Patricia García-Arena is a principal researcher at AIR. Dr. García-Arena has more than 15 years of experience in educational research and technical assistance. Her research experiences and interests have included such topics as human development, literacy, cross-cultural child development studies, language socialization, assessment development, and the educational attainment of minority students. As a project director, she has extensive experience managing large federal contracts such as with the Institute of Education Sciences (IES). From 2016 to 2018, Dr. Garcia-Arena was the project director of the IES-funded Multisite Randomized Controlled Trial of Descubriendo la Lectura Study and the Project MELD: Math and English Language Development for English Language Learners. Along with extensive research experience, Dr. García-Arena has also applied her research knowledge education to technical assistance initiatives to support minority children and their families. From 2018-2019, she applied research to practice as a project director of the National Clearinghouse of English Language Acquisition commissioned by the Office of English Language Acquisition at the U.S. Department of Education.
Prior to her position at AIR, Dr. Garcia-Arena experiences include creating bilingual English language art assessments for preschoolers. She received her Ph.D. in psychological studies in education with an emphasis in child and adolescent development from Stanford University.