Stanford Graduate School of Education (GSE) welcomes two familiar faces back to the faculty: Susanna Loeb and Candace Thille, who both departed Stanford in 2018 for positions at other institutions, have returned to the university, bringing decades of experience in educational research, innovation, and collaboration.
“I am thrilled to welcome Susanna and Candace back to the GSE,” said Dan Schwartz, the I. James Quillen Dean and Nomellini & Olivier Professor of Educational Technology at the GSE. “Both are valued longtime colleagues and distinguished scholars who have had enormous impact in education. They are returning to Stanford during a transformational time in the field and at the university, and they bring a wealth of expertise and new ideas to this work.”
Both Loeb and Thille will be faculty leads in the Stanford Accelerator for Learning, the first university-wide initiative focused on accelerating solutions to learners. The Stanford Accelerator for Learning connects scholars across disciplines and with external partners to bridge research, innovation, practice, and policy, and bring quality scalable and equitable learning experiences to all.
Susanna Loeb rejoins the GSE faculty as a professor of education. She initially joined the faculty in 1999 and served as the Barnett Family Professor of Education from 2011-2018 (a chair now held by Professor Thomas S. Dee). She was also a senior fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
Loeb’s research focuses broadly on education policy and its role in improving educational opportunities for students. Her work has addressed issues including early childhood systems, school finance and governance, and educator career choices and professional development.
She is the founder and acting executive director of the National Student Support Accelerator, a program dedicated to ensuring equitable access to high-impact tutoring. Launched in 2020, the program provides open-source tools and resources to help schools and other organizations structure, implement, and scale high-quality tutoring for K-12 students in need.
Previously at Stanford she founded and directed the Stanford Center for Education Policy Analysis (originally the Institute for Research on Education Policy and Practice), a research center at the GSE created in 2006 to unite an interdisciplinary array of scholars from across the campus whose work spans a range of education policy issues. She also served as co-director of Policy Analysis for California Education, where she led the research for both Getting Down to Facts projects for California schools.
Loeb returns to Stanford after five years at Brown University, where she served as director of the Annenberg Institute for School Reform and a professor of international and public affairs and education.
In 2020, she was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She is also an affiliate at the National Bureau of Education Research and the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL), and a member of the National Academy of Education.
She received bachelor’s degrees in civil engineering and political science from Stanford, and a master’s degree in public policy and doctorate in economics from the University of Michigan.
Candace Thille rejoins the GSE as an associate professor of education, teaching courses in learning sciences and technology design as well as education data science. She will also direct the adult learners component of the Stanford Accelerator for Learning.
The focus of Thille’s work involves research in the science of learning, applying it to the design and evaluation of technology-mediated learning environments and using those environments to conduct research at the intersection of human learning and machine learning.
Thille initially joined the Stanford faculty in 2013, serving as an assistant professor at the GSE, faculty in the Neurosciences Interdepartmental Program, and a research fellow in the Office of the Vice Provost for Online Learning. She was also the founding director of the Open Learning Initiative at Carnegie Mellon University and at Stanford. She left Stanford in 2018 to serve as the director of learning science at Amazon, working with the company’s global learning and development team to scale and innovate workplace learning.
Thille currently serves on the board of trustees for the Educational Testing Service and on the advisory council of the California Education Learning Lab, a state-funded grantmaking organization charged with improving learning outcomes and closing equity gaps in California’s public colleges and universities. She has also served on the board of directors of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, as a fellow of the International Society for Design and Development in Education, and on the advisory council for the National Science Foundation Directorate for Education and Human Resources.
Thille earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of California at Berkeley, a master’s degree in information technology from Carnegie Mellon University, and a doctorate in higher education from the University of Pennsylvania.
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