Associate Professor - Middle Level Education

Jessica DeMink-Carthew's scholarship and teaching centers on supporting middle grades educators in creating and advocating for socially just learning environments for young adolescents. Her current research and teaching projects are focused on social justice education as an anti-oppressive, liberatory approach to teacher education (pre-service and in-service) and K-12 education. She is an experienced middle grades educator who has taught in France, Michigan, and Hawaii. Her areas of expertise include teacher education, social justice education, teacher advocacy, middle grades education, proficiency-based learning, and personalized learning.

Dr. DeMink-Carthew is an active advocate for socially just middle grades education locally and nationally in her various roles as a researcher, teacher educator, and community partner. As a faculty affiliate for the EMS-YPAR Collective in Burlington, Vermont she supports teachers in co-developing and teaching a school-wide 6th grade social justice curriculum. She is also a faculty member in the Middle Grades Institute, a summer professional development aimed at advancing equity in middle grades education.

A nationally recognized scholar, her research can be found in a variety of leading journals such as Middle School Journal, Research in Middle Level Education Online, Middle Grades Research Journal, Middle Grades Review, Studying Teacher Education, and AMLE Magazine. She currently serves on the Association for Middle Level Education Research Advisory Council and is an active member of the AERA Middle Level Education Research Special Interest Group.

Research and/or Creative Works

Teach for Justice Lab: A collective group of UVM students, faculty, and partners who collaborate on social justice initiatives in local K-12 schools and organizations that serve youth.  

Teachers Disrupting for Equity: A professional development and research group facilitated by middle level educators and scholars across the United States offering guidance and support to Vermont-based social justice educators through monthly virtual meetings.


DeMink-Carthew, J. & Gonell, Q. (Forthcoming, 2022). Lessons learned from teaching social justice education in sixth grade. Middle School Journal, 49(4), 24-34.

DeMink-Carthew, J., Netcoh, S., Brinegar, K. & Phillips, J (2022). Critical reflections on personalized project-based learning. In D. Virtue (Ed.), New Directions in Middle Level Education. Routledge.

DeMink-Carthew, J., Tinkler, A., Smith, C. & Tinkler. B. (2021). The impact of experiencing proficiency-based learning (PBL) on preservice teacher perspectives on PBL, assessment, and grading. Teacher Education Quarterly, 48(3), 52-77.

Bishop, P., Downes, J., Netcoh, S, Farber, K., DeMink-Carthew, J., Stokes, T. & Mark, R. (2020). Teacher roles in personalized learning environments. Elementary School Journal, 121(2).

DeMink-Carthew, J., Netcoh, S. & Farber, K. (2020). Exploring the potential for students to develop self-awareness through personalized learning. Journal of Educational Research, 113(3), 165-176.

DeMink-Carthew, J. & Olofson, M. (2020). Hands-joined learning as a framework for personalizing project-based learning in a middle grades classroom: An exploratory study. Research on Middle Level Education Online, 43(2), 1-17.

DeMink-Carthew, J. & Netcoh, S. (2019). Mixed feelings about choice: Exploring variation in middle school student experiences with making choices in a personalized learning project. Research on Middle Level Education Online, 40(10), 1-20.

DeMink-Carthew, J. (2018). Middle grades democratic education in neoliberal times: Examining youth social action projects as a path forward. Middle Grades Review, 4(2), 1-16.

DeMink-Carthew, J. (2018). Learning to teach in a “world not yet finished”: Social justice education in the preservice teacher classroom. Middle School Journal, 49(4), 24-34.

DeMink-Carthew, J., Olofson, M., Netcoh, S., Legeros, L., & Hennessey, S. (2017). An analysis of approaches to goal setting in middle grades personalized learning environments. Research on Middle Level Education Online, 40(1), 1-11.

DeMink-Carthew, J., & Bishop, P. (2017). Passion is not enough: Preparing middle level preservice teachers to be advocates for change. Middle School Journal.

DeMink-Carthew, J., Grove, R., Peterson, M.P. (2017). The influence of the core practices movement on the teaching and perspectives of novice teacher educators. Studying Teacher Education.

Petrick-Smith, C, Tinkler, A., DeMink-Carthew, J. & Tinkler, B. (2017). Pre-service mathematics teachers’ experiences with proficiency-based learning. Mathematics Teacher Education and Development.

DeMink-Carthew, J. (2017). Reform-oriented collaborative inquiry as a pedagogy for student teaching in middle school. Middle Grades Research Journal.

DeMink-Carthew, J., Hyler, M. E., & Valli, L. (2016). Redesigning teacher education in the context of multiple reform initiatives. In D. Polly (Ed.), Evaluating teacher education programs through performance-based assessments (1-17). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

DeMink-Carthew, J. & DeMink, J. (November/December 2016). “Hands-joined” projects: A framework for co-developing projects with students. AMLE Magazine.

Awards and Recognition

  • John Dewey Educator's Award for Excellence in Teaching, University of Vermont, College of Education and Social Services (2021)
  • Tim Shiner Ally Award, given to an ally who demonstrates a strong commitment to work within the UVM community of color in an effort to create social change (2021)
  • Thomas O. Erb Outstanding Article Award (2020), given for DeMink-Carthew, J. & Netcoh, S. (2019). Mixed feelings about choice: Exploring variation in middle school student experiences with making choices in a personalized learning project. Research on Middle Level Education Online, 40(10), 1-20.
  • Graduate Student Award from Middle Level Education Research Special Interest Group of AERA: An annual award given to the author of a middle level dissertation (2016)

Associations and Affiliations

  • American Educational Research Association (AERA)
  • AERA Middle Level Educational Research Special Interest Group
  • Teacher Education Division K (AERA)
  • Association for Middle Level Education (AMLE)
Jessica DeMink-Carthew

Areas of Expertise and/or Research

  • Social justice education
  • Middle grades education
  • Teacher advocacy
  • Teacher education


  • Ph.D. in Teacher Education & Professional Development from University of Maryland
  • M.Ed. in Elementary Education & Middle School ELA from University of Michigan
  • B.A. in Psychology & Sociology from University of Michigan


  • (802) 656-1465
Office Location:

Waterman 534-A

Courses Taught

  • EDSS 200: Social Justice Education
  • EDML 177: Young Adolescent English Language Arts Methods
  • EDML 286: Internship Support Seminar for Middle Level Education
  • EDML 296A: Grading for Equity