Soojin Oh Park
Immigration & Schooling
Professor Park’s research is focused on improving the quality of learning experiences, particularly among children in non-dominant communities (e.g., low-income, immigrant and/or families of color). Across her work, she seeks to advance policy and practice that address persistent racial and socioeconomic inequities in early learning and reflect the voices and expertise of historically underserved families and communities. Her research pursues three goals: 1) evaluating and strengthening early childhood systems, policy and programs, 2) supporting Dual Language Learners and immigrant-origin children and 3) understanding parenting and family contexts in early childhood development.
Professor Park partners with state early learning agencies in continuously improving the quality of publicly-funded pre-kindergarten. She is leading a cross-state case study, a first in the field of early childhood, to uncover key elements of state-level research-practice partnerships and how they may play a critical role in driving sustainable and systemic transformation of early learning systems and programs.
To complement broad-based efforts to improve early childhood programs, Professor Park centers her work on families and communities — much less understood yet equally important levers for equalizing early learning opportunities for all children. As a principal investigator of the FAMILY (Fathers And Mothers Investing in Learning of Young Children) Study, she investigates how Washingtonian parents promote early learning; what parenting knowledge, beliefs and practices matter; and how policies may establish priorities and devote resources for underserved families and children.
Watch Professor Park’s EduTalk about how to better support the growing number of dual language learners in Washington.