Michael J. Weiss
Senior Fellow
Postsecondary Education

Weiss has over a decade of experience evaluating programs designed to improve community college students’ success rates. He also conducts methodological projects to improve the quality of randomized controlled trials.

Weiss has been the principal investigator on seven grants funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences, five focused on randomized controlled trials of programs in postsecondary education and two focused on methods. He is currently the principal investigator of the Higher Education Randomized Controlled Trial Project and of randomized controlled trials of the City University of New York’s (CUNY’s) Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (now in its long-term follow-up phase), Encouraging Additional Summer Enrollment, and CUNY Start.

Weiss’s postsecondary and methodological work appear in peer-reviewed journals and he regularly presents at national conferences. He has been invited to give presentations at numerous conferences and organizations, including the Institute of Education Sciences and the U.S. Department of Labor. Weiss is the incoming editor-in-chief of the Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness (effective January 1, 2020). He holds a BS and a master’s degree in applied statistics from Cornell University and a doctorate in education policy from the University of Pennsylvania.



A Brief Synthesis of 20 Years of MDRC’s Randomized Controlled Trials

Methodological Publication

Attempting to Correct for Follow-Up Selection Bias

Methodological Publication

Detecting Follow-Up Selection Bias in Studies of Postsecondary Education Programs

Working Paper

A Randomized Controlled Trial Evaluation of a Developmental Education Reform at the City University of New York

Issue Focus

A Synthesis of Post-Program Effects in Higher Education

Working Paper

A Synthesis of Findings on the ASAP Model from Six Colleges Across Two States


Final Lessons from the EASE Project


Two Proven Strategies to Boost Summer Enrollment


Early Findings from a CUNY Start Evaluation


Using Behavioral Science to Encourage Postsecondary Summer Enrollment


Testimony Before the New York City Council Committee on Higher Education


Interim Findings from an Evaluation of a Computer-Assisted, Modular Approach to Developmental Math


Three-Year Effects of CUNY’s Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) for Developmental Education Students


Performance-Based Scholarships, Student Services, and Developmental Math at Hillsborough Community College

Other Publications

Weiss, Michael J., and Camille Headlam. Forthcoming. “A Randomized Controlled Trial of a Modularized, Computer-Assisted, Self-Paced, Approach to Developmental Math.” Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness.

Weiss, Michael J., Alyssa Ratledge, Colleen Sommo, and Himani Gupta. 2019. “Supporting Community College Students from Start to Degree Completion: Long-Term Evidence from a Randomized Trial of CUNY’s ASAP.” American Economic Journal: Applied Economics 11, 3.

Bloom, Howard S., Stephen W. Raudenbush, Michael J. Weiss, and Kristin Porter. 2017. “Using Multisite Experiments to Study Cross-Site Variation in Treatment Effects: A Hybrid Approach With Fixed Intercepts and a Random Treatment Coefficient.” Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness 10, 4: 817-842.

Weiss, M. J., Lockwood, J. R., & McCaffrey, D. 2015. " Estimating the Standard Error of the Impact Estimator in Individually Randomized Trials with Clustering." Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness.

Weiss, Michael J., Howard S. Bloom, Natalya Verbitsky-Savitz, Himani Gupta, Alma E. Vigil, and Daniel N. Cullinan. 2017. “How Much Do the Effects of Education and Training Programs Vary Across Sites? Evidence from Past Multisite Randomized Trials.” Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness (April 19): 1-34. Website: www.tandfonline.com.

Weiss, Michael J., Mary G. Visher, Evan Weissman, and Heather Wathington. 2015. “The Impact of Learning Communities for Students in Developmental Education: A Synthesis of Findings from Randomized Trials at Six Community Colleges.” Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis.

Weiss, Michael Joseph, Alexander Mayer, Dan Cullinan, Alyssa Ratledge, Colleen Sommo, and John Diamond. 2015. “A Random Assignment Evaluation of Learning Communities at Kingsborough Community College: Seven Years Later.” Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness 8, 2: 189-217.

Weiss, Michael J., Howard S. Bloom, and Thomas Brock. 2014. “A Conceptual Framework for Studying the Sources of Variation in Program Effects.” Journal of Policy Analysis and Management 33, 3.

Weiss, Michael J., and Henry May. 2012. “A Policy Analysis of the Federal Growth Model Pilot Program's Measures of School Performance: The Florida Case.” Education Finance and Policy 7, 1: 44-73.

Weiss, Michael J. 2010. “The Implications of Teacher Selection and the Teacher Effect in Individually Randomized Group Treatment Trials.” Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness 3, 4: 381-405.

Cole, Russell, and Michael J. Weiss. 2009. “Identifying Organizational Influentials: Methods and Application using Social Network Data.” Connections 29, 2: 45-61.