Bio


Arnetha F. Ball is the Charles E. Ducommun Endowed Professor (Emerita) in the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University. She is a Professor in the Curriculum Studies, Teacher Education, Educational Linguistics, and Social Sciences in Education Programs. She currently serves as Chair of the Cross Area Cross Disciplinary Program in Race, Inequality, and Language in Education (RILE) and is Interim Director of the University’s Program in African and African American Studies. Dr. Ball served as Secretary and Vice President of the American Educational Research Association’s (AERA) Division on Teaching and Teacher Education and was the 2011-2012 President of the association. She is also the past US Representative to the World Educational Research Association. Before entering the professorate, she taught in pre-school, elementary, and secondary classrooms for over 25 years and was the founder and Executive Director of "Children’s Creative Workshop," an early education center that specialized in providing premiere educational experiences for students from diverse backgrounds. There, she developed a professional learning community and provided professional development materials for her staff from 1974 to 1984. Her research is designed to advance transformation in teacher education programs and sociocultural theory through studies that integrate sociolinguistic, discourse analytic and ethnographic approaches to investigate ways in which semiotic systems in general, and oral and written language in particular, serve as a means for mediating teaching and learning in culturally and linguistically diverse settings. Her interdisciplinary program of research is conducted in complex learning environments that are faced with the promise and the challenges of improving education for diverse populations in three intersecting contexts: U.S. schools where predominantly poor and minoritized students are underachieving; U.S., South African and New Zealand teacher education programs that prepare teachers to teach students in culturally and linguistically complex classrooms; and community-based organizations that provide alternative education opportunities for academic and/or economic success. Her most recent research investigates the role of generativity and successful paradigms, principles and practices in preparing teachers for diversity across national boundaries in countries that serve large numbers of historically marginalized students—including the U.S., South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. Winner of the 2020 Miriam Roland Volunteer Service Award, 2019 Division K Legacy Award, and 2019 NCRLL Distinguished Scholar Award, Ball received the 2009 AERA Palmer O. Johnson Award and is the author/co-editor of seven books and numerous articles. She is a recently elected member of the National Academy of Education, Fellow of the American Educational Research Association, and has served as an Academic Specialist for the United States Information Services Program in South Africa and Distinguished Visiting Scholar in professional development programs in New Zealand and Australia. Recipient of the 2015 St. Clair Drake Teaching Award, Dr. Ball served as a trustee of the Research Foundation of the National Council of Teachers of English, Chair of the Executive Board of NCRLL, was the Inaugural Barbara A. Sizemore Distinguished Visiting Professor in Urban Education, and was the 2015 Co-convener for the World Educational Research Association’s International Research Network on Overcoming Inequalities in Schools and Learning Communities: Innovative Education for a New Century. Her recent work focuses on the development of blended online professional development that prepares teachers to work with diverse student populations and on the implementation of her Model of Generative Change (2009) in transnational contexts. She holds a B.A. and M.S. from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. from Stanford University.

Academic Appointments


Administrative Appointments


  • Interim Director, Program in African and African American Studies, Stanford University (2020 - Present)
  • Charles E. Ducommun Endowed Professor, Emerita (Active), Stanford University, Graduate School of Education (2019 - Present)
  • Charles E. Ducommun Endowed Professor, Stanford Graduate School of Education (2017 - 2019)
  • Chair, Race, Inequality and Language in Education Program (RILE), Stanford Graduate School of Education (2016 - Present)
  • Affiliated Faculty, CCSRE, Urban Studies, African & African American Studies (2000 - Present)
  • Co-Convener, World Educational Research Association’s International Research Network (IRN) (2015 - 2019)
  • Distinguished Visiting Scholar, University of Auckland (2014 - 2016)
  • Co-Director, Center for the study of Race, Ethnicity and Language (CREAL) (2011 - 2019)
  • Co-Convener, Inaugural Center Conference: “Racing Language, Languageing Race” (2011 - 2012)
  • Director, Program in African and African American Studies, Stanford University (2010 - 2013)
  • Barbara A. Sizemore Visiting Distinguished Professor of Urban Education, Consultant to Department of Instruction & Leadership, Duquesne University (2009 - 2010)
  • Professor of Education, Stanford Graduate School of Education (2007 - Present)
  • Associate Professor of Education, Stanford Graduate School of Education (1999 - 2007)
  • Research Associate and Instructor, Stanford University (1988 - 1991)

