Diane  Lee

Diane Lee

Cohort: 2020

USC Provost's PhD Fellowship


Erika Patall


Educational Psychology

Research Interest

Social-Emotional Development and Measurement, Academic Identity Development, Student Motivation and Autonomy Support, Emotion Regulation and Student Well-Being, Equitable Practices in Education

Diane Lee

Diane Lee is a Ph.D. student advised by Dr. Erika Patall in the Education Psychology concentration of the Urban Education Policy program. Diane serves as a member of the Motivation and Education Research Group, where she examines the ways in which teaching practices and classroom environment support or thwart student motivation. She is interested in developing social-emotional curriculum that engenders healthy emotion regulation and positive academic identities in traditionally marginalized student populations, and utilizing after-school programs as spaces for providing these supplemental practices.

Before coming to USC, Diane served as the Director of Education at the Turner Foundation in Santa Barbara, CA, where she worked with marginalized youth in an after-school setting. During her time as Director of Education, she utilized research to inform the education curriculum she built, led and coordinated staff development workshops on learning and adverse childhood experiences, built partnerships with other local non-profits and businesses, and more. She also worked as a graduate student researcher in the Social Cognitive Development Lab at UC Santa Barbara, where she examined social development in infants and young children; more specifically, how they think about power dynamics, race, and language membership. Her past work in the non-profit sector, as a developmental psychology researcher, and as a social psychology researcher informs her current research interests.


Professional Experience:

  • Director of Education, Turner Foundation (2019-2020)
  • Graduate Student Researcher, UC Santa Barbara (2017-2019)
  • Research Assistant, UC Irvine (2015-2017)

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