Julia Burdick-Will

Julia Burdick-Will

Associate Professor

Contact Information

Research Interests: Urban sociology, education, stratification

Education: PhD, University of Chicago

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, the national distribution of school quality across urban, suburban, and rural areas, and the degree to which 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 uses 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, Marc L. Stein, and Jeffrey Grigg. 2019. “Danger on the Way to School: Exposure to Violent Crime, Public Transportation, and Absenteeism.” Sociological Science 6(1): 118-142.

Burdick-Will, Julia. 2018. “Neighborhood Violence, Peer-Effects, and Academic Achievement in Chicago.” Sociology of Education 91(3).

Burdick-Will, Julia. 2018. “School Location, Social Ties, and Neighborhood Perception.” City & Community 17(2).

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).

A High-Crime Neighborhood Makes It Harder To Show Up For School
NPR. February 13, 2019

Hopkins study: Baltimore students who commute through crime-ridden neighborhoods more likely to miss school
Baltimore Sun. February 13, 2019

Want Students to Attend School Every Day? Make Sure They Feel Safe on the Way
Education Week. February 13, 2019

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.