I arrived at Hopkins in 2014 with a joint appointment in Sociology and the School of Education. I received both my BA and PhD in Sociology from the University of Chicago and spent two years at Brown as a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Population Studies and Training Center. My article on school violence won the 2014 James Coleman Award for the best article in the Sociology of Education from the American Sociological Association.
My research combines the sociology of education and urban sociology to study the roots of educational inequality and examine the dynamic connections between communities and schools that shape opportunities to learn both in and out of the classroom. I have studied the effects of concentrated neighborhood poverty on cognitive development, the geography of elementary school openings and closings, and the impact of neighborhood and school violence on student test scores, and the national distribution of school quality across urban, suburban, and rural areas. In a recently published article, I examine high school attendance patterns in Chicago and show that in poor and violent neighborhoods, students scatter to a wider range of school types, qualities, and locations than those from safer and more affluent neighborhoods. Another forthcoming article uses survey data from low-income neighborhoods in 10 different cities to understand how parents’ social and spatial understanding of their neighborhoods is shaped by the location of their child’s school. Together the findings of these articles suggest that the increased availability of school choice may lead to the fragmentation of social life in poor neighborhoods. My current projects continue my exploration of the ways that disadvantaged students move between a range of neighborhood and school contexts. The first of these projects brings together administrative data from both Baltimore City and the surrounding suburban Baltimore County to examine how students change schools within and between these districts. The second project brings together real-time transportation, weather, and crime data to understand the relationship between public transit, safety, and school attendance in the context of full open-enrollment policies.
230.109 Freshman Seminar: Hot Topics in Education
230.312 Education & Society
230.322 Quantitative Research Practicum
230.604 Linear Models
855.755 How Schools Work
Burdick-Will, Julia. Forthcoming. “Schools That Shape Neighborhoods: School Location, Social Ties, and Neighborhood Perception.” City & Community.
Burdick-Will, Julia. 2017. “Neighbors, But Not Classmates: Neighborhood Disadvantage, Local Violent Crime, and the Heterogeneity of Educational Experiences in Chicago.” American Journal of Education 124(1).
Burdick-Will, Julia. 2016. “Neighborhood Violent Crime and Academic Growth in Chicago: Lasting Effects of Early Exposure.” Social Forces 95(1): 133-157.
Burdick-Will, Julia. 2013. “School Violent Crime and Academic Achievement in Chicago.” Sociology of Education 86(4).
What happens when schoolchildren live in violent neighborhoods? The effects are broader than previously known, a study finds.
The Washington Post. July 3, 2018.
Study Shows 'Collateral Damage' Tied to Neighborhood Violence
US News & World Reports. June 12, 2018.
When It Comes to School Choices, It's a Privilege to Have Fewer
CityLab. September 21, 2015.