University of Vermont

James M. Jeffords Center for Policy Research

Biography of Erin K. Shoulberg

UVM Major: Doctoral, Department of Psychology

Erin ShoulbergErin Shoulberg graduated from Grinnell College in 1997 with a BA in Psychology and a concentration in Gender and Women’s Studies.   After graduation, she moved from the Midwest to the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York to work in the children’s summer camp industry.  Shoulberg entered the UVM Developmental Psychology graduate program in 2005 and received her MA from the University of Vermont in 2008.

Project Description

Shoulberg’s research focuses on how children’s and adolescents’ relationships influence their social and academic functioning.  A central goal of her work is to better understand how the interplay of social and academic processes informs students’ adjustment.  Shoulberg is particularly interested in studying factors related to the decline in math and science achievement that occurs during middle school. The project she plans to pursue as a Jeffords Fellow will investigate how social status goals (e.g., thinking it is important to popular or important to be liked) are linked with engagement and performance in math and science during the late elementary and middle school years.  Additionally, she will explore if these relations vary by students’ gender or differences in their conceptions of what it means to be “popular”.

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