Heather Bachman, Ph.D.

  • Associate Professor, Department of Psychology in Education

Graduate Student Advisee

Leanne Elliott

Education & Training

  • PhD, Loyola University Chicago

Research Interest Summary

School readiness; achievement; home and classroom (preschool/elementary) processes; low-income families.

Research Interests

In my research, I apply a psychological approach to education research that relies heavily on a bioecological framework to capture the complexity of interrelations among distal (e.g., SES, policy) and proximal (e.g., parenting, classroom instruction) factors that shape children's school readiness skills and academic achievement. I also aim to balance the predominant focus on risk and disadvantage with an emphasis on positive developmental outcomes among children from diverse family backgrounds. My research agenda is concentrated in three primary areas. The first focus involves linking parenting practices to children's school readiness skills and achievement during elementary school. The second focus examines how classroom instructional practices in Pre-K and elementary school promote academic, socioemotional, and behavioral skills. The third focus relates the family and classroom research to broader, contemporary issues in family and educational policy. Connecting the three strands of this applied research agenda is my primary goal of uncovering how multiple contextual influences (family, child care, school, or policy) can narrow achievement gaps and improve the well-being of children from economically disadvantaged families.

Representative Publications

Bachman, H. J., Coley, R. L., & Carrano, J. (2012). Low-income mothers’ patterns of partnership instability and adolescents’ behavioral and emotional well-being. Journal of Family Psychology, 26, 263-273. DOI: 10.1037/a0027427.

Bachman, H. J., Coley, R. L., & Chase-Lansdale, P. L. (2009). Is maternal marriage beneficial for low-income income adolescents? Applied Developmental Science, 13, 153-171.

Bachman, H. J., Coley, R. L., & Carrano, J. (2011). Maternal relationship instability influences on childrens emotional and behavioral functioning in low-income families. Manuscript accepted for publication at Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology. DOI: 10.1007/s10802-011-9535-1.

Morrison, F. J., Bachman, H. J., & Connor, C. M. (2005). Improving literacy in America: Guidelines from research. Yale University Press: New Haven, CT. 

Bachman, H. J., Coley, R. L., & Carrano, J. (2012). Low-income mothers patterns of partnership instability and adolescents behavioral and emotional well-being. Journal of Family Psychology, 26, 263-273. DOI: 10.1037/a0027427.

El Nokali, N., Bachman, H. J., & Votruba-Drzal, E. (2010). Parent involvement and childrens academic achievement and social development in elementary school. Child Development, 81, 988-1005. 

El Nokali, N.E., Bachman, H. J., & Votruba-Drzal, E. (2010) Parent involvement and childrens academic and social development in elementary school. Child Development, 988 - 1005.

Accepting Graduate Students

Yes

Program(s)

CV