George Farkas

School of Education

B.A., Columbia, 1967, Mathematics

Doctor of Sociology, Cornell, 1973

Phone: (949) 824-3523
Fax: (949)824-9103

University of California, Irvine
2046 Education
Mail Code: 5500
Irvine, CA 92697

picture of George  Farkas

Social Ethnic Minority Education, Cognition, Behavior
URL Curriculum Vitae (PDF)
George Farkas received his B.A. in Mathematics from Columbia in 1967, and his Ph.D. in Sociology from Cornell in 1973. Prior to joining the faculty at UC Irvine he was Professor of Sociology, Demography, and Education at Pennsylvania State University. He was also Director of Graduate Studies for the Department of Sociology and Director of the Statistics Core for the Population Research Institute.

Professor Farkas’ research has made a major contribution to understanding the school achievement gap for low income and ethnic minority students. He has employed a range of statistical approaches and databases to examine the causes and consequences of this gap across varying age groups and educational settings, and was one of the first to show that the gap emerges in early childhood. His research has also examined students’ learning-related behaviors, and their causes, consequences, and relationship to the achievement gap. He has studied the life cycle earnings consequences of cognitive skill and behavioral differences between individuals, and has done research on gender differences. He has a particular interest in quasi-experimental statistical methodology.

Professor Farkas has authored or co-authored four books. His articles have appeared in The American Sociological Review, The American Journal of Sociology, Social Forces, Social Science Research, Research in Social Stratification and Mobility, Sociology of Education, Demography, Journal of Marriage and the Family, The American Educational Research Journal, The Harvard Educational Review, Teachers College Record, Brookings Papers on Educational Policy, The Elementary School Journal, The Journal of Learning Disabilities, The Journal of Special Education, The Journal of Early Childhood Research, Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology, The Journal of Youth and Adolescence, The Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Economics of Education Review, Econometrica, The Journal of Human Resources, The Journal of Labor Economics, The Journal of Econometrics, Sociological Methods and Research, and Structural Equation Modeling.

Professor Farkas’ research has been supported by the Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, The Spencer Foundation, The American Educational Research Association, The Corporation for National Service, The National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development, The National Science Foundation, The Rockefeller Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Labor.

Professor Farkas applied his knowledge and interest in the achievement gap to develop a successful tutoring program that improved reading skills of low-income, minority, and limited English proficient elementary school students. This tutoring program, Reading One-to-One, was widely implemented throughout the country, and helped invent President Clinton’s “America Reads” initiative.

Professor Farkas was elected to the Sociological Research Association in 1996, and was recently elected to the organization’s executive committee. He will serve as President in 2010. He was the editor of the Rose Monograph Series of the American Sociological Association from 1996 to 1999, and served on the ASA’s publications committee at that time. He has served on the editorial boards of the American Sociological Review, Social Science Research, Evaluation Review, and the American Journal of Education.
Publications Li, W., Farkas, G., Duncan, G.J., Burchinal, M.R., Vandell, D.L. (Forthcoming). “Timing of High Quality Childcare and Cognitive, Language, and Pre-Academic Development.” Developmental Psychology.
  Keys, T.D., Farkas, G., Burchinal, M.R., Duncan, G.J., Vandell, D.L., Li, W., Ruzek, E. A., & Howes, C. (Forthcoming). “Preschool center quality and school readiness: Quality effects and variation by demographic and child characteristics.” Child Development.
  Hillemeier, M. M., Morgan, P. L., Farkas, G., & Maczuga, S. (2013). “Quality disparities in child care for at-risk children: Comparing Head Start and non-Head Start settings.” Maternal and Child Health. 17 (1): 180 – 188.
  Morgan, P., Farkas, G. Hillemeier, M. and Mazuga, S. (2012). "Are Minority Children Disproportionately Represented in Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education?" Educational Researcher 41 (9): 339 – 351.
  Morgan, Paul, George Farkas, and Qiong Wu. (2012). “Do Poor Readers Feel Angry, Sad, and Unpopular?” Scientific Studies of Reading 16 (4): 360 – 381.
  Morgan, Paul, George Farkas, and Qiong Wu. (2011). “Kindergarten Children’s Growth Trajectories in Reading and Mathematics: Who Falls Increasingly Behind?” Journal of Learning Disabilities (September) 44: 472 – 488.
  Silver, Eric, Stacy Silver, Sonja Siennick, and George Farkas. (2011). “Bodily Signs of Academic Success: An Empirical Examination of Tattoos and Grooming.” Social Problems 58 (4): 538 – 564.
  Zheng, B., Warschauer, M., & Farkas, G. (2013). Digital writing and diversity: The effects of school laptop programs on literacy processes and outcomes. Journal of Educational Computing Research.
  Hall, Matthew and George Farkas. (2011). "Adolescent Cognitive Skills, Attitudinal/Behavioral Traits, and Career Wages." Social Forces 89(4): 1261-86.

