, the Heising-Simons Foundation, the Foundation for Child Development, the Foundation for Child Development, Chile’s Ministry of Education, and the University of Michigan. She has presented her work on preschool to the Seattle City Council, to senior U.S. Department of Education officials, and at a Congressional briefing, at U.S. House Education and the Workforce Committee and U.S. Senate HELP Committee briefing, among others.

She holds an EdD (quantitative policy analysis in education) and a MA from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a BA from Dartmouth College.


Number Course Name Location Days
EDUC 311
Home, School & Community: Realities, Interventions and Policies for Young Children in Poverty

This course takes an ecological perspective on the experiences of young children in poverty (ages 0-8) in the U.S. and examines the educational, social, and economic services and policies meant to support them and their families.

EDUC 712
Causal Inference in Education Policy Research: Preschool, Elementary and Secondary (PUBPOL 712)

This course focuses on rigorous evaluation of policies and interventions intended to support children's early learning and success in k-12. Evaluations will be discussed in the context of the current and historical landscape. Specific topics will include theories across developmental psychology and economics, school accountability, teacher-focused policies, and digital learning.

Selected Publications

"Quantifying and predicting variation in the medium-term effects of an oversubscribed prekindergarten program."

Unterman, R., & Weiland, C. (In press). Journal of Research in Educational Effectiveness.

"The efficacy of text-based mentoring for postpartum mothers: A pilot study."

Weiland, C., Page, L., Musaddiq, T., Martin, E., & Homitsky, S. (In press). Maternal and Child Health Journal.

"Addressing missing data due to COVID-19: Two early childhood case studies."

Feller, A., Connors, M., Weiland, C., Easton, J.Q., Ehrlich, S.B., Francis, J., Kabourek, S. Leyva, D., Shapiro, A., & Yeomans-Maldonado, G. (In press). Journal of Research in Educational Effectiveness.

"Going the distance: Exploring variation in access to high-quality PreK by geographic proximity, race/ethnicity, family income, and home language."

McCormick, M., Pralica, M., Hsueh, J., Weiland, C., Weissman, A., Xia, S., Shapiro, A., MacDowell, C. Maves, S., Taylor, A., & Sachs, J. (2023). AERA Open.

"Enrollment in Pre-K and children’s social-emotional and executive functioning skills: To what extent are associations sustained across time?"

Moffett, L., Weissman, A., McCormick, M., Weiland, C., Hsueh, J., Snow, C., & Sachs, J. (2023). Journal of Educational Psychology.

"Learning experiences vary across young children in the same classroom: Evidence from the Individualizing Student Instruction Measure in the Boston Public Schools."

Weiland, C., Moffett, L., Guerrero Rosada, P., Weissman, A., Zhang, K., Maier, M., Snow, C., McCormick, M., & Hsueh, J. (2023). Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 63, 313-326.

"Does kindergarten instruction matter for sustaining the PreK boost? Evidence from individual- and classroom-level survey and observational data."

McCormick, M., Pralica, M., Weiland, C., Hsueh, J., Moffett, L., Guerrero-Rosada, P., Weissman, A., Zhang, K., Snow, C., Maier, M., Davies, E., Taylor, A., & Sachs, J. (2022). Developmental Psychology. doi: 10.1037/dev0001358

"Covid-19 and early childhood programs: Risks and opportunities for building longitudinal evidence."

Weiland, C., & Morris, P. (2022). Child Development Perspectives, 16, 76-81.

"Content-rich instruction and cognitive demand in PreK: Using systematic observations to predict child gains."

McCormick, M., Maier, M., Xia, S., Weiland, C., Morales, A., Boni, M., Tonachel, M., Sachs, J., & Snow, C. (2022). Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 60, 96-109.

"A strengths-based, culturally responsive family intervention improves Latino kindergarteners’ vocabulary and approaches to learning."

Leyva, D., Weiland, C., Shapiro, A., & Yeomans-Maldonado, G. (2022). Child Development, 93, 451-467 (working paper version here: https://www.edworkingpapers.com/ai21-349).

"Positive impacts of a strengths-based family program on Latino Kindergarteners’ narrative language abilities."

Leyva, D., Shapiro, A., Yeomans-Maldonado, G., Weiland, C., & Leech, K. (2021). Developmental Psychology, 58.

"For whom, where, and when? Challenges and opportunities in exploring cross-site treatment impact variation and why developmentalists should care."

Sabol, T., McCoy, D., Gonzalez, K., Miratrix, L., Hedges, L., Spybrook, J., & Weiland, C. (2021). Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 58, 14-26.

"“Fast response” research to address timely practice and policy questions."

Weiland, C., Sachs, J., McCormick, M., Hsueh, H., & Snow, C. (2021). Future of Children, 31, 75-96.

"Is skill type the key to the PreK fadeout puzzle? Differential associations between enrollment in PreK and constrained and unconstrained skills across kindergarten."

McCormick, M., Weiland, C., Hsueh, J., Pralica, M., Weissman, A., Moffett, L., Snow, C., & Sachs, J. (2021). Child Development, 92, 599-620.

"The kindergarten hotspot: Literacy skill convergence between Boston Prekindergarten enrollees and non-enrollees."

Weiland, C., Unterman, R., & Shapiro, A. (2021). Child Development, 92, 600-608.

"Costs of the Boston Public Prekindergarten Program."

Kabay, S., Weiland, C., & Yoshikawa, H. (2020). Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness, 13, 574-600.

"Null relations between CLASS scores and gains in children's language, math, and executive function skills: A replication and extension study."

