Dr. Min Sun specializes in using quantitative methods to understand the ways in which federal, state, and district policies affect teaching and learning outcomes. Her interests include educator workforce development, school accountability, and school improvement.
Her work on teacher improvement and teacher policy includes a collection of research projects and partnerships with both states and districts on developing and supporting an effective and diverse teaching workforce that supports all students' learning. Incorporating both economic and socio-behavioral theories of how school settings affect teacher performance, this line of her inquiry utilizes sophisticated causal analyses and innovative methods to contribute to the limited understanding of teacher peer learning in schools. Her work also examines teacher and principal labor market issues through a macro and systemic lens. This work has been centered on policy-malleable factors that contribute to a more equitable distribution of educator quality across subgroups of students. In addition, she has been partnership with local school districts to evaluate the impacts of several reform initiatives of improving teacher quaity on short-term and long-run student outcomes.
Dr. Sun's work on school accountability and school turnaround focuses on examining the impacts of the School Improvement Grants (SIG), priority and focus schools, on student achievement, attendance, and parental choices. Moreover, her work aims to understand the mechanisms of change, for whom these strategies work and under what conditions.
Dr. Sun’s work has been published in peer-reviewed journals of American Educational Research Journal, Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, Education Finance and Policy, American Journal of Education, Teachers College Record, Educational Administration Quarterly, and School Effectiveness and School Improvement among others. Her research has received support from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the American Educational Research Association (AERA).
Education policy, School Effectiveness and School Improvement, Teacher and principal labor market; Peer effects and teacher learning; Quantitative methods (i.e., econometrics and social network analysis)
Ph.D. Dual major in Educational Policy (Ed. Policy) and Measurement and Quantitative Methods (MQM), Michigan State University
Sun, M, Penner, E., & Loeb, S. (in press). Resource-and approach-driven multi-dimensional change: Three-year effects of School Improvement Grants. American Educational Research Journal.
Sun, Min, Andrew Saultz, and Yincheng Ye. “Federal Policy and the Teacher Labor Market: Exploring the Effects of NCLB on Teacher Turnover.” School Effectiveness and School Improvement. published online before print on October 17, 2016, doi:10.1080/09243453.2016.1242506.
Sun, Min, Susanna Loeb, and Jason A. Grissom. “Building Teacher Teams: Positive Spillover from More Effective Colleagues.” Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis. published online before print on September 1, 2016, doi:10.3102/0162373716665698
Master, Benjamin, Min Sun, and Loeb, Susanna. 2016. “Teacher workforce developments: Recent Changes in Academic Competitiveness and Job Satisfaction of New Teachers.” Education Finance and Policy.
Sun, Min, and Yongmei Ni .2016. “Work Environments and Labor Markets: Explaining Principal Turnover Gap between Charter Schools and Traditional Public Schools.” Educational Administration Quarterly, 52(1): 144-183.
• This article is among the journal’s top 10 most-read articles in 2016.
Ni, Yongmei, Min Sun, and Andrea Rorrer. 2015. “Principal Turnover: Upheaval and Uncertainty in Charter Schools?” Educational Administration Quarterly, 51(3): 409-437.
• Since June 2014, this article has been ranked among the journal’s top 10 most-read articles in 2015 and 2016.
Frank, Kenneth A.*, Yun-Jia Lo*, and Min Sun*. 2014. “Social Network Analysis of the Influences of Educational Reforms on Teachers’ Practices and Interactions.” Zeitschrift für Erziehungswissenschaft (A German Journal). * Co-first authors, alphabetically ordered.
Sun, Min, Annie Garrison, Christine J. Larson, and Kenneth A. Frank. 2014. “Exploring Colleagues’ Professional Influences on Mathematics Teachers’ Learning.” Teachers College Record, 116(6): 305-335.
Konstantopoulos, Spyros, and Min Sun. 2014. “Are Teacher Effects Larger in Small Classes?” School Effectiveness and School Improvement, 25(3): 312-328.