Domina, Thad, AnneMarie Conley, and George Farkas. (2011). "The Case for Dreaming Big." Sociology of Education 84(2): 118-121.

Domina, Thad, AnneMarie Conley, and George Farkas. (2011). "The Link Between Educational Expectations and Effort in the College-For-All Era." Sociology of Education 84(2): 93-112.

Hillemeier, Marianne, Paul Morgan, George Farkas, and Steven Maczuga. (2011). “Perinatal and Socioeconomic Risk Factors for Variable and Persistent Cognitive Delay at 24 and 48 Months in a National Sample.” Maternal and Child Health Journal 15(7) October: 1001-1010.

Hall, Matthew, Emily Greenman, and George Farkas. (2010). “Legal Status and Wage Disparities for Mexican Immigrants.” Social Forces 89 (2): 491-513.

Hibel, Jacob, George Farkas, and Paul Morgan. (2010). “Who is Placed into Special Education?” Sociology of Education.83 (4) 312-332.

Hammer, Carol, George Farkas, and Steve Maczuga. (2010). “The Language and Literacy Development of Head Start Children: A Study Using the Family and Child Experiences Survey Database.” Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools 41:70-83.

Morgan, Paul, Michelle Frisco, George Farkas, and Jacob Hibel. (2010). “A Propensity Score Matching Analysis of the Effects of Special Education Services.” Journal of Special Education 43: 236-254.
  Farkas, George. “Closing Achievement Gaps.” Pp. 661 – 670 in D. Plank, B. Schneider, and G. Sykes (eds.) Handbook of Education Policy Research. American Educational Research Association.
  Morgan, P.L., G. Farkas, Q. Wu. “Kindergarten predictors of recurring externalizing and internalizing psychopathology in 3rd and 5th grade.” Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders 17: 67-79.
  Farkas, George. “Human Capital.” In Deborah Carr (ed.) Encyclopedia of the Life Course and Human Development. Macmillan Reference.
  Hillemeier, Marianne, George Farkas, Paul Morgan, Molly Martin, and Steven Maczuga. “Disparities in the Prevalence of Cognitive Delay: How Early Do They Appear?” Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology 23: 186-198.
  Burnett, Kristin and George Farkas. “Poverty and Family Structure Effects on Children’s Mathematics Achievement: Estimates from Random and Fixed Effects Models.” The Social Science Journal 46: 297-318.
  Morgan, Paul, George Farkas, Marianne Hillemeier, and Steve Maczuga. “Risk Factors for Learning-Related Behavior Problems at 24 Months of Age: Population-Based Estimates.” Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 37: 401-413.
  Hibel, Jacob, George Farkas, and Paul Morgan. “Who is Placed into Special Education?” To appear in Sociology of Education.
  Tach, Laura and George Farkas. 2006. “Learning-Related Behaviors, Cognitive Skills, and Ability Grouping When Schooling Begins.” Social Science Research 35 (4) (December): 1048 – 1079.
  Hammer, Carol, George Farkas, and Steve Maczuga. “The Language and Literacy Development of Head Start Children: A Study Using the Family and Child Experiences Survey Database.” To appear in Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools.
  Steward, Nicole R. and George Farkas. “Detailed Educational Pathways after Very Early Sexual Intercourse for Females.” To appear in Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health.
