Santa Clara University

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Phone: 408.554.4507
Room number: 120 T

Sara Soledad Garcia, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Education, Co-Director, Masters in Interdisciplinary Education - Teaching and Learning/Curriculum and Instruction

Sara Garcia grew up in Santa Paula, California. She received her B.A. in Spanish Literature from San Jose State University and taught high school in Oxnard, California. She received a single subject teaching credential from Cal Lutheran University. In 1976, she accepted a position at California State University Fullerton, in the School of Education and the Title VII Training Resource Center. In 1980, Professor Garcia completed graduate studies at UCLA in the English Department and received a Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) and applied linguistics. She completed a Masters in Education at UCLA from the Graduate School of Education in 1981. At UCLA, Professor Garcia worked as a research associate with the Center for the Study of Evaluation (CSE) and coordinated the Bilingual Credential Program for the Teacher Education Lab.

Dr. Garcia completed her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology at UC-Santa Barbara specializing in language development, cognition and learning theory. While at UCSB she supervised teacher credential candidates, held the position of lecturer in the Department of Chicano Studies, and taught at Santa Barbara City College. Garcia worked as a consultant with the California State Department of Education in linguistic assessment and is co-author of the Glossary of Bilingual Education Terms, an ERIC publication. She has published numerous articles and book chapters on teacher's cultural knowledge and self-narrative inquiry. Professor Garcia has a special interest in ballad studies and the intersection of culture, self-identity and social interaction theory applied to education.

In 2001, Professor Garcia as a Fulbright scholar, conducted an interdisciplinary action research project with schoolteachers and ecology researchers in the Chihuahua desert.  She edited a book based on the results of her study, which was published by the Instituto de Ecologia in Mexico in 2005. In 2011, she was awarded a Fulbright Specialist award to conduct a seminar on research methods and to assess faculty research projects at the Cundinamarca University in Bogota, Colombia. Two of her most recent publications on bilingualism and language policy appear online in the Forum on Public Policy, a journal by the Oxford University Roundtable.  Most recently, Professor Garcia's interests are on collaborative scholarship with an emphasis on environmental education and ethics in ecology. At Santa Clara University she directed the Teacher Education Program for seven years and created the Masters in Interdisciplinary Education linked to the CLAD credential program. She also received grants from Stanford University Service Learning Collaborative and the Irvine Foundation to conduct assessment of teacher education projects. Professor Garcia has been to El Salvador with the SCU Faculty Delegation and has presented professional papers in Mexico, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Germany, Hungary, Portugal, and Colombia.