Christopher M. Whitsel, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Sociology
Office: Minard Hall 428C16
- Ph.D., Sociology, Indiana University, 2009
- M.A. Central Eurasian Studies, Indiana University, 2006
- M.A., Sociology, Indiana University, 2004
- B.A., Social Sciences, Bethel College, 1998
Dr. Christopher M. Whitsel joined the department of Sociology and Anthropology in fall of 2009.
His research interests stem from his life experiences in Russia as an exchange student and in Uzbekistan as a volunteer teaching English. He witnessed first-hand significant differences in family, government structure, economic circumstances, school organization and many other aspects of social life. The whole society was experiencing tremendous changes because of the collapse of the Soviet Union. His research is part of his continuing effort to understand the effects of post-Soviet transition on the society.
His research focus has been education and inequality of access in post-Soviet Central Asia. More specifically, his work highlights barriers that families face in sending their children to school and the ways that community differences constrain their decisions. In addition to his academic endeavors, Dr. Whitsel has worked with international organizations like UNICEF-Tajikistan on projects about social aspects of poverty and the Soros Foundation on projects with early childhood education in Tajikistan.
Dr. Whitsel spent the 2013-2015 academic years on leave working at a newly founded university in Kazakhstan, Nazarbayev University, to develop their sociology program.
Whitsel, Christopher M. 2009. “Family Resources, Sitting at Home, and Democratic Choice: Investigating Determinants of Educational Attainment in Tajikistan” Central Asian Survey 28:29-41.
Whitsel, Christopher M. & Weeda Mehran. 2010. “School, Work and Community-Level Differences in Afghanistan and Tajikistan: Divergence in Secondary School Enrollment of Youth” Central Asian Survey 29:501-519
Whitsel, Christopher M. 2011. “Compulsory Policy Change and Divergence in Educational Attainment in Four Former-Soviet Republics” European Education: Issues and Studies 43:56-75.
Whitsel, Christopher M. 2011. “Counting Costs: The Effects of Informal Costs and Corruption on Educational Attainment in Tajikistan” Problems of Post-Communism 58:28-38.
Whitsel, Christopher M. “Sex, Urban/Rural, and Minority Differences in Educational Attainment in Soviet and Post-Soviet Tajikistan.” forthcoming in International Studies of Sociology of Education
Research and teaching specializations:
- International-Comparative Sociology
- Research Methods
- Stratification/ Inequality
- Sociology of Education
- Central Eurasia