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  • Dr. Lara Perez-Felkner

    Assistant Professor

    1205H Stone Building

    (850) 645-8450

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  • Dr. Lara Perez-Felkner is an Assistant Professor of Higher Education and Sociology in the Higher Education Program within the College of Education at Florida State University. She is also an affiliated faculty member in the Department of Sociology and the Center for Higher Education Research, Teaching, and Innovation (CHERTI) at FSU, an Alumni Fellow with Pathways to Adulthood, and a Research Affiliate of the Joint Centers for Education Research and Population Research Center at NORC at the University of Chicago. Most recently, she became a Senior Research Associate of FSU’s Center for Postsecondary Success.

    Her research uses developmental and sociological perspectives to examine how young people’s social contexts influence their college and career outcomes. She focuses on the mechanisms that shape entry into and persistence in institutions and fields in which they have traditionally been underrepresented. In particular, she investigates racial-ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic disparities in post-secondary educational attainment and entry to scientific career fields. Dr. Perez-Felkner is leading an ASHE Higher Education Report on Women in STEM and has been published in Contemporary Sociology, Developmental Psychology, Frontiers in Psychology, Journal of Latinos and Education, and Teachers’ College Record, as well in several edited volumes. Her research has been covered in the U.S., Europe, and Asia in news outlets including ABC News and National Public Radio affiliates, Bustle, Hindustan Times, Motherboard (Vice News), Science News for Students, U.S. News and World Report, and USA Today. Her research will be featured in a cable news special in spring 2018.

    Dr. Perez-Felkner has professional experience in Student Affairs as well. At the University of Chicago, she served as a Resident Head in the College from 2006-2012 and on an NSF AGEP-supported Social Sciences Division Taskforce on Diversity for the Professoriate. While earning her B.A. at Wesleyan University, she also worked in residence life, admissions, and student leadership.

    Dr. Perez-Felkner teaches graduate courses in Sociology of Education, Sociology of Higher Education, Outcomes of Higher Education, and Applied Regression. Impressed by the enthusiasm and caliber of FSU students, she is currently collaborating with and supporting multiple graduate and undergraduate students involved in research on higher education policies and pathways to degrees. She received FSU’s Transformation through Teaching Award in 2014 and was a finalist for the FSU College of Education’s Robert M. Gagne Research Award (2015).

    View Dr. Perez-Felkner’s website

    Office Phone: (850) 645-8450


    Recent Publications

    Orozco, R. & Perez-Felkner, L. (2017). Ni De Aquí, Ni De Allá: Conceptualizing the Self-Authorship Experience of Gay Latino College Men Using Conocimiento. Journal of Latinos and Education. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15348431.2017.1371018

    Milesi, C., Perez-Felkner, L., Brown, K, & Schneider, B. (2017). Engagement, Persistence, and Gender in Computer Science: Results of a Smartphone ESM Study. Frontiers in Psychology. 8:602. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00602

    Perez-Felkner, L., Nix, S., & Thomas, K. (2017). Gendered Pathways: How Mathematics Ability Beliefs Shape Secondary and Postsecondary Course and Degree Field Choices. Frontiers in Psychology, 8(386). doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00386 See related press.

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2015). Perceptions and Resilience in Underrepresented Students’ Pathways to College. Teachers College Record, 117(8), 1-60. Full text available here, with TCR reprint rights.


    Schneider, B., Milesi, C., Perez-Felkner, L., Brown, K., & Gutin, I. (2015). Does the gender gap in STEM majors vary by field and institutional selectivity? Teachers College Record. See associated poster.

    Nix, S., Perez-Felkner, L. C., & Thomas, K. (2015). Perceived mathematical ability under challenge: A longitudinal perspective on sex segregation among STEM degree fields. Frontiers in Psychology, 6(530), 1-19. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2015.00530. See related press.

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2015). Achievement Differences and Gender. In R. Gunstone (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Science Education. (pp. 9-10): Springer Netherlands. doi: 10.1007/978-94-007-2150-0_349. Full text here.

