Tatiana  Melguizo

Tatiana Melguizo

Professor of Education

PhD, Stanford University

Contact info

melguizo@usc.eduPhone: 213 740 3635

Fax: 213 746 8142WPH 702GCurriculum Vitae


Higher Education


Expert in higher education, affirmative action, community colleges, and college graduation rates.

Tatiana Melguizo


Dr. Tatiana Melguizo is an Professor in the USC Rossier School of Education. She received a Ph.D. in Economics of Education from Stanford University and a M.A. in Social Policy from the London School of Economics.  She works in the field of economics of higher education. She uses quantitative methods of analysis to study the association of different factors, educational programs, as well as public policies on the persistence and educational outcomes of minority and low-income students. 

Her work has been published in Educational Researcher, Education Evaluation and Policy AnalysisTeachers College RecordThe Journal of Higher EducationThe Review of Higher EducationResearch in Higher Education, Journal of Research in Educational Effectiveness, AERA Open, Higher Education and World Development. Dr. Melguizo has received grants from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), National Science Foundation (NSF), Spencer foundation, AERA, the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation, College Futures Foundation, Jack Kent Cooke, Nellie Mae and Lumina foundations and from the Association for Institutional Research, National Postsecondary Education Cooperative (AIR/NPEC).



  • Educ 709: Finance in Higher Education
  • Educ 522: Accountability
  • Educ 536: Inquiry II


Recent Grants


  • National Science Foundation: Math: EAGER                  $299,753 Oct 2015 – Sept 2017
  • US Department of Education $550,000 May 2010 – April 2012
  • Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Education Research Training Grants.
  • Principal Investigators Tatiana Melguizo and Johannes Bos in collaboration with George Prather. Evaluating the Effects of Basic Skills Mathematics Placement on Academic Outcomes of Community College Students.


  • Buffett Foundation                                                          $6,200,000, July 2015–Dec 2020

  • Co-Principal Investigator. A mixed-methods examination of a comprehensive college transition and success program for low-income students. Principal Investigator: Adrianna Kezar, Co-Principal Investigators: Darnell Cole and Kristan Venegas.

  • Spencer Foundation $50,000, June 2014–May 2015
  • Principal Investigator. Defining and estimating value-added models in higher education: Empirical estimations in Colombia. Co-Principal Investigators: Fabio Sanchez and Gema Zamarro.
  • Spencer Foundation $40,000, March 2011–February 2012
  • Principal Investigator. The relationship between college costs, local labor market conditions and persistence among community college students. Co-Principal Investigator: Fabio Sanchez.
  • Gates Millennium Scholars Research Program $10,000 May 2008-January 2009
  • Principal Investigator. A portrait of the characteristics of two cohorts of recipients and non-recipients of the Washington State Achievers (WSA) program who first attended a two-year college.
  • Gates Millennium Scholars Research Program $10,000 May 2007-April 2008
  • Principal Investigator. Are Minorities More Likely to Graduate from College if they attend More Selective Institutions? Evidence from a cohort of recipients and non-recipients of the Gates Millennium Scholarship (GMS) program.
  • Spencer Foundation $40,000, August 2006–May 2007
  • Principal Investigator. The relationship between college costs, local labor market conditions and persistence among community college students. Co-Principal Investigators: Greg Kienzl and Mariana Alfonso.

Selected Publications

  • Recent Papers in Peer-Reviewed Journals

  • Melguizo, T., Kosiewicz, H., Prather, G., & Bos, H. (2014).  How are community college students assessed and placed in developmental math? Grounding our understanding in reality. Journal of Higher Education.

  • Melguizo, T., & Wolniak, G. (2012). The earnings benefits of majoring in STEM fields among high achieving minority students. Research in Higher Education, 53(4), 383-405.

  • Melguizo, T., & Chung, A. (2012). College aid policy and competition for diversity. The Review of Higher Education, 35(3).

  • Melguizo, T. (2011). A review of the theories developed to describe the process of college persistence and attainment. In J.C. Smart (Ed.), Higher Education: Handbook of Theory and Research.

  • Melguizo, T., Kienzl, G., & Alfonso, M. (2011). Comparing the educational attainment of community college transfer students and four-year rising juniors using propensity score matching methods. The Journal of Higher Education, 82(3), 265-291.

  • Melguizo, T., Bos, H., & Prather, G. (2011). Is developmental education helping community college students persist? A critical review of the literature. American Behavioral Scientist, 55(2), 173-184.

  • Melguizo, T., Sanchez, F.J., & Jaime, H. (2011). The association between financial aid availability and the college dropout rates in Colombia. Higher Education, 62(2), 231-247.

  • Melguizo, T. (2010). Are students of color more likely to graduate from college if they attend more selective institutions? Evidence from the first cohort of recipients and non-recipients of the Gates Millennium Scholarship (GMS) program. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 32, 230-248.

  • Ngo, F. & Melguizo, T.  (forthcoming). How can placement policy improve math remediation outcomes? Evidence from experimentation in community colleges. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis.

  • Melguizo, T., Bos, H., Ngo, F., Mills, N., & Prather, G. (forthcoming).  Using a regression discontinuity design to estimate the impact of placement decisions in developmental math. Research in Higher Education.

  • Fong, K., Melguizo, T., & Prather, G. (2015). Increasing success rates in developmental math: The complementary role of individual and institutional characteristics. Research in Higher Education.

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