Sun, Min, William R. Penuel, Kenneth A. Frank, H. Alix Gallagher, and Peter Youngs. 2013. “Shaping Professional Development to Promote the Diffusion of Instructional Expertise among Teachers.” Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 35(3): 344 -369.
• Since April 2013, this article was ranked among the journal’s top 50 most-read articles and was ranked #1 among this journal’s most-read articles in Aug. & Sept. 2013
• This paper has been interviewed by AERA Director of Publishing;
• It is also featured in policy blogs of Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE).
Sun, Min, Kenneth A. Frank, William R. Penuel, and Chongmin Kim. 2013. “How External Institutions Penetrate Schools through Formal and Informal Leaders?” Educational Administration Quarterly, 49(4): 610-644.
Penuel, William R.*, Kenneth A. Frank*, Min Sun, Chongmin Kim, and Corinne A. Singleton. 2013. “The Organization as a Filter of Institutional Diffusion.” Teachers College Record, 115 (1): 306-339. *co-first authors.
Konstantopoulos, Spyros, and Min Sun. 2012. “Is the Persistence of Teacher Effects in Early Grades Larger for Lower-Performing Students?” American Journal of Education, 118 (3): 309-339.
Penuel, William R., Min Sun, Kenneth A. Frank, and H. Alix Gallagher. 2012. “Using Social Network Analysis to Study How Collegial Interactions Can Augment Teacher Learning From External Professional Development.” American Journal of Education, 119 (1): 103-136.
Sun, Min., Peter Youngs, Haiyan Yang, Hongqi Chu, and Qian Zhao. 2012. “The Association of District Principal Leadership Evaluation with Learning-Centered Leadership Practice: Evidence from Michigan and Beijing.” Educational Assessment, Evaluation and Accountability, 24(3): 189-213.
Sun, Min, and Peter Youngs. 2009. “How Does District Principal Evaluation Affect Learning-Centered Principal Leadership? Evidence from Michigan School Districts.” Leadership and Policy in Schools, 8(4): 411-445.
Sun, Min, R. Brock Mutcheson, and Jihyun Kim. 2015. “Teachers’ Use of Evaluation for Instructional Improvement and School Supports for This Use.” In Making the Most of Multiple Measures: The Impacts and Challenges of Implementing Rigorous Teacher Evaluation Systems, eds. Jason A. Grissom and Peter Youngs. New York, NY: Teachers College Press.
Sun, Min. 2014. “Capacity Building of Organizations.” In Encyclopedia of Education Economics and Finance, eds. Dominic J. Brewer and Lawrence O. Picus. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Jihyun, Kim, Min Sun, and Peter Youngs. “Developing the ‘Will’: The Relationship between Teachers’ Perceived Policy Legitimacy and Instructional Improvement.” under review (working paper is available upon request).
08/2015- present “Research Collaborative on Addressing Systemic Disparities in Education”. With Ann Ishimaru and Filiberto Barajas-López.
08/2014-07/19 National Science Foundation (NSF), “CAREER: Exploring Beginning Mathematics Teachers’ Career Patterns.” Sole PI. Award amount: $628,000.
07/2013- present Virginia Tech, “Organizing for Policy Implementation in Schools: Evidence from the Implementation of New Performance-Based Teacher Evaluation Reform in Virginia.” Sole PI. Jointly funded by CLAHS Grant-Writing Incentive Grants and Institute for Society, Culture, and Environment (ISCE).
09/2013-08/15 National Science Foundation (NSF), “Cross-National Comparison of School and District Supports for High-Quality Mathematics Instruction in the U.S. and China.” Co-PI with Thomas Smith and Paul Cobb. Award amount: $200,000.
06/2010-05/11 American Educational Research Association (AERA), in conjunction with National Science Foundation (NSF). “Shaping Professional Development to Promote the Diffusion of Instructional Expertise among Teachers.” Sole PI. Award amount: $20,000.
EDLPS 567 Teaching and Teacher Quality Policy
EDPSY 567 Applied Quasi-experimental Research in Education and Other Social Science
EDLPS 564 Economics of Education
EDLPS 560 Perspectives on Education Policy and Policy-Making