As the summer and the NAEP Doctoral Student Internship begin to wind down, another intern took the time to share some insights and reflections with the NAEP research community about themselves and their work! Danielle Siegel has been spending her summer engaging in methodological developments and conducting secondary analysis using NAEP data, but she found the time to answer a few questions.
- Where are you joining the internship from?
I am joining from Davis, California.
- What is your educational background?
I am a rising third-year Ph.D. student in quantitative psychology at the University of California, Davis. My projected graduation year is 2026. I received my B.A. in psychology and my M.A. in social psychology from Cal Poly Humboldt.
- What are your research topics of interest?
Broadly, my interests are in measurement and structural equation modeling. I’m interested in ways researchers choose to form proxies of unobservable constructs (e.g., choosing a composite vs. a sum score to model life satisfaction), as well as under what circumstances one type of proxy might be more appropriate than another.
- What current projects are you working on outside of the internship that you’re excited about?
We’re currently working on a proof-of-concept for a statistical technique to determine when a composite is more appropriate than a common factor, or vice versa.
- What drew you to the internship?
I liked the idea of working with data and an analysis model that is directly impactful on things like policymaking. It is the most influential data I’ve ever worked with. I was also interested in the experience of conducting research outside of academia.
- How do you hope to use what you learn in the internship?
I’ve learned a lot about large-scale data analysis and methodology that I can incorporate into my own research. I’ve also never worked fully remotely before and have been learning a lot of useful techniques for productivity and time management that I’m excited to continue after the internship.
- What hobbies/special interests/fun facts would you like to share?
I love all things fiber arts! During the pandemic, I taught myself how to embroider, knit, crochet, macrame, and needle-felt.
The NAEP R&D team is looking forward to further getting to know our interns! Stay tuned to the NAEP R&D Hub as we continue to put a spotlight on our interns, alumni, and other vital members of the NAEP R&D community. Consider checking out the NAEP Doctoral Internship Program and keeping an eye out for open applications for the next cohort of graduate students working directly with NCES researchers on large-scale assessment data. Keep checking in on the NAEP R&D Hub and sign up for our mailing list to be the first to know when applications are open!