Founder/Learning Community Director

Andrew Pendola is an Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership at Auburn University. His research is focused on the intersection of school policy, educator mobility, and educational equity. Specifically, he examines large scale patterns of educator preparation, recruitment, transfer, and turnover. He currently teaches courses on school law, budgeting, politics, leadership ethics, and equity.

Prior to joining the faculty at Auburn, Dr. Pendola served as an 8th grade history teacher. He completed his M.A. in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and his doctorate in Educational Theory and Policy from the Pennsylvania State University.

Dr. Pendola runs the AED Research Lab and teaches QMER workshops



Founder/Data Center Director

Dr. Murrah is an Associate Professor of Quantitative Methods at Auburn University. He teaches introductory and advanced research methods courses in the College of Education. His expertise is in cognitive development and learning. 

His research is focused on understanding how our early experiences, motor learning, motivation, and emotions impact how we learn and think in formal and informal educational settings.

He uses large scale data sets including Early Childhood Longitudinal Studies (ECLS) and the National Longitudinal Study of Youth (NLSY), and is currently also working with the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) data.

Dr. Murrah is a Co-Founder of the Quantitative Methods in Educational Research (QMER) learning community, and is a co-director of the SCALES Lab.

Prior to joining Auburn University Dr. Murrah earned his Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Virginia, where he also completed a postdoctoral fellowship and worked as a research scientist.



 Research and Outreach Director

Clarissa Beavers is a doctoral student in the higher education administration program. 

She is a first-generation scholar who studied Telecommunications (B.A.) at Bowling Green State University and Educational Leadership (M.Ed) at Wright State University. Her time in higher education has been diverse across functional areas, and since being a graduate student she was encouraged to join the QMER community to strengthen her research method skills. She found the QMER community tremendously helpful, and now supports the QMER community as the Research and Outreach Director. 

Prior to enrolling at Auburn, Clarissa served students in central Ohio as an admissions counselor recruiting for dual enrollment at liberal arts and community colleges. When asked about her decision to attend graduate school, she shares ‘Auburn chose me’. In her rejuvenation time, she enjoys live music, deep southern cuisine, and documentaries. Check out more about Clarissa here:



Program Development Officer

Deja Trammell is a doctoral student in the Educational Psychology program at Auburn University. She specializes in Higher Education Administration with a focus on program development and evaluation. Her research interests incorporate culturally sustaining frameworks that inform research, teaching, and practice to improve access and inclusivity of underrepresented racial minorities in postsecondary environments. Her current focus is utilizing anti-deficit achievement framework to support the persistence of first generation African American students in higher education.

Prior to attending Auburn University, Deja received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Biology from Alabama State University and her Master of Social Work with a concentration in Health/Mental Health from Clark Atlanta University. She served as a financial advisor and program development coordinator increasing adult learners understanding and access to financial literacy in Metro Atlanta communities.

Deja is the Program Development Officer of the Quantitative Methods in Educational Research learning community. She serves as a graduate Assistant in the Auburn University Career Center and as an instructor for the First Year Seminar program.

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Research Project Manager

Program: PhD Administration and Supervision of Curriculum

Current Position: Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Educational Foundations,Leadership and Technology, Auburn University

Research Interest: Pedagogical leadership in Early Childhood Education, Numeracy in Early Childhood Education, Educational leadership.



Past Recruitment and Outreach Officer

Natalie Neugebauer is a doctoral student in the Educational Psychology program at Auburn. Her research interests encompass school choice decision making for parents of children with special needs, including charter schools, and the perceived barriers to social and educational inclusion for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Her current focus is examining the impact of proneness to self-conscious emotions on the social participation of children with ASD.

Prior to coming to Auburn, Natalie received her B.S. in Psychology from Georgia State University and worked as a full-time research assistant for Emory University’s School of Medicine. As part of her role as research assistant, Natalie managed the Education Sciences Research Core Lab at the Marcus Autism Center in Atlanta.

Natalie is the current Recruitment and Outreach Officer of QMER and a member of the SCALES Lab. She is also a graduate assistant in Auburn University Libraries’ Research and Instruction department.