Honors & Awards


  • President’s Award for Excellence Through Diversity, Stanford University Office of Faculty Development, Diversity & Engagement (2020)
  • Miriam Roland Volunteer Service Prize, Stanford University Haas Center for Community Engaged Learning (2020)
  • Elected Membership, The National Academy of Education (2019)
  • Legacy Award, American Educational Research Association (AERA), Division K Award on Teaching and Teacher Education (2019)
  • Distinguished Scholar Award, National Council on Research in Language and Literacy (NCRLL) (2019)
  • Faculty Fellow, Haas Center for Community Engaged Learning (2017)
  • Charles E. Ducommun Professorship in Education Endowed Professor, Graduate School of Education, Stanford University (2017)
  • Chair, Race, Inequality, and Language in Education Program (RILE) (2017)
  • Distinguished Visiting Scholar, University of Auckland, Faculty of Ed (2015/2016)
  • St. Clair Drake Teaching Award, Stanford University (2015)
  • Faculty Research Fellow, Clayman Institute for Gender Research (2014-2015)
  • Visiting Distinguished Scholar, School of Cultural and Professional Learning, Queensland University of Technology, Australia (2014)
  • Fellow, American Educational Research Association (2010-Present)
  • Visiting Inaugural Barbara A. Sizemore Distinguished Professor of Urban Education, Duquesne University (2009)
  • Palmer O. Johnson Memorial Award, Most outstanding article published in an AERA journal in 2009 (2009)
  • Leadership in Diversity Award, National Council of Teachers of English (2009)
  • Member, National Academy of Education (2019)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations


  • Board of Trustees, Pacific Union College, Member, Angwin, California (2016 - 2019)
  • Co-Convener, World Educational Research Association’s IRN (International Research Network) Overcoming Inequalities in Schools and Learning Communities: Innovative Education for a New Century (2015 - 2019)
  • International Invited Guest Speaker, North West University, South Africa (2014 - 2015)
  • International Invited Keynote Speaker, Te Whare Wanānga O Awanuiārangi Indigenous University, Wakatāne, New Zealand (2013 - 2016)
  • Visiting Scholar, Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi, New Zealand (2013 - 2015)
  • International Invited Keynote Speaker, Hetherington Center for Educational Research, Hugh McKenzie Lecture, University of Wellington, NZ (2013 - 2014)
  • United States Representative & Council Member, World Education Research Association, Board of Directors (2012 - 2014)
  • Co-Director, Center for the study of Race, Ethnicity and Language (CREAL) (2011 - 2019)
  • President, American Education Research Association, Board of Directors (2011 - 2012)
  • Director, Program in African and African American Studies, Stanford University (2010 - 2013)
  • Consulting Professor, Urban Education and Teacher Education (2009 - Present)
  • Professor, Curriculum Studies, Teacher Education, and Educational Linguistics, Stanford University (2007 - Present)
  • Vice President, Division K, American Education Research Association (2007 - 2010)
  • President, National Conference on Research in Language and Literacy (2007 - 2008)
  • Board of Trustees, National Council of Teachers of English Research Foundation (2006 - 2009)
  • Vice-President, Special Interest Group on Writing and Literacies, American Education Research Association (2006 - 2007)
  • Associate Professor of Education & Literacy Program Director, Literacy, Language and Culture Program, University of Michigan (1998 - 1999)
  • Assistant Professor, University of Michigan (1992 - 1998)
  • External Program Evaluator, Los Angeles Unified School District (1991 - 1992)
  • Post Doctoral Fellow, University of Michigan (1991 - 1992)
  • Speech Pathologist, Audiology Associates of Dayton, OH (1986 - 1987)
  • Classroom Teacher, Aurora Elementary School, Aurora, IL (1984 - 1986)
  • Head Start Speech/Language Pathologist, . (1980 - 1984)
  • Founder, Administrative Director and Classroom Teacher, Children's Creative Workshop, Early Educational Center, Richmond, CA (1974 - 1984)
  • Ethnic Studies Resource Specialist, Speech Pathologist, Classroom Teacher, Richmond Unified School District, Richmond, CA (1972 - 1983)

Professional Education


  • BA, University of Michigan, Education (1971)
  • MS, University of Michigan, Speech Pathology (1972)
  • PhD, Stanford University, Language, Literacy & Culture (1991)

Research Interests


  • Curriculum and Instruction
  • Diversity and Identity
  • Equity in education
  • International and Comparative Education
  • Literacy and Language
  • Poverty and Inequality
  • Research Methods
  • Teachers and Teaching
  • Technology and Education

Current Research and Scholarly Interests


Language, Literacies, and Studies in Teacher Professional Development; research on the writing and writing instruction of culturally and linguistically diverse students; preparing teachers to teach diverse student populations in culturally and linguistically complex classrooms; linking sociocultural and linguistic theory to educational practice; and using the linguistic resources present among culturally diverse populations to enhance curriculum and instruction. She is currently conducting research on the implementation of her "Model of Generative Change" (Ball 2009) in pre-service teacher education, inservice teacher professional development, and a secondary pipeline program designed to "grow our own next generation of excellent teachers for urban schools." Over the last few years she has been collecting data in New Zealand, South Africa, Australia, and the United States on the preparation of teachers to work with historically marginalized populations. Her research on the use of writing as a pedagogical tool to facilitate generative thinking is ongoing and her most recent project looks at the development of blended online learning environments that are designed to prepare teachers to work effectively with diverse student populations in transnational contexts.

