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Caroline C. Sullivan

Clinical Associate Professor    

Doctor of Philosophy, 2007, The University of Texas at Austin
Master of Arts in Education, 2001, The University of Texas at Austin
Bachelor of Arts, 1993, The University of Texas at Austin
Bachelor of Science, 1993, Speech Communication, The University of Texas at Austin
Texas Secondary Lifetime Teaching Certificate: Spanish & Speech Communication, The University of Texas at San Antonio, 1996


Social studies education
Middle level education
Teacher education and mentorship


Caroline C. Sullivan is a clinical associate professor in the College of Education & Human Development’s Department of Middle and Secondary Education at GSU.

Her teaching and research agenda demonstrates an abiding interest in the socioconstructionist paradigm in contemporary classrooms and the intersections between critical socioconstructivism and social studies, middle level and teacher education. As a clinical associate professor, she engages in teaching and research that addresses the crux of theory and practice. She advocates for student success by designing and supporting equitable and rigorous learning environments both in the metro Atlanta area and internationally in South Africa, Denmark and other countries.

Sullivan is an affiliate faculty member of the minor in Urban Education as well as in the GSU Honors College and has served as chair of the College and University Faculty Assembly with the National Council of the Social Studies. Her work in the local community includes collaborations with the Atlanta Community Food Bank, Atlanta Public Schools and the Georgia Department of Education. Her instructional background includes eight years of teaching in middle and high schools in central Texas along with graduate professional development with The National Faculty.

She currently serves as director of Initial Teacher Preparation and coordinator of the Doctorate of Education in Curriculum and Instruction in the department. These appointments demand both that the knowledge and practices of social justice are active in our curriculum and that we use research based decision-making to support innovative curriculum and teaching.

Examples of her research include publications in authentic intellectual work, socioconstructivist pedagogy, ESOL, and urban/rural place-based education in the social studies. Accolades include Outstanding Faculty Teaching Award, 2014, College of Education, Georgia State University; Teacher of the Year, 2002; Best Paper, Research in Social Studies Education, Special Interest Group, American Educational Research Association, 2011.


Blankenship, W., Reidel, M., Sullivan, C.C. (2016). Teaching social studies to these students in this place. In A. Crowe and A. Cuenca (Eds.). Rethinking social studies teacher education for twenty-first century citizenship (pp. 41-57). New York: Springer.

Sullivan, C.C., Schewe, A., Juckett, E.M., Stevens, H. (2015). Strategically organic: One U.S. history teachers’ experience with class discussion. Social Studies Research and Practice, 10(2).

DeWitt, S., Patterson, N., Blankenship, W., Blevins, B., DiCamillo, Gerwin, D., L., Gradwell, J., Gunn, J., Maddox, L., Salinas, C. Saye, J., Stoddard, J., Sullivan, C.C. (2013). “The lower-order expectations of high stakes tests: A six-state analysis.” Theory and Research in Social Education, 41:3, 382-427.

Saye, J. W., Blevins, B., Blankenship, W., Chandler, P., Cude, M., DiCamillo, L., Sullivan, C.C., Wilson, E. K. (2013). “Authentic pedagogy in social studies classrooms and its relationship to student performance on state-mandated tests.” Theory and Research in Social Education, 41:1, 89-132.

Salinas, C., Blevins, B. Sullivan, C.C. (2012). “Critical notions of historical thinking: When official narratives collide with Other narratives.” Multicultural Perspectives, 14(1).

Sullivan, C.C. (2011). “Modeling the model: The use of classroom talk in teaching socioconstructivist pedagogy in a university setting.” Journal of Classroom Interaction, 46(2).

Salinas, C., Sullivan, C.C., Wacker, T. (2008). Curriculum considerations for late-arrival high school immigrant students: Developing a critically conscious World Geography Studies approach to citizenship education. Journal of Border Educational Research, 6(2).

Salinas, C. & Sullivan, C.C. (2007). Latina/o preservice teachers and historical positionality: Challenging the construction of the official school knowledge. Journal of Curriculum and Pedagogy, 4(1).