Erickson, Ansley T. (ate11) | Teachers College Columbia University

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Erickson, Ansley
Assistant Professor of History and Education
Arts & Humanities

334G HMann

Office Hours:
Fall 2015: Tuesdays 4-6pm and Wednesdays 3-4pm; Students may make appointments via

Educational Background

MA, MPhil, PhD, Columbia University
BA, Brown University

Affiliated faculty member, Columbia University Department of History 

Affiliated faculty member, Institute for Urban and Minority Education

Ansley T. Erickson is a historian who focuses on educational inequality and urban and metropolitan history. She earned her Ph.D. in U.S. History from Columbia University. Her dissertation was awarded Columbia's Bancroft Dissertation Prize for 2010 and the History of Education Society's Claude A. Eggertsen Dissertation Prize for 2011. 
Erickson's forthcoming book, Making the Unequal Metropolis: School Desegregation and Its Limits (Chicago, 2016) examines the case of Nashville, Tennessee to reveal how schooling interacted with the political economy of the metropolitan landscape to make segregation and inequality and later to remake educational inequality in the desegregation years. 

With Professor Ernest Morrell of TC's Institute for Urban and Minority Education, Erickson leads the Educating Harlem project, a collaborative investigation into the history of education, broadly defined, in 20th century Harlem. Educating Harlem includes an edited volume, speaker series, scholarly conference, digital history project, and youth participatory history program.

Erickson was a National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellow in 2011-2013, and has been awarded dissertation and research fellowships from the Spencer Foundation, the Eisenhower Institute, and the Mrs. Giles A. Whiting Foundation. She currently serves on the editorial board of the History of Education Quarterly and Theory and Research in Education, and as a member of the History of Education Society Outstanding Book Prize committee.

Earlier in her career, Erickson taught history and conducted ethnographic research in New York City schools and was a project manager at two national school reform organizations. She also has experience in historical documentary film and public history consulting.

Ansley Erickson C.V.

Scholarly Interests

History of Education in the United States
Educational Policy
Educational Inequality
Urban and Metropolitan History

Selected Publications

Erickson, A. "Affordable Housing, Public Transit, A Mayoral Runoff, Racially Separated Schools. Welcome to Nashville - In 1971." Nashville Scene, August 13, 2015. 

Highsmith, A. and Erickson, A. "Segregation as Splitting and Joining: Schools, Housing, and the Many Modes of Jim Crow," American Journal of Education, August, 2015. 

Erickson, A. "Slavery and American Colleges: Historical Entanglements that Matter for Inequality Today," Teachers College Record, May 31, 2014. 

Erickson, A. "Historical Research and the Problem of Categories: Reflections on 10,000 Digital Notecards, in Jack Dougherty and Kristen Nawrotzki, eds. Writing History: How Historians Research, Write, and Publish in the Digital Age. (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2013) and

Erickson, A. "Building Inequality: The Spatial Organization of Schooling in Nashville, TN, after Brown." Journal of Urban History, Vol. 38, No. 2 (March 2012), 247-270.

Erickson, A. "The Rhetoric of Choice: Segregation, Desegregation, and Charter Schools." Dissent. (Fall 2011) and reprinted in Michael Katz and Mike Rose, eds. Public Education Under Siege. (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013) 

Research Support 

Provost's Investment Fund, Teachers College, Columbia, 2012-13

NAE/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2011-13

Clifford Roberts/Eisenhower Institute Dissertation Fellowship, 2009-10

Mrs. Giles A. Whiting Fellowship, 2009-10 (declined to accept Eisenhower)

Mellon Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellowship, 2007-2009

Spencer Dissertation Fellowship, 2007-9

Archival and Oral History Research Support

Buell Oral History Research Grant

Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library Moody Research Fellowship

Tennessee Historical Society Wills Research Grant

Other Support

Maxine Greene Foundation and the Fund for Teachers, for "Crossing Town: Brown's Legacy in Nashville."


Related Articles

The Rhetoric of Choice: Segregation, Desegregation, and Charter Schools

Writing in the fall 2011 issue of Dissent Magazine, TC's Ansley Erickson argues that a common thread links the current rhetoric of "school choice"and opposition to court-ordered busing for desegregation 40 years ago.


New Faculty Member Wins Bancroft Dissertation Prize

Ansley Erickson has received the prestigious Bancroft Dissertation Award, given by Columbia University's Graduate School of Arts and Sciences for outstanding Columbia dissertations in American History (including biography), diplomacy, or international affairs for outstanding Columbia dissertations in American History (including biography), diplomacy, or international affairs.


A Group of TC Faculty Condemns the Release of Teacher Evaluations Based on Student Test Scores

Group of TC Faculty Condemn the Release of Teacher Evaluations Based on Student Test Scores