Michelle Hodara

Michelle conducts quantitative research on the high school to college transition through longitudinal data systems and uses mixed-methods to evaluate the impact of programs on students’ college readiness and success. She holds a Ph.D. in Economics and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University where she worked at the Community College Research Center. She has published and presented widely on major issues affecting community colleges, including how to improve the assessment and placement process for incoming students and the effects of developmental education on student outcomes. As a child of life-long educators and a former classroom teacher herself, Michelle is passionate about conducting practitioner-oriented research that supports efforts to close the achievement gap and improve the educational outcomes of all students.

Through my work with REL Northwest, I have the unique opportunity to bring research to practitioners and policymakers and be involved in evidence-based decisionmaking.

Senior Researcher - Postsecondary Readiness and Success


Areas of Work: 

Blog Posts

Expanding College Access: Promising Strategies to Boost Students’ Financial Aid Completion


January 20th, 2017

Financial aid helps expand college access but not all eligible students apply. This post explores the barriers students face in applying for aid and provides FAFSA-completion strategies for educators.

Looking at the Latest Community College Innovations and Reforms


January 15th, 2015

For many Americans, high tuition costs are a primary barrier to attending college and earning a postsecondary credential. President Obama’s new plan to make community college tuition-free seeks to alleviate this barrier, but the plan is not just about working with states to provide a more...