Faculty

Gary Ritter

Gary Ritter

Endowed Chair in Educ. Policy

College of Education and Health Professions

(EDRE)-Education Reform

Phone: 479-575-4971

Fax: (479) 575-3196

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Gary Ritter is a Professor of Education Policy and holder of the Endowed Chair in Education Policy at the University of Arkansas. Since 2003, he has directed the University’s Office for Education Policy, which disseminates information on K-12 education for state policymakers, school leaders, and other interested constituents.  In this role, he has given formal testimony to the Arkansas legislature on numerous occasions. He has also testified before lawmakers in New York, Florida, and Oklahoma, as well as the Committee on Education and Labor of the U.S. House of Representatives on the issue of teacher quality.  

Ritter has been a faculty member at the University of Arkansas since 2000.  During his time at the University of Arkansas, he has served as principal investigator on more than 15 research grants that have generated more than $2.5 million in external funding. Students supervised by Ritter are now working in numerous organizations across the education policy landscape, including Abt Associates, Arkansas Department of Education, Arkansas Governor's Office, CREDO, the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching, NWEA, and the Walton Family Foundation.  Ritter’s research interests include alternative strategies for teacher compensation, alternative teacher training strategies, racial segregation in schools, and evaluating promising programs in economically disadvantaged schools.  

Ritter’s work has been published in Phi Delta Kappan, Review of Educational Research, Education Finance & Policy, Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, the Journal of Education Finance, and Education Next.  He authored “A Straightforward Guide to Teacher Merit Pay: What School Leaders Need to Know” which was published by Corwin Press in 2013.  Ritter earned a Ph.D. in Education Policy and Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania, where he also earned an MA in Public Policy from the Wharton School.  

  • K-12 Education Policy
  • Teacher Compensation and Teacher Evaluation
  • Teacher Recruitment, Training, and Licensure
  • Impacts of Charter Schools
  • Racial Integration in Public Schools
  • Access and Transition to Postsecondary Education
  • Education Policy
  • Assessment of Education Outcomes
  • Program Evaluation
  • Teacher Quality
  • Research Methods

University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia PA

  • Ph.D. in Education Policy, Graduate School of Education, 2000
  • MA in Public Policy and Management, Wharton School, 1996

University of Manchester, England

  • MA in Social Policy, 1993

John Carroll University, Cleveland OH

  • BA in Finance, 1990

Recent Publications (for a complete list, see attached CV above)

Books & Book Chapters

  • Ritter, Gary W.  & Egalite, Anna J.  2014.  Licensure & Certification, in D. Brewer and L. Picus (Eds.) Encyclopedia of Education Economics and Finance.  (pp. 434-437). Sage Publications: Thousand Oaks, CA.
  • Bowen, Daniel H. & Ritter, Gary W.  2014.  Schools: Catholic & Parochial, in D. Brewer and L. Picus (Eds.) Encyclopedia of Education Economics and Finance.  (pp. 672-676). Sage Publications: Thousand Oaks, CA.
  • Ritter, G. W., & Barnett, J.H.  2013.  A Straightforward Guide to Teacher Merit Pay: Encouraging and Rewarding Schoolwide Improvement. Corwin Press: Thousand Oaks, CA.
  • Ritter, G. W., Jensen, N.C., Kisida, B., & McGee, J.  2012. The Charges of Racial Segregation in Charter Schools are Overstated.  In Margaret Haerens and Lynn Zott (Eds.), Charter Schools: Opposing Viewpoints.   (pp. 186-196).  Detroit, MI: Greenhaven Press.  
  • Ritter, Gary W.  2009.  Education Reform in Arkansas: Hitting a Moving Target, in J. Parry and R. Wang (Ed.) Arkansas Politics. (pp. 562-586). University of Arkansas Press.
  • Winters, M.A., Ritter, G.W., Greene, J.P., and Marsh, R. 2009. Student Outcomes and Teacher Productivity and Perceptions in Arkansas.  In Matthew G. Springer (Ed.), Performance Incentives: Their Growing Impact on American K-12 Education.   (pp. 273-293).  Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press.  

