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Frances Lawrenz

Associate Vice President for Research
Ph.D., University of Minnesota

Educational Psychology
174 EdSciB
56 East River Rd

Tel: 612/625-2046

Science and mathematics program evaluation, assessment instrument development, quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, mixed methods.

Research Interests

My major research focus is science and mathematics program evaluation. My evaluations utilize a variety of techniques to best fit the needs of a given situation and usually involve mixing methods in a variety of ways. I presently am involved in the evaluation of several national science and mathematics programs. I am interested in instrument development and in distinguishing among various types of assessments those that are most appropriate for a given situation.

Courses I teach
(all EPSY courses)

EPSY 5243—Principles and Methods of Evaluation
EPSY 5247—Qualitative Methods in Educational Psychology
EPSY 8247—Advanced Interviewing and NVIVO


Selected Publications

  1. Lawrenz, F. Science Program Evaluation. In N. Lederman and (Eds.) Review of Research in Science Education Abell, S. K., & Lederman, N. G. (Eds). (2007). Handbook of Research on Science Education. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

  2. Lawrenz, F., Fleming, M. Trajectories of Science Education Program Evaluation in North America, in K. Tobin and WM Roth (Eds.), World Science  Education: North America, NY: Sense Publishers, 2009.

  3. Sweet, R. Hananel, D and Lawrenz, F.  A New Approach to Validation Reliability and Study Design in Technical Skills.  Archives of Surgery, accepted 2009

  4. Toal, S., King, J., Johnson, K., and Lawrenz, F.  The unique character of involvement in multi-site evaluation settings.  Evaluation and Program Planning, in press 2009

  5. Lawrenz, F. Wood, N., Kirchhoff, A., Kim, N., and Eisenkraft, A. Variables affecting physics achievement.  Journal of Research in Science Teaching in press, 2009  Wood, N., Lawrenz, F., and Haroldson, R.  A Judicial Look at the Culture of Dealing. Accepted by Journal of Research in Science Teaching, in press 2009

  6. Hanssen, C., Lawrenz, F., and Dunet, D.  Concurrent Meta evaluation: A critique, American Journal of Evaluation, 2008, 29 (4):572-82.

  7. Huffman, D., Thomas, K., and Lawrenz, F. A Collaborative Immersion Approach to Evaluation Capacity Building,  American Journal of Evaluation, 2008, 29 (3): 358-368.

  8. Lawrenz, F and Sobotka, S. “Empirical Analysis of Current Approaches to Incidental Findings” in Empirical  Analysis of  Current Approaches to Incidental Findings, Edited volume of Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics, Eds Susan Wolf, 2008, 36 (2): 249-255.

  9. Huffman, D., Thomas, K and Lawrenz, F. Science and mathematics instruction in a reform-based teacher preparation program, School Science and Mathematics, 2008, 108(4), p. 137-148.

  10. Dunet, D., Sparling P., Hersey, J., Williams-Piehota, P., Hill, M., Hanssen, C., Lawrenz, F., and Reyes, M., A new  Evaluation tool to obtain practice-based evidence of worksite health promotion programs, Preventing  Chronic Disease, 2008, 5 (4): 1-13.

  11. Hong, Z., Lin, H., and Lawrenz, F. Promoting single-Parent Children’s Attitudes Toward Science and Science  Performance through Extracurricular Science Intervention in Taiwan, International Journal of Science  Education, 2008, 30 (4): 469-493.

  12. Lawrenz, F. Science Program Evaluation.  Review of Research in Science Education.   Abell, S. K., & Lederman, N. G. (Eds).  (2007).  Handbook of research on science education.  Mahwah, NJ:  Lawrence Erlbaum.

  13. Appleton, J., Lawrenz, F., Craft, E., Cudmore, W., Hall, J., and Waintraub, J. A model for materials development: Combining applied development processes with theory.  Journal of Science Education and Technology,  2007, 16:491-99

  14. Lawrenz, F., Gullickson, A. and Toal, S. Dissemination: Handmaiden to evaluation use, American Journal of  Evaluation, 2007, 28(3): 275-289.

  15. Lawrenz F. and Toal S. A few tweaks to the toolkit.  Measurement: Interdisciplinary Research and Perspectives, 2007, 5(2-3):195-198.

  16. Lawrenz, F. Huffman, D. and Gravely, A. Impact of the collaboratives for excellence in teacher preparation (CETP) program.  Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 2007, 44 (9):1348-1369.

  17. Clarkson, L., Robelia B., Chahine, I., Fleming M., Lawrenz, F., Rulers of Different Colors:  Inquiry into  Measurement, Teaching Children Mathematics, 2007, 14 (1):34-39.

    Graduate-Professional Teaching Award for her contributions to graduate and professional education, 2002