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2015). Attitude Differences and Gender. In R. Gunstone (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Science Education (pp. 93-94): Springer Netherlands. doi: 10.1007/978-94-007-2150-0_351 Full text here.

    Perez-Felkner, L., McDonald, S.-K., & Schneider, B. L. (2014). What happens to high-achieving females after high school? Gender and persistence on the postsecondary STEM pipeline. In I. Schoon & J. S. Eccles (Eds.), Gender differences in aspirations and attainment: A life course perspective (pp. 285-320). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139128933.018 Read and download here.

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2013). Occupational Aspirations/Expectations. In J. W. Ainsworth & G. J. Golson (Eds.), Sociology of education: An A-to-Z guide (Vol. 15, pp. 543-545). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781452276151.n289

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2013). Racial inequality: Returns to educational investments. In J. W. Ainsworth & G. J. Golson (Eds.), Sociology of education: An A-to-Z guide (Vol. 18, pp. 638-640). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications. http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781452276151.n333

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2013). Socialization in Childhood and Adolescence. In J. DeLamater & A. Ward (Eds.), Handbook of Social Psychology, 2nd Edition. (pp. 119-149) New York: Springer Publishing. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-6772-0_5

    Perez-Felkner, L., McDonald, S.-K., Schneider, B., & Grogan, E. (2012). Female and Male Adolescents’ Subjective Orientations to Mathematics and Their Influence on Postsecondary Majors. Developmental Psychology, 48(6), 1658–1673. See also APA link. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0027020

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2012). Educational Aspirations: Understanding Social Inequality in Higher Education and Careers. Pathfinder(4).

    Perez-Felkner, L., Hedberg, E. C., & Schneider, B. (2011). The Changing Landscape for Educational Opportunity: Enhancing the Public Option for Black Youth. In D. Slaughter-Defoe, H. Stevenson, E. Arrington & D. J. Johnson (Eds.), Black Educational Choice: Assessing the Private and Public Alternatives to Traditional K-12 Public Schools (pp. 234-354). Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger Press. DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.1.3889.6085 See also publisher and APA links.

    Schneider, B. L., Ford, T., & Perez-Felkner, L. (2010). Social Networks and the Education of Children and Youth. In P. Peterson, E. Baker & B. McGaw (Eds.), International Encyclopedia of Education (pp. 705-711). Oxford: Elsevier. See also Google Books link. http://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-08-044894-7.00627-8

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2009). Cultivating college dreams: Social pathways to educational attainment. Ph.D. Dissertation, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/305062579

    Perez-Felkner, L. (2009). ARC guide to archiving and managing complex data.  Center for Advancing Research and Communication in Science, Technology, and Mathematics. Chicago, IL: NORC at the University of Chicago.

    Perez-Longobardo, L. (2005). Latino Crossings: Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, and the Politics of Race and Citizenship. Contemporary Sociology: A Journal of Reviews, 34(5), 490-491. doi: 10.1177/009430610503400515. See also journal link.



    On STEM interest and major choice: Brookshire, B. (2017). Science classroom excitement is infectious. Retrieved from Science News for Students.

    On gender in computing and engineering fields: American Association of University Women (AAUW) Webinar 3/31/17 with K. Buse and R. Hughes. https://news.fsu.edu/news/2017/03/31/expert-pitch-fsu-researchers-work-narrow-gender-gap-engineering-computer-science

    On gender, career aspirations, and leadership: Payne, K. (2016). What Does Clinton’s Historic Nomination Mean For The Next Generation? Retrieved from WFSU News, Tallahassee, FL: http://news.wfsu.org/post/what-does-clinton-s-historic-nomination-mean-next-generation

    On school quality: Bernardo, R. (2016). 2016’s States with the Best & Worst School Systems. WalletHub. Retrieved from WalletHub.com website: https://wallethub.com/edu/states-with-the-best-schools/5335/#lara-perez-felkner ; Reference material was not included in the main article but is available here.