  Simon, Richard and George Farkas. “ Sex, Class, and Physical Science Educational Attainment: Portions Due to Achievement Versus Recruitment.” To appear in Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering.
  Hibel, Jacob, Susan Faircloth, and George Farkas. “Unpacking the Placement of American Indian and Alaska Native Students in Special Education Programs and Services in the Early Grades: School Readiness as a Predictive Variable.” To appear in Harvard Education Review 78 no. 3: 498 - 528.
  Morgan, P.L., M. Frisco, G. Farkas, and J. Hibel. “Effects of Special Education Services on Children’s Learning and Behavior: A Propensity Score Matching Analysis.” To appear in Journal of Special Education.
  Morgan, P.L., G. Farkas, and J. Hibel. “Matthew Effects for Whom?” To appear in Learning Disabilities Quarterly.
  Morgan, P.L., G. Farkas, P. A. Tufis, and R. A. Sperling. “Are Reading and Behavior Problems Risk Factors For Each Other?” To appear in J. Learning Disabilities 41 (no. 5): 417 – 436..
  Farkas, George. 2008. “How Educational Inequality Develops.” Chapter 4 in David Harris and Ann Lin (eds.) The Colors of Poverty: Why Racial and Ethnic Disparities Persist. New York: Russell Sage Foundation Press.
  Hall, Matthew and George Farkas. 2008. “Does Human Capital Raise Earnings for Immigrants in the Low Skill Labor Market?” Demography 45-Number 3 (August): 619 – 639.
  Bodovski, Katerina and George Farkas. 2008. “‘Concerted Cultivation’ and Unequal Achievement in Elementary School.” Social Science Research 37 (3): 903 – 919.
  Farkas, George. 2008. “Quantitative Studies of Oppositional Culture: Arguments and Evidence.” Pp. 312 - 347 in John Ogbu (ed.), Minority Status, Oppositional Culture, and Schooling. New York: Routledge.
  Farkas, George and Jacob Hibel. 2008. “Being Unready for School: Factors Affecting Risk and Resilience.” Pp.3-30 in Alan Booth and Ann Crouter (eds.), Disparities in School Readiness: How Families Contribute to Transitions into School. New York: Erlbaum.
  Durham, Rachel, George Farkas, Carol Scheffner Hammer, J. Bruce Tomblin, and Hugh W. Catts. 2007. “Kindergarten Oral Language Skill: A Key Variable in the Intergenerational Transmission of Socioeconomic Status.” Research in Social Stratification and Mobility 25: 294 – 305.
  Farkas, George and Rachel Durham. 2007. “The Role of Tutoring in Standards-Based Reform.” Pp. 201 – 228 in Adam Gamoran (ed.), Standards-Based Reform and the Poverty Gap: Lessons for “No Child Left Behind.” Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press.
  Bodovski, Katerina, and George Farkas. 2007. “Mathematics Growth in Early Elementary School: The Roles of Beginning Knowledge, Student Engagement, and Instruction.” The Elementary School Journal 108 (2): 115 – 130.
  Bodovski, Katerina and George Farkas. 2007. “Do Instructional Practices Contribute to Inequality in Achievement? The Case of Mathematics Instruction in Kindergarten.” The Journal of Early Childhood Research 5 (3): 301 – 322.
  Catherine Riegle-Crumb, George Farkas, and Chandra Muller. 2006. “The Role of Gender and Friendship in Advanced Course-Taking.” Sociology of Education 79 (July): 206 – 228.
  Farkas, George. 2006. Entry on “Literacy/Illiteracy” for the section on Education in George Ritzer (ed.) Encyclopedia of Sociology. Oxford, UK:Blackwell.
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Last updated 10/13/2015