Curriculum Vitae

Mariana Barragan Torres

Social Research Methodology

Department of Education

University of California, Los Angeles


2022 University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)

Ph.D., Education - Social Research Methodology

Dissertation: A Comparative Study of Teaching Standards and Perspectives of Classroom Practices in Mathematics in México, Chile and Colombia

Advisor: Jose-Felipe Martinez, Ph.D.

Dissertation Committee: Dr. Courtney Bell, Dr. Minjeong Jeon, Dr. Jose Felipe Martinez, Dr. Lucrecia Santibañez, Dr. Jim Stigler.

2015 Stanford University

M.A. International Comparative Education

Advisors: Susanna Loeb, Ph.D.

Martin Carnoy, Ph.D.

2013 Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM)

M.A. Applied Economics

2012 B.A. Economics

Advisor: Emilio Gutierrez, Ph.D.


Measurement and Evaluation; Assessment; Research Use; Teaching and Instructional Quality; Classroom Practices; Teacher Effects; Access and Equity; Educational Reform; Education Policy; Evidence-Based Policy


Barragan Torres, M., Cashdollar, S., Wang, Y., & Bates, M. (2022). Trends in School Instructional Modality During the 2020-21 School Year. Learning During the Pandemic in Illinois Series. Chicago, IL: Illinois Workforce and Education Research Collaborative (IWERC), Discovery Partners Institute, University of Illinois.

Cashdollar, S., Wang, Y., Barragan Torres, M., & Bates, M. (2022). Does School Instructional Modality Predict Average School Achievement? Learning During the Pandemic in Illinois Series. Chicago, IL: Illinois Workforce and Education Research Collaborative (IWERC), Discovery Partners Institute, University of Illinois.

Cashdollar, S., Barragan Torres, M., Wang, Y., & Bates, M. (2022). Does Student Instructional Modality Predict Student Achievement? Learning During the Pandemic in Illinois Series. Chicago, IL: Illinois Workforce and Education Research Collaborative (IWERC), Discovery Partners Institute, University of Illinois.

Hoffman, K. S., Barragan Torres, M., & Wotipka, C. M. (2021). Cross-National Variation in School Reopening Measures During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Aera Open, 7, 23328584211010180.

Darling, F., & Barragán Torres, M. (2021). Estrategias comunitarias de resolución de problemas matemáticos en una comunidad maya en Yucatán. Revista Latinoamericana De Estudios Educativos, 51(1), 59-90.

Bell, C., Qi, Y., Witherspoon, M., Howell, H., & Barragan-Torres, M. (2020). The TALIS Video Study Observation System. TALIS Video Study and Global Teaching InSights. OECD Publishing.

Bell, C., Castellano, K., & Barragan-Torres, M. (forthcoming). Re-envisioning observation rater training through the learning sciences: The TALIS Video Study.

Barragan-Torres, M. (2017). School and institutional effects on secondary education transitions in Mexico. International Journal of Educational Research, 85, 68-86. Doi:


Floca, M., Mungaray-Moctezuma, A., Matus, M., Barragan-Torres, M., Basulto, A., Razu, Z., & Porten, J.

(2017). 2016 Survey on Education and Migration in San Diego and Tijuana: 9th and 10th Graders. [Data file and code book]. La Jolla, CA: Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies. Retrieved from:

Orfield, G., Barragan-Torres, M, & Mordechay, K. (2016). Education and Inequality in a Cross-border Megalopolis. The Civil Rights Project, UCLA. Retrieved from:


Cashdollar, S., Barragan-Torres, M., Bates, M. (in progress). Learning During the Pandemic in Illinois. Manuscript in Preparation for Submission.

Barragan-Torres, M. (Revise and Resubmit). Predictive Validity Attributes of Teacher Entrance Exams in Mexico. Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy & Practice Journal.


Research Specialist, IWERC April 2022 – Present

Several collaborations across a range of a state-level research projects including the relation to investigating the relationship between instructional modalities and student learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, mapping several aspects of education and the workforce in Illinois, a descriptive level study on the Illinois Educator Preparation Profiles (IEPP), among others.