2020-21 Courses


Stanford Advisees


  • Doctoral Dissertation Advisor (AC)
    Efrain Brito
  • Doctoral (Program)
    Efrain Brito, Danielle Greene, CoCo Massengale, Jessica Stovall

All Publications


  • Realizing the Theory of Generative Change Using a Freirean Lens: Situating the Zone of Generativity within a Liberatory Framework Action in Teacher Education Brito, E., Ball, A. F. 2020; 42 (1): 19-30
  • Critical Counter-Narrative for Educational Equity Review of Research in Education Miller, R., Liu, K., Ball, A. F. 2020; 44: 269-300
  • Critical Reflection and Generativity: Toward a Framework of Transformative Teacher Education for Diverse Learners CHANGING TEACHING PRACTICE IN P-20 EDUCATIONAL SETTINGS Liu, K., Ball, A. F., Pigott, T. D., Ryan, A. M. 2019; 43: 68–105
  • Learning to Teach in a Complex Interconnected World THEORY INTO PRACTICE Ball, A. F. 2013; 52: 31-41
  • To Know Is Not Enough: Knowledge, Power, and the Zone of Generativity EDUCATIONAL RESEARCHER Ball, A. F. 2012; 41 (8): 283-293
  • Toward a Theory of Generative Change in Culturally and Linguistically Complex Classrooms AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH JOURNAL Ball, A. F. 2009; 46 (1): 45-72
  • Poverty and schooling: three cases from Australia, the United States, and Spain ASIA-PACIFIC JOURNAL OF TEACHER EDUCATION Lampert, J., Ball, A., Garcia-Carrion, R., Burnett, B. 2019
  • Teacher Professional Development in a Complex and Changing World: Lessons Learned from Model Teacher Education Programs in Transnational Contexts TEACHER EDUCATION FOR HIGH POVERTY SCHOOLS Ball, A. F., Lampert, J., Burnett, B. 2016; 2: 115–34
  • Introducing Raciolinguistics Raciolinguistics: How language shapes our ideas about race Alim, S., Rickford, J. R., Ball, A. F. 2016: 1-30
  • PREPARING TEACHERS FOR TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY SCHOOLS: ORGANIZATIONAL LEARNING AS A MEANS TO IMPROVE THE RELEVANCE OF TEACHER PREPARATION PROGRAMS TEACHING TEACHERS: APROACHES IN IMPROVING QUALITY OF EDUCATION Anthony, A., Ball, A. F., Saleh, I. M., Khine, M. S. 2011: 65–82
  • Preparing teachers for diversity in the twenty-first century Studying diversity in teacher education Ball, A. F., Tyson, C. A. 2011: 399-416
  • Studying diversity in teacher education Ball, A. F., Tyson, C. A. Rowman & Littlefield. 2011
  • Research on Literacy in Diverse Educational Contexts An Introduction RESEARCH IN THE TEACHING OF ENGLISH Kinloch, V., Ball, A., Franquiz, M. 2010; 45 (2): 93–96
  • With more deliberate speed: Achieving equity and excellence in education: Realizing the full potential of Brown v. Board of Education Ball, A. F. Blackwell Publishers. 2006
  • Multicultural strategies for education and social change: Carriers of the torch in the United States and South Africa Ball, A. F. Teachers College Press. 2006
  • African American literacies unleashed: Vernacular English and the composition classroom Ball, A. F., Lardner, T. SIU Press. 2005
  • Culture and language: Bidialectical issues in literacy: A response to Carol Lee Literacy development of students in urban schools: Research and policy Ball, A. 2005: 275-287
  • Lifting voices in the city EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP Busch, A. E., Ball, A. F. 2004; 62 (2): 64-67
  • Bakhtinian perspectives on language, literacy, and learning Ball, A. F., Freedman, S. W. Cambridge University Press. 2004
  • Chapter 3: Three decades of research on classroom life: Illuminating the classroom communicative lives of America’s at-risk students Review of research in education Ball, A. F. 2002; 26 (1): 71-111
  • Race, rhetoric, and composition (Book Review) COLLEGE COMPOSITION AND COMMUNICATION Book Review Authored by: Ball, A. F. 2000; 51 (4): 668-672
  • Teachers' developing philosophies on literacy and their use in urban schools - A Vygotskian perspective on internal activity and teacher change Vygotskian Perspectives on Literacy Research Centennial Conference Ball, A. F. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS. 2000: 226–255
  • Empowering pedagogies that enhance the learning of multicultural students Teachers College Record Ball, A. F. 2000; 102 (6): 1006-1034