Dr. Min Sun is an Associate Professor in Education Policy. She specializes in economics of education, educator labor markets and effectiveness, school accountability and improvement, and school finance policies. Besides utilizing conventional large-scale administrative data on schools, teachers, and students, Dr. Sun uses "big data" analytics (such as machine learning strategies, social network analysis) to analyze novel data (e.g., texts, social relationships, and team professional relationships) in educational policy research. Her work has been published in premier research journals in educational policy, economics and public policy, and has been funded by IES, NSF, Spencer Foundation, William T. Grant Foundation, among others.
Dr. Sun is the Director of Education Policy Analytics Lab (EPAL). The lab's work uses interdisciplinary perspectives and research methods to provide cutting-edge educational policy research to address educational, economic, and social inequities. We seek to provide meaningful, innovative, and rigorous analysis of data (both in-depth and at scale) to address pressing educational issues at federal, state, and local levels. Our work is conducted in close partnership with practitioners and policymakers to bring real solutions to real issues. The lab unites scholars, graduate, and undergraduate students from educational policy, statistics, and computer science.
Dr. Sun is currently leading three research projects:
(1) a Research-Practice Parntership with Seattle Public Schools on supporting beginning teachers and building a culturally responsive teacher workforce. See please a reporting of our work here;
(3) McCleary school finance reforms, teacher salaries, teacher labor markets, and student outcomes, particularly for historically underserved students of color or low-income students.
Moreover, to learn more about Dr. Sun's recent thinking, please click here for a Q&A at Seattle Times.
Education Policy, Data Science in Education, Economics of Education, Educator Labor Markets, Teacher Instructional Quality, School Accountability and Improvement, School Finance and Teacher Salary
Ph.D. Dual major in Educational Policy (Ed. Policy) and Measurement and Quantitative Methods (MQM), Michigan State University
Selected Journal Articles
Google Scholar Profile to Get a more comprehensive list
Jihyun, Kim, Min Sun, and Peter Youngs. “Developing the ‘Will’: The Relationship between Teachers’ Perceived Policy Legitimacy and Instructional Improvement.” Teachers College Record, in press
Master, B., Sun, M., & Loeb, S. (2018). Teacher workforce developments: Recent changes in academic competitiveness and job satisfaction of new teachers. Education Finance and Policy. 13(3), pp.310-332.
Sun, Min, Emily Penner, & Susanna Loeb. 2017. "Resource-and approach-driven multi-dimensional change: Three-year effects of School Improvement Grants." American Educational Research Journal, 54(4), 607–643.
Sun, M., Andrew Saultz, and Yincheng Ye. 2017. “Federal Policy and the Teacher Labor Market: Exploring the Effects of NCLB on Teacher Turnover.” School Effectiveness and School Improvement, 28(1), 102–122.
Sun, Min, Susanna Loeb, and Jason A. Grissom. 2017. “Building Teacher Teams: Positive Spillover from More Effective Colleagues.” Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 39(1), 104–125.
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.
Ni, Yongmei, Min Sun, and Andrea Rorrer. 2015. “Principal Turnover: Upheaval and Uncertainty in Charter Schools?” Educational Administration Quarterly, 51(3): 409-437.
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.
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.
07/2018- 06/19 Spencer Foundation, “Public Policy, Organizational Reform Strategies and Performance: A Textual Analysis of Strategic Actions that Move the Needle in Underperforming Schools.” Principal Investigator.
01/2018– 12/19 Spencer Foundation, “Cultivating Capacity for Racial Equity in Education.” Co-Principal Investigator (with PI Dr. Ann Ishimaru and Co-PI Dr. Filiberto Barajas-López).
07/2017– 06/18 Royalty Research Fund (RRF), “Using Text as Data to Understand School Improvement Strategies and Their Impacts.” Principal Investigator.
06/2017– 05/18 Washington Educational Research Association (WERA), “Research Collaborative on Addressing Systemic Disparities in Education.” Co-Principal Investigator (with PI Dr. Ann Ishimaru and Co-PI Dr. Filiberto Barajas-López).
08/2014– 07/19 National Science Foundation (NSF), “CAREER: Exploring Beginning Mathematics Teachers’ Career Patterns.” Principal Investigator.
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.
EDLPS 302 Intro to Edu Policy
EDLPS 564 Economics of Education
EDLPS 560 Ed Policy Studies and Practice
EDPSY 567 Applied Quasi-experimental Research in Education and Other Social Science