Areas of Expertise:
- Formative and summative evaluation of educational programs and media in informal and formal learning settings
- Quantitative and qualitative methods, including randomized controlled trials, quasi-experiments, surveys, interviews, observations, and multiple case-study analyses
- Project-based learning, social and emotional learning, and professional learning in k-12 and post-secondary settings
- Digital literacy and coding initiatives
- Community college program evaluation and institutional research, including external evaluations of equity and acceleration initiatives, and self-evaluation for ACCJC accreditation, federal and state reporting
Vanessa has more than ten years of experience in conducting surveys, experiments and mixed methods analyses to examine learning outcomes in a variety of informal and formal learning environments. At Rockman, she has worked on various projects, including evaluations of coding programs for under-represented youth, surveys of teacher professional development supports for Common Core State Standards implementation, community college program evaluations and secondary data analyses, surveys of social and emotional learning programs, and website user studies to examine user behaviors and learning impacts.
Prior to joining Rockman et al., Vanessa led a multiple-case study analysis of K-12 schools across the U.S. to understand multifaceted conditions that support school quality, focusing on conditions that support project-based learning, social and emotional learning and professional learning. As a lecturer in Communication at Stanford and in Media Studies at UC Berkeley, Vanessa taught courses on media impacts, media audiences, visual communication, and advised honors and graduate students on their research projects. Vanessa holds a Ph.D. in Communication Theory and Research from Stanford University, where her peer-reviewed research publications examined media impacts on attitudes, behaviors, and physiological responses. In her free time, Vanessa enjoys hiking, documentary films, and attending arts events.