Cynthia L. Uline

Page Name

Additional Scholarly Activities

Special Issue of the Journal of Educational Administration, Building High Quality Schools for Learners and Communities, 47, 3. Emerald Literati Network Highly Commended Issue, 2010.

Awarded Dean’s 2009 Excellence Award for Research and Scholarship.

Awarded research assigned time as a San Diego State University COE 2008-2009 Research Active Faculty Member.

Awarded research assigned time as a San Diego State University COE 2006-2007 Research Active Faculty Member.

Peer reviewed journal article, The Alleged Demise of Science: A Critical Inquest, published in the Journal of Educational Administration, 39, 5, co-authored with Donald Willower, was selected as the "Most Outstanding Paper " in the 2001 volume.

Featured in the Ohio State University’s 1999 University Research Report.

Chosen as Participant in the Fifteenth National University Council of Educational Administration Graduate Student Research Seminar in Educational Administration at the 1995 Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association New Orleans, LA: Presentation of dissertation research.


Co-principal Investigator.  The Green Schools Fellows research seeks to gain in depth understanding of the US Green Building Council's Green Schools Fellows program, chronicling year one of the Green Schools Fellows program.  The purpose of the Green School Fellows Program is to transform school district cultures "from the inside out."  Beginning with district-defined metrics for success, the Green Schools Fellows will facilitate district-wide "greening" or sustainability efforts through providing expert information, training, and guidance.  The purpose of the GSF program research is to identify and document the coherence and effectiveness of USGBC GSF training programs and Fellows' change strategies within two large urban school districts in the United States.  The result will be used to inform the continuous improvement of the GSF program, to secure additional funding, and ti inform a broader audience of individuals interested in greening schools (policy makers, educators, community leaders).


Principal Investigator. Improving the physical and social environment of school as place: The effects of building renovation on teaching and learning. This third phase of  investigation brings The Walls Speak research to California.  In this phase, we continue to explore the interplay between quality facilities, school climate, and student achievement, charting the effects of facility improvements on student and teacher attitudes, behaviors, and performance within schools undergoing renovations in a large Southern California urban school district.  This large urban district was chosen in order to continue our study of facility quality, school climate, and student achievement in schools that serve a primarily disadvantaged (socio-economically) student population.  Further, data collected within one district holds constant the factors of district level organization and management.  Here we apply mixed research methods, using a concurrent nested design.  Combining methodologies utilized within the first two phases of the research, this study relies predominantly on a collective, instrumental case design, embedding quantitative data to enrich the descriptions of the case study schools and chart changes in their physical and social environments, as well as changes in student performance, over time.

Quantitative and qualitative data collection will take place before renovations commence and after they are completed. Pre and post surveys will be administered at all nine schools undergoing renovation.  This will allow researchers to chart changes in occupants’ perceptions of the physical environment and the social environment across the total population of schools receiving improvements. Further, subsequent inquiry across this larger sample will continue to track changes in climate and achievement as they relate to the various improvements in building quality.


Guest Editor. Building high quality schools for learners and communities. The Journal of Educational Administration, 47, 3. This issue examines what we know about the influence of educational places upon students’ learning, as well as the role the public plays in shaping those learning spaces and joining the community of learners. It includes researchers who have been active in the study of school facilities over the past 20 years, as well as younger researchers who are bringing new questions, methodologies, and conceptualizations to this endeavor.  Researchers invited to participate in this issue span the fields of public policy, urban planning, education, architecture, and sociology, presenting research and practice that is international in scope.


San Diego State University Director. The CEFPI/SDSU Advanced Certificate Program In Educational Facilities Planning. $115, 500 contract. Facilitated a partnership betweenThe Council of Educational Facility Planners International and The National Center for the 21st Century Schoolhouse, located within San Diego State University’s College of Education to develop an advanced certificate program in educational facilities planning to be delivered electronically worldwide. This comprehensive course of study is grounded in the key knowledge and skills central to the sound planning, building, and maintaining of learner-centered school facilities.