Postdoctoral Research Associate - IWERC Summer 2021- April 2022

Participated in the development of a long-term initiative seeking to involve communities across the state in contributing to IWERC’s research agenda by gathering their perspectives on what aspects of education matters most for each community. Collaborated in a state-level research project related to investigating the relationship between instructional modalities and student learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a long-term research project that will map several aspects of education and the workforce in Illinois. Completed a descriptive level study on the Illinois Educator Preparation Profiles (IEPP) that explores the characteristics of institutions that have IEPP programs and their scores, and how these relate to a range of factors. Submitted two proposals related to assessment that we are awaiting to fund to further our understanding of the use of interim assessments in the state. Designed a secondary comparative analysis on measures of effective schools currently used in Illinois.

Education by Experience Program Evaluation Fall 2019- June 2020

Under the direction of Dr. Christina Christie, Dean of the GSE&IS at UCLA, I designed the program evaluation of an after-school program for bilingual families in two school districts in Southern California. I designed and submitted the evaluation proposal and IRB protocol for the two school districts and UCLA as well as the evaluation instrument. The instrument consisted of a set of surveys for students and parents to evaluate the implementation and outcome of the program goals. As a result of the COVID19 pandemic, the implementation of the program has been suspended until further notice.

Observation Team – Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) Video Study

September 2016-June 2020

Under the leadership of Dr. Courtney Bell, I participated as a member of the observation team in the TALIS Video Study. During this four-year project, I participated in the development of the observation tool, the training of master raters and conducted a series of literature reviews on teaching and classroom practices from an international perspective. In addition, I participated in collaborative work for the writing of sections for the technical and policy reports as well as research papers on rater training and the design of classroom observation protocols.

Mexican Migration Field Research Project September 2015- June 2016

At the Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies at the University of California San Diego, I participated in the developed a comparative analysis on the education systems in both sides of the border, Tijuana and San Diego, and their respective economic and labor market outcomes. Specifically, I led the development of research questions, research methods design, data collection and data analysis of student surveys of 6,500 students in 9th and 10th grades across 60 schools in San Diego County and the municipality of Tijuana. Results from the study showed that students in the two cities have strong connections to both sides of the border and big dreams for their futures that often involve living and studying in both countries. They rely heavily on their schools to help them prepare for the future, and a wide majority believe that schools and teachers do a good job of orienting them to the range of pathways available to them as they transition to adulthood.

Principal Investigators: Melissa Floca, Dr. Patricia Gandara and Dr. Gary Orfield

Ready4K Program at Stanford University October 2014- August 2015

As a Research Assistant for Dr. Susanna Loeb, the Principal Investigator, and graduate researchers Ben York, Ph.D., and Christopher Doss, PhD, I assisted in the design of Spanish and culture relevant texts for the Ready4K Program, which had the goal of the development of Math skills.

Various projects at ITAM’s Center for Development Economics January 2012 – March 2013

I assisted Dr. Emilio Gutierrez in several development economic research projects. These projects included an experimental study evaluating the impact of attendance to visual clinics on health outcomes, a quasi-experimental study for understanding the relationships between election results and other economic outcomes and studying the impact of micro-finance at the state level in welfare at the household level. As research assistant, I performed key aspects of the quantitative analyses for these projects and conducted rigorous literature reviews and a preliminary analysis of results.

Misreporting in Social Programs in Mexico: the case of Oportunidades January 2011- August 2011

As research assistant for Dr. Kensuke Teshima, I contributed to the data analysis of this paper which studied how households misreport their access to resources in social programs surveys.


Secretary of Education of Mexico March 2013- June 2014

Deputy Director and Advisor to the Secretary of Upper Secondary Education

Developed and managed multiple research projects and data analysis for the design and implementation of education policies

Elaboration of speeches, keynotes, and conference preparation based on research and data analysis for the Secretary of Upper Secondary Education

Redesigned the 2014 Annual National Survey of Labor Entry of Graduates from Upper Secondary Education

Coordinated design and implementation of the Mexican Dual Education Model in alliance with the National Enterprises Council. Coordinated impact evaluation of the program joint effort with the Inter-American Development Bank

Google Latin America, Government and Public Affairs January- December 2012

Program Manager/Consultant

· Coordinated the implementation of policy projects in the Mexican office of Google

Led the negotiation of AMIPCI’s participation in the initiative “El Buen Fin (Black Friday)” with entities of the government and multiple private corporate organizations

Coordinated education projects with the private company Mayahii that consisted in the curriculum design and implementation of a Google Tools training program in community centers in rural areas


2020-present Undergraduate Mentoring Fellowship Award – Social Research Methodology Division

2020-2022 Member: Mujeres Unidas por la Educación en Mexico.

