Robert Pianta, PhD

Robert Pianta, PhD, is Dean of the UVA School of Education and Human Development, Batten
Bicentennial Professor or Early Childhood Education, Professor of Psychology, and founding director of
the Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning at the University of Virginia. Dr. Pianta‘s
research and policy interests focus on the intersection of education and human development. In
particular, his work has been influential in advancing the conceptualization of teacher-student
interactions and relationships and documenting their contributions to students’ learning and
development. He has authored or co-authored more than 300 articles, 50 chapters, and 10 books and
led research and training grants totaling over $60 million. Dr. Pianta has led research and development
on measurement and improvement tools that help teachers interact with students more effectively and
that are used widely in the United States and around the world. Dr. Pianta received a BS and an MA in
Special Education from the University of Connecticut and a PhD in Psychology from the University of
Minnesota. He began his career as a special education teacher and joined the University of Virginia
faculty in 1986. He is past Editor of the Journal of School Psychology and associate editor for AERA Open.
An internationally recognized expert in both early childhood education and K-12 teaching and learning,
Dr. Pianta regularly consults with federal agencies, foundations, universities, and governments. He was
named a Fellow of the American Education Research Association, received the Distinguished Alumni
Award from the University of Minnesota in 2016, and his scholarly accomplishments led to his election
to the National Academy of Education.

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