Cortney Rowland, Ph.D.

Co-Deputy Director
Cortney Rowland

Cortney Rowland, Co-Deputy Director

Cortney Rowland, Ph.D., is a principal technical assistance consultant at the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and serves as the co-deputy director of the GTL Center. With more than fifteen years of experience as a researcher, policy analyst, and technical assistance provider, Dr. Rowland specializes in educator effectiveness work, particularly teacher and principal human capital management systems. Most recently, she led a two-year initiative—the Collaborative for the Continuous Improvement of Educator Effectiveness Systems—supporting six states (Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Tennessee) in investigating ways to improve educator evaluation and professional support systems. She served on the working group charged with finalizing the Professional Standards for Educational Leaders (PSEL) and developed a toolkit to help states align and transition their current standards to the revised and updated PSEL. Dr. Rowland uses her extensive experience to coach and support other GTL Center project leads to monitor progress against outcomes and continuously improve products and services through client input and feedback.

At AIR, she leads a variety of educator effectiveness projects, including a Gates Foundation-funded project (Beyond Accountability) designed to improve, using inquiry cycles, the way that districts gather and apply evaluation system data to improve instructional practice. Dr. Rowland has also conducted research, policy analysis, and technical assistance for AIR’s Education Policy Center (EPC) and the Teacher Incentive Fund (TIF) Technical Assistance Center. She has a variety of publications concentrating on teacher and principal effectiveness and has presented at numerous state, regional, and national convenings on these topics.

Prior to joining AIR, Dr. Rowland worked at the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices, where she managed the Education Division’s school leadership work. Before that, she worked for several years at Learning Point Associates, where she led a variety of projects including content development for the Center for Educator Compensation Reform (CECR), teacher evaluation system development for the Ohio Department of Education, and was principal investigator for the Iowa pay-for-performance pilot project evaluation. Dr. Rowland earned her M.A. in Sociology from Bowling Green State University and her Ph.D. in Sociology from Loyola University-Chicago.

Cortney's Recent Highlights

Project: The Collaborative for the Continuous Improvement of Educator Effectiveness Systems

Resource: Improving Instruction for All Students Through Meaningful Support in Educator Evaluation: State Reflections from the Collaborative for the Continuous Improvement of Educator Effectiveness Systems. Center on Great Teachers and Leaders. February 2019.

Report: Beyond Accountability: Improving the Use of Information to Support Teaching and Learning Through Continuous Improvement Cycles. American Institutes for Research. October 2018.

Policy Brief: Principal Professional Development: New Opportunities for a Renewed State Focus. Education Policy Center at the American Institutes for Research. February 2017.

Resource: Aligning Leadership Standards to the Professional Standards for Educational Leaders: A Toolkit. Center on Great Teachers and Leaders. October 2016.