Ken Frank


Ken Frank

  • Title: Professor
  • Email:    Phone: 517-355-9567
  • Office: Erickson Hall Room 462

Degree: University of Chicago, 1993


Kenneth Frank received his Ph.D. in measurement, evaluation and statistical analysis from the School of Education at the University of Chicago in 1993. He is MSU Foundation professor of Sociometrics, professor in Counseling, Educational Psychology and Special Education; Fisheries and Wildlife, and adjunct (by courtesy) in Sociology at Michigan State University. His substantive interests include the study of schools as organizations, social structures of students and teachers and school decision-making, and social capital. His substantive areas are linked to several methodological interests: social network analysis, causal inference and multi-level models. His publications include quantitative methods for representing relations among actors in a social network, robustness indices for sensitivity analysis for causal inferences, and the effects of social capital in schools and other social contexts. Dr. Frank’s current projects include how beginning teachers’ networks affect their response to the Common Core, how schools respond to increases in core curricular requirements, cognitive linkages among aspects of knowledge, the diffusion of knowledge about climate change, and how the decisions about natural resource use in small communities are embedded in social contexts.

Associated Programs: College of Education, Fisheries and Wildlife, Department of Counseling, Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability, and the Education Policy Center
Research Areas: Quantitative Methods, Social Networks, Social Capital, Organizations, Education, Environment
Selected Publications:

Frank, K.A., Muller, C., Mueller, A.S., 2013. The Embeddedness of Adolescent Friendship Nominations: The Formation of Social Capital in Emergent Network Structures.  American Journal of Sociology, Vol 119(1):216-253. Media hits: Atlantic; Huffington Post; Huffington Post (Op-ed); US News and World Report; Yahoo; Health Day; RedOrbit; The Times of India; MSUToday: Psych Central: Positions and Promotions; Deccan Chronicle: wood radio: Fox Chicago: local news channels (south Carolina): Science Daily; National Science Foundation

Frank, K.A., Muller, C., Schiller, K., Riegle-Crumb, C., Strassman-Muller, A., Crosnoe, R., Pearson J. 2008. “The Social Dynamics of Mathematics CourseTaking in high school.” American Journal of Sociology, Vol 113 (6): 1645-1696.

Frank, K. A., Zhao, Y., and Borman (2004). Social Capital and the Diffusion of Innovations within Organizations: Application to the Implementation of Computer Technology in Schools." Sociology of Education, 77: 148-171.

Frank, K.A. & Yasumoto, J. (1998). "Linking Action to Social Structure within a System: Social Capital Within and Between Subgroups." American Journal of Sociology, Volume 104, No 3, pages 642-686

Crosnoe, Robert; Riegle-Crumb, Catherine; Field, Sam; Frank, K.A.; Muller, Chandra. 2008. “Peer Group Contexts of Girls' and Boys' Academic Experiences.” Child Development. Vol. 79(1): 139 – 155.

Crosnoe, Robert, Anna Strassman-Mueller, and Frank, K.A. 2008. “Gender, Body Size, and Social Relations in American High Schools.” Social Forces 86: 1189-1216.

Curriculum Vitae: Download