Shari Gardner

PRINCIPAL Education Researcher, SRI Education

Shari Gardner is an Education Researcher whose research involves using innovative teaching and learning approaches and digital tools to improve the quality and equity of STEM education for all students—especially students with disabilities, at-risk students, and students from groups underrepresented in STEM fields. She has experience researching and evaluating digital learning tools for use with underrepresented student populations; designing and implementing surveys and online interventions; and collecting and analyzing qualitative and quantitative data.

Gardner also convenes National Science Foundation grantee communities to promote shared learning and build relationships. She recently planned the PI meeting for NSF’s Education and Human Resources Core Research (ECR) grantees, as well as a workshop for the NSF Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science (INCLUDES) program, which aims to broaden participation in STEM by building and supporting a national network. Gardner also supports NSF’s cyberlearning community as part of the CIRCL team.

Before joining SRI, Gardner was a project coordinator in the Ecology of School Readiness Lab at the Bloustein School of Planning & Public Policy at Rutgers University. Prior to her experience at Rutgers, she gained extensive experience in K-6 classrooms, including as an associate first-grade teacher in the Miami, FL, area.


  • Ed.M., Statistics, Measurement, and Evaluation, Rutgers University
  • B.S.Ed., Elementary Education and Human and Social Development (Community Track), University of Miami


  • Education Researcher, SRI International, Washington, D.C., (2017-present)
  • Research Analyst, SRI International, Washington, D.C., (2015-2017)
  • Project Coordinator, Rutgers University, Ecology of School Readiness Lab (2014-15)
  • Graduate Research Assistant, Rutgers University, Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy (2013-14)
  • Associate First-Grade Teacher, Miami, FL (2012)

Current projects

  • Developing a K-12 STEM Education Indicator System
  • Building a Unified Research Agenda for K-12 Online Learning Environments to Improve STEM Outcomes for Students with Learning Disabilities and Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • CIRCL: Center for Innovative Research on Cyberlearning
  • EdReady

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