Guerrero Rosada, P., Weiland, C., McCormick, M., Hsueh, J., Sachs, J., Snow, C., & Maier, M. (2020). Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 54, 1-12.

"The effects of enrolling in oversubscribed prekindergarten programs through third grade."

Weiland, C., Unterman, R., Shapiro, A., Staszak, S., Rochester, S., & Martin, E. (2020). Child Development, 5, 1401-1422.

"If you offer it, will they come? Patterns of application behavior in a universal preschool context."

Shapiro, A., Martin, E., Weiland, C., & Unterman, R. (2019). AERA Open, 5, Special Issue, “The Role of Place, Geography, and Geographical Information Systems (GIS) in Educational Research.”

"What’s in a definition? The how and when of special education subgroup analysis in preschool evaluations."

Shapiro, A., & Weiland, C. (2019). Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 41, 145-163.

"New findings on impact variation from the Head Start Impart Study: Informing the scale-up of early childhood programs."

Morris, P., Connors, M., Friedman-Krauss, McCoy, D., Weiland, C., Feller, A., Page, L., Bloom, H., & Yoshikawa, H. (2018). AERA Open.

"Preschool curricula and professional development features for getting to high-quality implementation at scale: A comparative review across five trials."

Weiland, C., McCormick, M., Mattera, M., Maier, M., & Morris, P. (2018). AERA Open.

"Cradle to Kindergarten: A new plan to combat inequality"

Chaudry, A., Morrissey, T., Weiland, C., & Yoshikawa, H. (2017). New York, NY: Russell Sage.

"Natural opportunity? Low-income parents’ responses to their children’s impending kindergarten entry."

Weiland, C., Charles McCoy, D., Grace, E., & Oh Park, S. (2017). AERA Open, 3(1).

"Impacts of the Boston prekindergarten program on the school readiness of young children with special needs."

Weiland, C. (2016). Developmental Psychology, 52(11), 1763.

"A road map to high-quality public programs at scale."

Weiland, C. (2016). Launching Preschool 2.0: Behavioral Science & Policy, 2(1), 37-46.

"When does preschool matter?"

Yoshikawa, H., Weiland, C., & Brooks-Gunn, J. (2016). The Future of Children, 26(2), 21-35.

"Testing for moderation of impact of the UBC preschool intervention by student absenteeism."

Arbour, M.C., Yoshikawa, H., Murnane, R., Weiland, C., Barata, M.C., & Snow C.E. (2016). Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness. DOI: 10.1080/19345747.2015.1109013

"Opening the blackbox: Intervention fidelity in a randomized trial of a preschool teacher professional development program in Chile.”

Mendive, S., Weiland, C., Yoshikawa, H., & Snow, C.  (In press).  Journal of Educational Psychology. 

"Factor structure and predictive validity of the CLASS in prekindergarten: A cross-cultural study across the United States and Chile."

Leyva, D., Weiland, C., Barata, M.C., Yoshikawa, H., Snow, & A., Treviño, E.  (2015). Child Development. 

"Impacts on classroom quality of an initiative to improve the quality of preschool education in Chile: A cluster-randomized trial." 

Yoshikawa, H., Leyva, D., Snow, C.E., Treviño, E., Rolla, A., Barata, M.C., Weiland, C.,& Arbour, M.C.  (2015). Developmental Psychology.

"Methodological issues, implications, and remedies for the preschool age cutoff regression discontinuity design."

Lipsey, M., Weiland, C., Yoshikawa, H., Wilson, S., Dong, N., & Hofer, K.  (2014). Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis.  

"Does peer socio-economic status predict children’s gains in receptive vocabulary and executive function in prekindergarten?"

Weiland, C. & Yoshikawa, H. (2014). Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 35(5), 422-432.

"The co-occurring development of executive function skills and receptive vocabulary in children enrolled in an urban preschool program."

Weiland, C, Barata, M.C., & Yoshikawa, H.  (2014). Infant and Child Development, 23, 4-21.

“Associations between classroom quality and children’s vocabulary and executive function skills in an urban public prekindergarten program."

Weiland, C., Ulvestad, K., Sachs, J. & Yoshikawa, H.  (2013).  Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 28, 199-209.

"The impacts of an urban public prekindergarten program on children’s mathematics, language, literacy, executive function, and emotional skills: Evidence from Boston."

Weiland, C. & Yoshikawa, H.  (2013). Child Development, 84, 2112-2130.

“Early mathematics assessment: Validation of a preschool mathematics screening tool."

Weiland, C., Wolfe, C., Hurwitz, M., Yoshikawa, H., Clements, D., & Sarama, J.  (2012). Journal of Educational Psychology, 32, 311-333.

"The effects of large-scale economic change and policies on children’s developmental contexts and developmental outcomes." 

Weiland, C. & Yoshikawa, H.  (2012). Child Development Perspectives, 6, 342-350. 


Award Start Date
Sep 15, 2023
Award End Date
Jul 31, 2026
Award Start Date
Jul 01, 2022
Award End Date
Jun 30, 2025
Award Start Date
Sep 01, 2021
Award End Date
Aug 31, 2024
Award Start Date
Feb 01, 2020
Award End Date
Jan 31, 2024
Award Start Date
Nov 01, 2019
Award End Date
Jan 31, 2023
Award Start Date
May 01, 2018
Award End Date
Mar 31, 2021
Award Start Date
Sep 01, 2017
Award End Date
Aug 31, 2022
Award Start Date
Jun 01, 2017
Award End Date
May 31, 2021
Award Start Date
Sep 01, 2014
Award End Date
Jun 30, 2016