Dr Reana Maier
Reana Maier is a Canadian academic who recently moved to Ireland to take up a postdoctoral researcher position at UCC in the Institute for Social Sciences in the 21stCentury. She previously held a postdoc in the Department of Sociology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada. Dr. Maier has a BA(Hons) and an MA in Sociology and received her doctorate in Education from the University of Cambridge in 2015. Research interests include education equity (particularly regarding race and class), education policy, migration and integration, and citizenship education. Her interests outside academia include rowing, ballet, baseball, films, travel, and reading.
As an early career researcher, Dr. Maier has begun to develop a portfolio of equity-related research projects on education using a wide range of methodological approaches. While a postdoc at McMaster, she worked with Dr. Karen Robson, an Ontario Research Chair in Educational Achievement and At-Risk Youth, and participated in statistical analyses of large-scale datasets to examine the determinants of transitioning from secondary school to university and college. These papers paid attention to historically underprivileged and underrepresented groups in post-secondary education, such as lower income students, students with special education needs, and students from certain racial backgrounds, and how these characteristics affected their chances of educational advancement. Dr. Maier also conducted qualitative studies of student experiences of transferring between educational institutions and race/equity related education policy in select Canadian provinces. Currently, she is working on the EU-funded Horizon 2020 IMMERSE project, which examines the socio-educational integration of refugee and migrant children. The project has six country partners: Ireland, Greece, Germany, Belgium, Italy, and Spain. Dr. Maier, working under the Principal Investigator for the Irish research team, Dr. Shirley Martin, has used qualitative data from focus groups and interviews with key stakeholders in the Irish education system, such as students, parents, teachers, education administrators, and policy-makers, to develop holistic integration indicators that will form the basis of a survey. Large-scale data collection using this survey will take place in 2020 and 2021, and the subsequent dataset and analysis can then be compared across all IMMERSE partner countries to form a more complete picture of this vulnerable population in Europe.