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Erin McCauley is an advanced doctoral candidate in Sociology in the Departments of Sociology and Policy Analysis and Management at Cornell University where she is an affiliate of the Center for the Study of Inequality and the Cornell Population Center. Erin is a visiting graduate student and research assistant in the Department of Sociology at Duke University this academic year. Erin has accepted a position as an Assistant Professor of Sociology in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the University of California San Francisco for January of 2022.
Her research agenda has two primary foci: 1) exploring the criminal legal system as a structural and intergenerational determinant of health with implications for racial equity and 2) examining the intersectional risks of race and disability in institutional settings (with a specific focus on the education system, criminal legal system, and child welfare system). Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Fahs-Beck Fund for Research and Experimentation, and Policy Research Associates, among others, and has been featured in the American Journal of Public Health, Socius, Social Science and Medicine, and the Journal of Disability Policy Studies.
Erin's dissertation explores the intergenerational consequences of incarceration on teachers’ expectations and evaluations of children with incarcerated parents. The project relies on an experimental design where high school teachers are given a student biography with randomly assigned parental incarceration status and complete tasks related to evaluating student work, student competency, and student behavior. Initial results suggest that teachers evaluate students with incarcerated parents more leniently while providing more positive but less specific or useful feedback.