Journal Articles - Peer-Reviewed

  • Maranto, R.A., Moore, S.B., & Ritter, G.W.  (Forthcoming). Does KIPP Grow Advantaged? Analyzing KIPP Campuses over Time. Journal of Public Management & Social Policy.
  • Lueken, M.F., Ritter, G.W., and Beck, D. 2015. Value-added in a virtual learning environment: An evaluation of a virtual charter school. Journal of Online Learning Research. 1(3), 305-335. (http://www.editlib.org/p/150993/)
  • Rose, C., Maranto, R.A., and Ritter, G.W. 2015. From the Delta Banks to Upper Ranks: An Evaluation of KIPP Charter Schools in Rural Arkansas.  Educational Policy. Published online before print July 24, 2015.  doi 0895904815586853.
  • Ritter, G.W., Jensen, N.C., Kisida, B., & Bowen, D.H. 2014. Urban School Choice and Integration: The Effect of Charter Schools in Little Rock.  Education and Urban Society. Published online before print August 7, 2014.  doi 0013124514546219
  • Maranto, R.A. and Ritter, G.W.  2014. Why KIPP is Not Corporate: KIPP and Social Justice. Journal of School Choice, 8, 2, 237-257.(http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/15582159.2014.910052#.U68JvfldV8E)
  • Ritter, G. W., Holley, M. J., & Jensen, N.C.  2013.  Does Classroom Technology Make a Difference? A Random Assignment Study in U.S. Classrooms.  Effective Education, 4,1, 87-110.
  • Ritter, Gary W.  2012.  Using the Proper Tool for the Task: RCTs are the Gold Standard for Estimating Programme Effects.  Journal of Children's Services. 7, 2, 148-152.
  • Barnett, J. H., Jensen, N. C., & Ritter, G.W. 2010. Dollars for Sense: Assessing Achievement Gaps in Arkansas in the Context of Substantial Funding Increases. Association of Mexican-American Educators (AMAE) Journal. 4(1), 39-47.
  • Ritter, G. W., Jensen, N.C., Kisida, B., & McGee, J.  2010. A Closer Look at Charter Schools and Segregation: Flawed Comparisons Lead to Overstated Conclusions.  Education Next, 10, 3, 69-73.
  • Ritter, G. W., Maranto, R. A., & Buck, S. 2009. Harnessing Private Incentives in Public Education. Review of Public Personnel Administration, 29,3, 249-269.
  • Ritter, G. W., Barnett, J. H., Denny, G. S., & Albin, G. R. 2009. The Effectiveness of Volunteer Tutoring Programs for Elementary and Middle School Students: A Meta-analysis. Review of Educational Research. 79, 1, 3-38.

Journal Articles - Other

  • Ritter, G. W. & Barnett, J.H.  (forthcoming May 2016). Learning on the Job: How Teacher Evaluation Can Foster Real Change. Phi Delta Kappan.
  • Ritter, G. W. & Ash, J. (forthcoming February 2016). How the “Promise” of a College Scholarship Transformed the Culture in El Dorado Schools. Phi Delta Kappan.
  • Shuls, J.V. and Ritter, G. W.  2013. Not an Either-Or: Traditional and Alternative Routes to Teaching are Both Good Ideas. Phi Delta Kappan, 94, 7, 8-13.
  • Ritter, G. W. & Shuls, J.V. 2012. If a Tree Falls in the Forest, But No One Hears …  Phi Delta Kappan, 94, 3, 34-38.
  • Ritter, G. W. & Jensen, N.C. 2010. The Delicate Task of Developing an Attractive Merit Pay Plan for Teachers.  Phi Delta Kappan, 91, 8, 32-37.
  • Buck, S., Ritter, G. W., Jensen, N.C., & Rose, C. P. 2010. Teachers Say the Most Interesting Things - An Alternative View of Testing.  Phi Delta Kappan, 91, 6, 50-54.

Academic Appointments

  • 2010 - Current :  Professor and Endowed Chair in Education Policy, Department of Education Reform, College of Education & Health Professions, University of Arkansas
  • 2005 - Current :  Associate Professor and Endowed Chair in Education Policy, Department of Education Reform, College of Education & Health Professions, University of Arkansas
  • 2004 :  Associate Professor (with tenure), Department of Educational Counseling, Leadership, and Foundations, College of Education & Health Professions, University of Arkansas
  • 2003 - 2008 :  Inaugural Faculty Member, University of Arkansas Clinton School for Public Service
  • 2001 - 2007 :  Faculty Member, Public Policy PhD Program (inter-disciplinary), Graduate School, University of Arkansas
  • 2000 - 2004 :  Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Counseling, Leadership, and Foundations, College of Education & Health Professions, University of Arkansas
  • 1996 - 1997 :  Instructor, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

Administrative Appointments

  • 2003 - Current :  Founder and Director, Office for Education Policy, College of Education & Health Professions, University of Arkansas
  • 2012 - Current :  Founder and Faculty Director, Arkansas Teacher Corps, College of Education & Health Professions, University of Arkansas
  • 2002 - 2007 :  Associate Director, Public Policy PhD Program (inter-disciplinary), Graduate School, University of Arkansas
  • University of Arkansas Alumni Association Faculty Distinguished Achievement Award for Public Service, University of Arkansas, 2012
  • COEHP Significant Research Award, College of Education and Health Professions, University of Arkansas, 2010
  • COEHP STAR Faculty Award (for overall work in Service, Teaching, Advising, and Research), College of Education and Health Professions, University of Arkansas, 2009
  • COEHP Outstanding Research Award, College of Education and Health Professions, University of Arkansas, 2002
  • Department Faculty Outstanding Research Award, Educational Leadership, Counseling, and Foundations Department, University of Arkansas, 2002
  • Selected for David L. Clark National Graduate Student Research Seminar in Educational Administration and Policy, 1999
  • Selected for the Spencer Foundation's Research Training Grant UCLA/PENN Scholars Exchange Program, 1999