322E Miller Hall

Additional Appointments

Affiliate Faculty, Banks Center for Educational Justice

Research Interests

Equity Studies
Learning Sciences & Human Development
Qualitative Research Methods
Science & Mathematics
Teacher Education & Research

Niral Shah

Associate Professor

Niral Shah is an associate professor of the Learning Sciences & Human Development, and is director of the Race, Theory, & Design Lab. His research concerns how people learn racism and anti-racism. Shah’s prior work has focused on race and racism in STEM education, specifically how racial narratives about STEM ability affect students’ identities and participation in classrooms. He is also a co-developer of the EQUIP classroom observation tool (, which supports teachers and educational leaders to identify and mitigate implicit bias in classrooms.

Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley; Education in Mathematics, Science & Technology, 2013
M.Ed. University of California, Berkeley; Education in Mathematics, Science & Technology, 2010
B.S. University of Pennsylvania; Economics, 2002
B.A.S. University of Pennsylvania; Computer Science, 2002


Fellowships, honors and awards
  • Outstanding Reviewer Award, Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 2022
  • UW College of Education Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award, 2021
  • Article of the Year (Shortlisted), International Journal for Academic Development, 2021
  • National Academy of Education / Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2017
  • AERA SIG-RME (Research in Mathematics Education) STaR Fellow, 2016
  • Best Paper Nominee, International Conference of the Learning Sciences, 2014


Langer-Osuna, J. M., & Shah, N. (Eds.). (2021). Making visible the invisible: The promise and challenges of identity research in mathematics education. National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

Selected Articles

Shah, N. & Yadav, A. (2023). Racial Justice Amidst the Dangers of Computing Creep: A Dialogue. Tech Trends, 67, 467-474.

Shah, N. (2021). Racial equity and justice in teaching and teacher education: Progress, tensions, and open questions. Spencer Foundation.

Shah, N. & Coles, J. (2020). Preparing teachers to notice race in classrooms: Contextualizing the competencies of pre-service teachers with anti-racist inclinations. Journal of Teacher Education, 71(5), 584-599.

Shah, N. (2019). “Asians are good at math” is not a compliment: STEM success as a threat to personhood. Harvard Educational Review, 89(4), 661-686.

Reinholz, D. L., & Shah, N. (2018). Equity analytics: A methodological approach for quantifying participation patterns in mathematics classroom discourse. Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 49(2), 140-177.

Shah, N. (2017). Race, ideology, and academic ability: A relational analysis of racial narratives in mathematics. Teachers College Record, 119(7), 1-42.

Shah, N., & Leonardo, Z. (2016). Learning discourses of race and mathematics in classroom interaction: A poststructural perspective. In I. Esmonde & A. Booker (Eds.), Power and privilege in the learning sciences: Critical and sociocultural theories of learning (pp. 50-69). New York, NY: Routledge Press. 

Nasir, N. S., & Shah, N. (2011). On defense: African American males making sense of racialized narratives in mathematics education. Journal of African American Males in Education, 2(1), 24-45.

New features

While stereotypes about the academic success of Asian students may seem harmless, those false narratives dehumanize Asian people, argues University of Washington College of Education Professor Niral Shah.