Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Jayanti Owens

Jayanti Owens

Jayanti Owens

Mary Tefft and John Hazen White, Sr. Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs and Sociology

Areas of Interest: Stratification, education, gender, race/ethnicity, work and organizations, children and families, population health.


Jayanti Owens is an assistant professor of sociology and public policy at Brown University, and an affiliate of the Population Studies and Training Center. Owens completed a postdoctoral fellowship through the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health & Society Scholars Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Ph.D. in Sociology and Demography at Princeton University. Broadly, Owens’ research focuses on the causes of gender, racial/ethnic, and immigrant educational and labor market inequality. Owens’ work has appeared in journals including Sociology of Education, Social Science Research, and Ethnic and Racial Studies.


Owens’ current research addresses three puzzles: (1) How females’ advantage in early behavioral skills helps explain their growing advantage in educational attainment in the United States but why these skills do not translate into similar gains in the labor market; (2) Why African-American males and males from low-income backgrounds, especially those from families without a stably present father, are disproportionately suspended/expelled from school even controlling for their problem behaviors, and; (3) Why an ADHD diagnosis is associated with a large, negative effect on later academic performance for children with relatively mild levels of ADHD-related behaviors, but not those with more severe levels of ADHD-related behaviors.   


Owens, Jayanti and Heide Jackson. 2016. "Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Severity, Diagnosis, and Later Academic Achievement in a National Sample." (Forthcoming, Social Science Research).

Owens, Jayanti. 2016. "Early Childhood Behavior Problems and the Gender Gap in Educational Attainment in the United States." Sociology of Education (online).

Owens, Jayanti. 2014. “Racial/Ethnic Variations in the Consequences of Religious Participation for Academic Achievement at Elite Colleges and Universities.” Sociology of Religion 75(1): 80-112.

Massey, Douglas S. and Jayanti Owens. 2014. “Mediators of Stereotype Threat among Black College Students.” Ethnic and Racial Studies 37(3): 557-575.

Owens, Jayanti and Scott M. Lynch. 2012. “Black and Hispanic Immigrants’ Resilience against Negative-Ability Stereotypes at Selective Colleges and Universities in the United States.” Sociology of Education 85(4): 303-328. (Lead Article; Sociology of Education’s “Most Read Articles in May 2013”)

Owens, Jayanti and Douglas S. Massey. 2011. “Stereotype Threat and College Academic Performance: A Latent Variables Approach.” Social Science Research 40(2011): 150-166.

Owens, Jayanti. 2010. “Foreign Students, Immigrants, Domestic Minorities and Admission to Texas’ Selective Flagship Universities Before and After the Ban on Affirmative Action.” Peabody Journal of Education 85(4): 486-510. 


Advanced Statistics for Public Policy (Fall 2015); Sociological Research Methods (Spring 2016)