Principal Investigator.The Walls Still Speak: The Stories Occupants Tell. Accompanying the recent concern for the quality of our nation’s educational infrastructure has come a growing body of research connecting the quality of school facilities to student outcomes including both achievement and attitude as well as to teacher attitude and behavior. Less is known about the mechanisms of these relationships. The proposition examined in phase one of this study was that at least part of the explanation for the link between school building quality and student outcomes is the mediating influence of school climate. It was hypothesized that the quality of school facilities would be related to four factors of school climate: academic press, community engagement, teacher professionalism, and the collegial leadership of the principal. Participants from 82 middle schools in Virginia completed surveys at a regularly scheduled faculty meeting. Results confirmed a link between the quality of school facilities and student achievement in both English and mathematics. As well, correlational analyses indicated that quality facilities were significantly positively related to three school climate variables: academic press, teacher professionalism, and community engagement. Finally, results confirmed the hypothesis that school climate plays a mediating role in the effects of the quality of school facilities on student achievement. In order to further explore the complicated intricacies of how a school building’s physical properties influence teaching and learning, a follow up study, structured according to a collective, instrumental case design, will be conducted. Two to three schools from the original sample will be selected purposefully, maximizing learning from cases rich in information


Guest Co-editor. Theory into Practice. Theme Issue on Achievement Gaps. This issue intends to examine the extent to which federal and state policies influence changes in practice that will ultimately close achievement gaps. What are the salient variables that differentiate failure and success in closing these gaps? What are the unchecked assumptions that may undermine progress? What are the possible unintended consequences of these policies, especially if they are implemented poorly? Contributing authors will discuss the various elements comprising the theory of action implied in federal and state policies, addressing these questions as they relate to practice in schools.

2001- 2003

Principle Investigator. Ohio Principals Leadership Academy Entry Year Program Research Study, $50, 000. The Ohio Principal’s Academy (OPLA) Entry Year Program intends to provide meaningful professional development so that quality educational leaders will enter and remain in the principalship, finding acceptable levels of satisfaction within the job and performing it effectively. A two-year qualitative study of the Entry Year Program is being conducted in order to determine the effectiveness of the various EYP interventions. The study will focus on the work of veteran/protégé principal groups, the nature of the mentorship process, and the development of necessary skills for administrator portfolio writing. Further, the study will consider questions regarding the application of these skills to administrator practice. The study will result in a descriptive analysis of Academy interventions, entry year principal activities, and the application of knowledge gained to leadership practice within schools and school districts.

In addition, the study will explore Ohio’s emerging school administrator licensure standards and corresponding policies. The language of the licensure standards stipulate that principals must complete the Entry Year Program in order to be licensed by the state department of education. Complementary qualitative and quantitative methods will be employed within this phase of the research. Qualitative analysis will develop from case studies of key policymakers and principals involved in emerging licensure standards related to the OPLA. Quantitative analysis will rest on a survey instrument developed to assess policy compliance attitudes among OPLA members. This data will be analyzed using GIS (geographical information systems) to evaluate salient spatial characteristics related to policy compliance attitude and perceived policy climate related to emerging licensure standards.


Principal investigator. “Transforming Learning Communities” project, $150,717. The purpose of the research was to conduct in depth case studies of three high performing schools that have made significant progress in school-based reforms supported by the Ohio Department of Education’s Venture Capital grants program. These schools are three of twelve identified statewide.


Principal investigator. University seed grant, $18,000. “Problem Solving Practices of Public School Leaders in the Information Age.” The project seeks to explore how public school administrators use technology as a means of active participation and communication, and further, how they use the information made available through digital technology to identify and solve problems of practice.


Co-principal investigator. Campus Collaborative Seed Grant, $5,000. Construct a database to promote teaching inquiry and service among twelve schools in the Columbus School District, The Ohio State University.


Participant investigator. University Council of Educational Administration (UCEA) sponsored national research project, “A Thousand Voices From the Firing Line.”


Dissertation work recognized for participation in the Fifteenth National University Council of Educational Administration Graduate Student Research Seminar in Educational Administration at the 1995 Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association New Orleans, LA.

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