Dr. Shirin Vossoughi (She/Her)
Assistant Professor, Learning Sciences, Northwestern University
Shirin Vossoughi is an assistant professor of Learning Sciences at Northwestern University’s School of Education and Social Policy, where she draws on ethnographic and interactional methods to study the cultural, socio-political, and ethical dimensions of human learning.
Bringing together cultural-historical approaches to learning with critical social thought, Vossoughi integrates macro-political concerns (structural racism and inequity, transnational migration, neoliberalism) with the close study of educational settings that work to enact alternate social and intellectual relations. Vossoughi’s research centers on hybrid learning environments that blend formal and informal elements and support young people to develop, question and expand disciplinary knowledge in ways that nourish educational self-determination. She is particularly concerned with understanding the forms of pedagogical mediation, ethical relations, and developmental trajectories that take shape within these settings. Her current work looks closely at teaching and learning in making/STEAM environments (elementary and middle school students), and examines the role of written feedback on student writing in the context of political education (high school and college students).
Vossoughi has taught in schools, after-school and summer programs, and served as the director of a summer camp for youth in the Iranian diaspora. She has published in such venues as Harvard Educational Review, Cognition & Instruction, Mind Culture & Activity, and Race, Ethnicity & Education, and was the recipient of the 2019 AERA Division C Jan Hawkins Award. As the daughter of Iranian immigrants, she is personally invested in the design of educational settings for youth from migrant, immigrant and diasporic backgrounds. She takes a collaborative approach to research, partnering with teachers, families, and students to study the conditions that foster educational dignity and possibility.