Key Professional Appointments

SEF Fellows Innovation and Change Southern Education Foundation, 2013 - 2016


Ph.D., Multicultural Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2002

M.A., Educational Studies, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, 1997

B.A., Music Theory and Composition, Youngstown State University, 1990

Attended, Jazz Studies, Southern University and A&M College, 1989

Awards, Honors, Associations

Derrick A. Bell Legacy Award Critical Race Studies in Education Association, 2015 - 2015

Pardee RAND Summer Faculty Fellowship RAND, 2014 - 2014

Fellows for Innovation and Change Southern Education Foundation, 2013 - 2013

Affiliated Faculty of the Urban Education Collaborative University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 2014 - 2014

Outstanding Recent Graduate University of Wisconsin--Madison, 2012 - 2012

Ebony Excellence Awards, Most Supportive Faculty Ebony Excellence Awards, Bruce D. Nesbitt African American Cultural Center, 2012 - 2012

Early Career Research Award Division K, American Educational Research Association, 2009 - 2009

Research & Service

My primary research interest focuses on how issues of race, class and gender intersect and impact educational equity in urban schooling contexts. I locate my research within two theoretical frameworks: Critical Race Theory and Black feminist theories. My colleague, Celia K. Rousseau-Anderson, and I edited CRT in Education: All God's Children Got a Song (2006, Routledge) one of the first book-length texts on CRT in education. Most recently, I am interested in how educational equity is mediated by school reform policies in the urban south. Specifically, I am interested in school reform in post-Katrina New Orleans, how local actors make sense of and experience those reform policies and how those policies become or are "racialized."


Dixson, A., Anderson, C., & Donnor, J. (2016) Critical race theory and education: All God's children got a song Routledge: New York, USA  link >

Dixson, A., Buras, K., & Jeffers, E. (2015) The color of reform: Race, education reform and charter schools in post-Katrina New Orleans Qualitative Inquirty 21 (3), 288-299  link >

Henry, K., & Dixson, A. (2015) Locking the door before we got the keys: Racial realities of the charter school authorization process in post-Katrina New Orleans Education Policy 30 (1), 218-240

Rollock, N., & Dixson, A. (2016) Critical Race Theory. The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Gender and Sexuality Studies. The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Gender and Sexuality Studies Wiley Blackwell: West Sussex, England, United Kingdom  link >

Stovall, D., & Dixson, A. (2015) The waters stay troubled: A dialogue on race, education, researcher accountability, and Black political struggle in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina Souls 17 (3-4), 162-174  link >

Dixson, A., Donnor, J., Reynolds, R., & , . (2015) Is the post-racial still racial?: Understanding the relationship between race and education NSSE Yearbook, Teachers College Record: New York, NY, USA

Dixson, A. (2014) Researching race in education: Policy, practice and qualitative research Information Age Publishing as part of the Education Policy in Practice: Critical Cultural Studies series Edited by Rodney Hopson and Edmund Hamann: Charlotte, NC, USA  link >

Lynn, M., & Dixson, A. (2014) Handbook of Critical Race Theory in Education Routledge-Falmer Press: New York, NY, USA  link >

Dixson, A., Royal, C., & Henry, K. (2013) School reform and school choice in Philadelphia, Chicago and New Orleans. Handbook of Urban Education Routledge: New York, USA  link >

Hopson, R., & Dixson, A. (2013) Race, ethnography and education Routledge: New York, NY, USA  link >

Donnor, J., & Dixson, A. (2013) The Resegregation of Schools Education and Race in the Twenty-First Century.. Routledge: New York  link >

Chapman, T., Dixson, A., Gillborn, D., & Ladson-Billings, G. (2013) Critical Race Theory. Handbook of Educational Theories Information Age Publishing: Charlotte, NC, USA  link >

Chapman, T., Dixson, A., David, G., & Gloria, L. (2013) Critical Race Theory. The Handbook of Educational Theories Information Age Publishing: Charlotte, NC, U.S.A..  link >

Cook, D., & Dixson, A. (2013) Writing critical race theory and method: A composite counter-story on the experiences of Black teachers in New Orleans post-Katrina International Journal of Qualitative Studies 26 (10), 1238-1258  link >

Dixson, A., & Dodo-Seriki, V. (2012) Positional and Identity Theories in Qualitative Research. Reviewing Qualitative Research in the Social Sciences Routledge: New York, NY, USA  link >

Dixson, A. (2012) Straight, no chaser: Race and Music Education Advances in Music Education Research  link >

Dixson, A. (2011) Whose Choice?: A critical race perspective on charter schools. Neo-Liberal Deluge: Hurricane Katrina, late capitalism and the remaking of New Orleans University of Minnesota Press: Minneapolis, MN, USA  link >

Hopson, R., & Dixson, A. (2011) Race, Ethnography and Education Ethnography and Education 6 (1), 131  link >


“New Orleans style reform?”: Challenging the narrative of success of post-Katrina New Orleans school reform (2014). Tulane University: New Orleans, LA.

