Miller 110B

Research Interests

Equity Studies
Immigration and Schooling
Policy & Educational Reform
Qualitative Research Methods

Dafney Blanca Dabach

Associate Professor

Dr. Dabach is an Associate Professor at the University of Washington's College of Education. Her research is situated in the field of immigration and education, with particular attention to examining secondary school-based contexts that immigrant youth encounter in U.S. schools. She also examines questions about how secondary social studies teachers approach teaching about U.S. government and civics in immigrant-youth contexts.

Dr. Dabach received her Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley and was a visiting scholar at Harvard's Graduate School of Education while working on the Longitudinal Immigrant Student Adaptation (LISA) study with principal investigators Carola and Marcelo Suárez-Orozco. She has been honored with prizes for both historical analysis and contemporary educational research, including the 1996 Morrison-Miller Prize in U.S. History and the 2011 American Educational Research Association's (AERA) Bilingual Education SIG's Outstanding Dissertation Award. In addition to research in immigration and education, Dr. Dabach is interested in efforts to integrate the arts in education order to provide creative and engaging educational opportunities for youth.

University of California, Berkeley, Ph.D, 2009
Fellowships, honors and awards

Research-Into-Practice Lecture, National Council for the Social Studies, (2018), honoring the publication of a single impactful article in the journal Theory and Research in Social Education. Awarded for the publication “Teachers Navigating Civic Education When Students Are Undocumented: Building Case Knowledge”

Outstanding Dissertation Award (AERA Bilingual Education SIG, 2011)

Outstanding Dissertation Award Nomination (UC Berkeley Graduate School of Education, 2009)

Morrison-Miller Prize in U.S. History (1996)


Lowenhaupt, R., Dabach, D. B., & Mangual Figueroa, A. (2021). Safety and Belonging in Immigrant-Serving Districts: Domains of Educator Practice in a Charged Political Landscape. AERA Open, 7. (Special Issue: Immigration & Education)

Hopkins, M., Weddle, H., Bjorklund, P., Umansky, I. M., & Dabach, D. B. (2021). “It’s Created by a Community”: Local Context Mediating Districts’ Approaches to Serving Immigrant and Refugee Newcomers. AERA Open, 7. (Special Issue: Immigration & Education) 

Dabach, D. B., Fones, A., & Merchant, N. H. (2020). When Some Students Are Undocumented, and Some Are Not: Teaching Civics in Mixed-Citizenship Classrooms. Social Education, 84(6), 362–368.

Umansky, I. M., Hopkins, M., & Dabach, D. B.. (2020). Ideals and realities: An examination of the factors shaping newcomer programming in six U.S. school districts (Special Issue, Segregation and Integration in the Education of English Learners: Leadership and Policy Dilemmas.) Leadership and Policy in Schools, 19(1), 36-59. doi: 10.1080/15700763.2020.1712731.

Dabach, D.B., Merchant, N. M. & Fones, A. (2018). Rethinking Immigration as a Controversy. Social Education 82(4): 307-314. 

Dabach, D.B. & Fones, A.K. (2018). The Civic Lessons and Immigrant Youth (CLAIY) Study: Implications for Teacher Education, The Teacher Educator 53 (3), 328-346.

Dabach D.B., Fones, A., Merchant N.H., and Adekile, A.(2018): Teachers Navigating Civic Education When Students Are Undocumented: Building Case Knowledge, Theory & Research in Social Education, DOI: 10.1080/00933104.2017.1413470

Dabach, D. B.., Suárez-Orozco, C., Hernandez, S. J., & Brooks, M. D. (2017). Future Perfect?: Teachers’ Expectations and Explanations of their Latino Immigrant Students’ Postsecondary Futures. Journal of Latinos and Education, 1-15. doi: 10.1080/15348431.2017.1281809

Dabach, D.B., Fones, A., Merchant, N. H., & Kim, M. J. (2016) Immigrant-origin youth’s responses to presidential immigration debate clips in an election year.  Journal of Language, Identity and Education. [Advance Online Publication]

Dabach, D. B.., & Fones, A. (2016). Beyond the “English Learner” frame: Transnational funds of knowledge in social studies. International Journal of Multicultural Education, 18(1), 7-27. doi:

Dabach, D. B.. (2015). "My student was apprehended by immigration": A  civics teacher’s breach of silence in a mixed-citizenship classroom. Harvard Educational Review. Special Issue: Dissolving boundaries: Understanding undocumented students’ educational experiences. 85(3), 383-412. doi: 10.17763/0017-8055.85.3.383

Dabach, D.B. (2015). Teacher placement into immigrant English learner classrooms: Limiting access in comprehensive high schools. American Educational Research Journal. 52(2), 243–274. doi:10.3102/0002831215574725

Jefferies, J. & Dabach, D.B. (2014). Breaking the silence: Facing undocumented issues in teacher education. Association of Mexican American Educators (AMAE) Journal. 8(1), 83-93. Available for download at: 

Dabach, D.B. . (2014). “You can’t vote, right?”: When language proficiency is a proxy for citizenship in a civics classroom. Available for download at:  Journal of International Social Studies, 4(2), 37-56.

Dabach, D. B.. (2014). “I am not a shelter!”: Teacher accounts of immigrant students’ stigma and social boundaries in separate “sheltered” EL secondary classrooms. Journal of Education for Students Placed At-Risk (JESPAR), 19(2), 98-124.

Dabach, D. B.. & Callahan, R. M. (2011). Rights versus reality: The gap between civil rights and English learners' high school educational opportunities. Teachers College Record.

Dabach, D. B.. (2011). Teachers as agents of reception: An analysis of teacher preference for immigrant-origin second language learners. The New Educator. 7:66–86. (Special theme issue on immigration and education.)

Dabach, D. B.. (2010). Visual prompts in writing instruction: Responses from English language learner middle school students. In D. Donahue & J. B. Stuart (Eds.) Artful teaching: Learning to integrate the arts for understanding across the disciplines. Teachers College Press.

Dabach, D. B.. (2006). Documenting the undocumented. Five Fingers Review: Intersecting Lines. 24, 212-216.

Menard-Warwick, J. & Dabach, D. B.., (2004). “In a little while I could be in front”: Social mobility, class, and gender in the computer practices of two Mexicano families. Journal of Adult and Adolescent Literacy. 47:5, 380-389.