Non-profit organization that fosters the quality of education for all students with a gender perspective.

2017-2019 Social Research Methodology Graduate Student Representative Committee

2018-2019 UCLA Triathlon President

2014-2015 Volunteer at Stanford’s Educational Interpretation team to facilitate teacher-parent conferences at Pescadero’s middle school and high school in order to promote teacher and parent engagement in the community

2010-2016 Co-founder: El Mexico que Queremos

Non-profit connecting students in public and private universities with experts from the public and private sectors to discuss the challenges of Mexico.

Coordinator of the book “Propuesta Ciudadana El México que Queremos” a citizen proposal considered for the National Development Plan in 2012

Present Reviewer for the following journals:

International Journal for Educational Development

Educational Researcher

Educational Assessment


Selected Presentations by date

Barragan-Torres, M. (2020). The Assessment of Predictive and Consequential Validity of Entrance Teacher Exams in Mexico: Implications for Teacher Evaluation Policies. Presentation selected for the Division D Graduate Student In-Progress Research Gala of the 2019 American Educational Research Association (AERA) Annual Conference. San Francisco, CA. April 2020.

Bell, C., Castellano, K., Yi, Q., & Barragan-Torres, M. Re-envisioning rater training through learning principles: The TALIS Video Study. Working paper to be presented in the Nacional Council of Measurement in Education. San Francisco, CA. April 2020.

Bell, C., Stecher. B., Schweig, J., Witherspoon, M., Qi, Y., & Barragan-Torres, M. Conceptual and Design Considerations in the Development of the Teaching and Learning International Survey Video Observation and Artifact Codes. Working paper presented in the American Education Research Association (AERA) Annual Meeting Conference, New York, NY. April 2018

Barragan-Torres, M. Examining the Instruments used for Teacher Performance Evaluation in Mexico: Considerations about Validity. Working paper presented in the Annual Comparative International Education Society (CIES) Conference, Mexico City, Mexico. March 2018.

Ponns, A., Guerrero, K., Leyva, Y., Matsubara, K., Bell, C., & Barragan-Torres, M. Collaborative Teaching Research in an International Context: Study Design and Pilot Implementation in Three TALIS-Video Countries. Working paper presented in the Annual Comparative International Education Society (CIES) Conference, Mexico City, Mexico. March 2018.

Barragan, M. Aspectos Psicométricos y Estadísticos de los Instrumentos de Ingreso y Desempeño de la Evaluación Docente Consideraciones sobre Interpretaciones y Validez. Encuentro Nacional de Becarios CONACYT en el extranjero. Washington, D.C. March 2018.

Barragan M. Who Goes Where? A Descriptive Study of the Power of Institutions and Schools in the Mexican education system. Conference title for paper “School and Institutional Effects on Secondary Education Transitions in Mexico” presented in the Annual Comparative International Education Society (CIES) Conference, Washington, D.C. March 2015.


2022 Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Fellowships for Minoritized Professionals in Educational Measurement

2020-2021 Non-Resident Fellow Center for U.S. Mexican Studies

2020-2021 UC-Mexus Advanced Doctoral Fellow

2020 AERA In-Progress Research Gala Paper

2019 UCLA Summer Teaching Fellowship

2017-2020 CONACYT / UC-Mexus Doctoral Fellowship

2016-2017 UCLA Student-Athlete of the Year

2016 UCLA GSE&IS Dean’s Scholar: Lee Memorial Fellowship

2016 National Youth Award (Government of Mexico)

2015 ITAM’s La Flecha Al Aire Javier Beristain Award

Awarded to the most distinguished education thesis

2015 Stanford’s Freeman Spogli Institute's Mentored Global Research Fellowship

2015 Stanford’s Center for Latin American Studies Research Grant

2014-2015 Stanford’s GSE Claudio X. Gonzalez Fellowship

2013 CONACYT/ITAM Scholarship


American Educational Research Association

Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness

National Council on Measurement in Education

Comparative International Education Society

Latin American Studies Association


Speak, write and understand Spanish and English fluently

Stanford, UCLA and University of Illinois CITTI (Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative) IRB certified

Software: STATA, R, ARGIS, MPLUS, HLM, and Python