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Dr. Karly Ford

Dr. Karly Ford
Phone: 8148659756
Office Address:
405E Rackley Building
University Park, PA 16802
Campus: University Park


Assistant Professor of Education (Higher Education)


Education Policy Studies


Center for the Study of Higher Education (CSHE)


Higher Education
Comparative and International Education

Other Penn State Affiliations



Karly Sarita Ford is an Assistant Professor in the Education Policy Studies department at The Pennsylvania State University. Her research focuses on the sociology of higher education and race/racism in data collection. She received a Masters of Education in International Education Policy from Harvard University in 2007 and a Ph.D. in Sociology of Education from New York University in 2014. Ford is the co-editor of a reader now in its fourth edition: The Structure of Schooling: Readings in the Sociology of Education. Her work has appeared in Educational Researcher, Journal of Higher Education, Higher Education, Minerva, Race, Ethnicity and Education, Research in Social Stratification and Mobility and The Journal of Diversity in Higher Education among others. Ford's research interests are Higher Education, Sociology of Education, International Comparative Education, and the social processes of collecting and representing demographic (race, gender, class) data.

Areas of Expertise

Education Levels


Educational Studies

Comparative Ed
Educational Theory
International Ed

Higher Education

Higher Education

Social Issues

Race and Ethnicity

Office Hours

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Representative Publications

2020                Rosinger, Kelly, Karly Ford and Junghee Choi. Holistic Admissions. (In press: Journal of Higher Education)

2020                Ford, Karly, Kelly Rosinger, Junghee Choi and Gabriel Pulido. Towards Gender Inclusive Postsecondary Data.                             (Accepted: Educational Researcher)

2020                Fernandez, Frank, Baker, David., Munoz, Ismael, Ford, Karly., The Secret of American Science Capacity: Mass                            Higher Education and STEM PhD Production. (Accepted: Minerva)

2020                Ford, Karly and Leandra Cate. The Discursive Construction of International Students in the United States:                                    Prestige, Diversity and Economic Gain. Higher Education.

2020                Holland, Megan and Karly Ford. Legitimating Prestige through Diversity: How Higher   Education Institutions                            Represent Ethno-Racial Diversity Across Levels of Selectivity. Journal of Higher Education. 1-30                                        

2020                 Ford, Karly, Junghee Choi and David P. Baker. Cognitive Skills and the Relationship between College Majors                             and Earnings. Industry and Higher Education. Vol 34, (6) 410-420

2020                Ford, Karly, Ashley Patterson and Marc Johnston- Guerrero. Monoracial Normativity In University Websites:                              Systematic Erasure And Selective Reclassification of Multiracial Students. Journal of Diversity in Higher                                      Education  DOI: 10.1037/dhe0000154

2020                Ford, Karly, Kelly Rosinger and Qiong Zhu.  What Do We Know About Race Unknown?Educational                                          Researcher. Vol 49 (5) 376-381

2020                Ford, Karly. Marrying Within the Alma Mater: Understanding the Role of Same-University Marriages in                                      Educational Homogamy. Sociological Research Online. Vol. 25(2) 254-272                      

2019                Ford, Karly.  Observer-Identified Race and Ethnicity Data: Validity Threat. Educational Researcher. 48(6), 378-                          381.

2019                Rosinger, Kelly & Karly Ford. Pell Grant Versus Income Data in Postsecondary Research Educational                 Researcher. 48(5), 309-315.


2019                Ford, Karly & Ashley Patterson. “Cosmetic Diversity”: University Websites Transforming Race Categories to Serve Diversity Goals.  Journal of Diversity in Higher Education. 12(2), 99.