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David Gamson

Dr. David Gamson

Professor of Education (EDTHP)

Phone: 814-865-2583

310A Rackley Building
University Park, PA 16802


  • Education Policy Studies


  • Educational Theory and Policy Program


David Gamson is an associate professor of education in the Department of Education Policy Studies and the Educational Theory and Policy program. His research and teaching interests focus on school reform in the United States, both past and present. His current research focuses on the evolving roles and responsibilities of the school district since World War II, the changes to policies designed to provide equal educational opportunity, and the uses of academic standards throughout the past century. Gamson has been a fellow in the Advanced Studies Fellowship Program at Brown University, a National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellow, and a Visiting Scholar at the Russell Sage Foundation. His publications have appeared in Educational Researcher; Review of Research in Education; Paedagogica Historica; the Journal of Educational Administration; Mind, Brain, and EducationIntelligence, and the 2007 Yearbook of the National Society for the Study of Education. He is the co-editor, with Emily Hodge, of The Shifting Landscape of the American School District: Race, Class, Geography, and the Perpetual Reform of Local Control, 1935-2015 (Peter Lang, 2018). His book, The Importance of Being Urban: Designing the Progressive School District, 1890-1940  was published in 2019 by the University of Chicago Press.

Areas of Expertise

Age Levels



Education Access
Learning Standards

Curriculum Areas

Curriculum Issues
History/Social Studies Ed

Education Levels

Middle School/Junior High
Secondary/High School

Education Types

Minority Ed
Public Ed
Urban Ed

Educational Studies

History of Ed

Individual Difference


Methodological Research

Historical Research
Policy Analysis
Qualitative Research

Social Issues

Charter Schools
Civic Engagement
Civil Rights and Education
Education Policy
Race and Ethnicity
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