Conversation on Intersectionality and Critical Race Theory (2014). Black Feminists: London, England.

Race, Choice and Democracy in Post-Katrina New Orleans (2014). Centre for Research on Race and Education: London, England.

What is culturally responsive pedagogy and why does it matter? (2013). New Teacher Roundtable: New Orleans, LA.

Education reform: What is helping and hurting our students? (2013). Teach For America: Atlanta, GA.

Can the Common Core be culturally relevant?: Culturally relevant pedagogy in an era of content standards (2013). Eastern Illinois University: Charleston, IL.

Qualitative Research Design (2013). American Education Research Association: San Francisco, CA.

A balm in Gilead: Using our wisdom, work and will to build solidarity and coalition to save public education. (2013). Alonzo A. Crim Center for urban educational excellence, Georgia State University,: Atlanta, GA.

Remaking new Orleans: Privatization at work (2012). University of Illinois at Chicago.

Qualitative Research Design, Asa G. Hilliard and Barbara A. SizemoreResearch Course on African Americans and Education (2012). American Educational ResearchAssociation: Vancouver, BC.

Critical race theory and social justice (2012).: Vancouver, BC.

Derrick Bell’s Feminism (2012).: Vancouver, BC.

Whose Choice?: A critical race perspective on charter schools (2011). University of Rochester: Rochester, NY.

Come let us reason together: Roles and responsibilities in educationalequity (2011). AmericanEducational Research Association: New Orleans, LA.

Straight, no chaser: Race and Music Education (2011). American Educational ResearchAssociation: New Orleans, LA.


2016 - present

Secretary Politics of Education SIG, 2014 - 2016

2015 - present

Chair National Council for the Teachers of English-Assembly for Research, 2014 - 2015

Chair National Council of Teachers of English, 2014 - 2015

Member Standing Committee on Communication and Outreach, AERA, 2012 - 2015

Member, Editorial Board Women, Gender and Families of Color, 2014 - present

Chair, Ella Baker/Septima Clark Human Rights Award Committee Division B, AERA, 2013 - 2014

Associate Chair NCTE-Assembly for Research, National Council of Teachers of English Research Foundation, 2013 - 2014

Race, Ethnicity and Education, 2013 - present

Secretary Division G, AERA, 2010 - 2013

Co-Facilitator Professional Development, AERA, 2012 - 2012

Member Think Tank Review Panel, National Education Policy Center, 2011 - present

Editorial Board Member National Education Policy Center, 2011 - present

Member American Educational Research Journal, 2011 - present

Guest Editor, Special Issue Teachers College Record, 2011 - 2011

Editorial Board Member Teachers College Record, 2004 - present


Politics of Education Overview of the political structure and processes through which many of the major issues in education are treated; analyzes nature of the policymaking process in education and discusses the roles of principal participants in the process of educational decision making, but focuses on fundamental recurring issues in education and the ways these issues have been resolved or not resolved by the overall system. Particular attention to the role that both the federal and state judiciary as well as legislative authority have had in shaping educational policy. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours.

Critical Race Theory & Educ Focuses on critical race theory as a critique of racism and the law in U.S. society and discusses its current applications to education policy and research in K-12 schooling and higher education. Also looks at how critical race theory can be used as a methodological lens for policy analaysis and educational research.

Race, Gender & Sexuality Issu Examines contemporary theories of race, gender, class, and sexuality, as well as analyzing how their dynamics play out in U.S. public schooling and history. In an attempt to discuss a range of disciplinary and theoretical approaches to diversity, we will shift among historical, sociological, political, theoretical and pedagogical issues. Traces the place of diversity in forming notions of citizenship, community, identity, and political affiliation/alliance. While two extended examples will focus on the interplay of race, class, and gender in the school-based issues of drop out rates and gendered interactions in the classroom and playground, we will also consider contemporary theories of diversity in local and global contexts.

Advanced Graduate Seminar Seminar in educational policy studies; sections offered in the following fields: (a) history of education; (b) philosophy of education; (c) comparative education; (d) social foundations of education; (e) philosophy of educational research; and (f) historical methods in education. May be repeated.

Adrienne Dixson

Professor, Education Policy, Organization and Leadership



351 Education Building
1310 S. Sixth St.
Champaign, IL 61820

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