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Liz Gilkey



Liz Gilkey helps young adults identify life goals and make plans to achieve them. Liz brings over a decade of experience working with states, schools, districts, and national and local organizations to establish policy and practices that help students as they transition from high school to college and careers. As Lead Researcher at the Educational Policy Improvement Center, Liz led research projects that studied the academic, social, and emotional skills that predict success during and after high school. She is an expert in David T. Conley’s Four Keys of College and Career Readiness, and she co-developed and validated a survey to measure the Four Keys, called CampusReady, which has been administered to nearly 80,000 students, teachers, administrators, and school counselors nationwide. She has consulted on the NAEP, the SAT, ACCUPLACER, Oregon’s Assessment of Knowledge and Skills, and Oregon’s Kindergarten Assessment.

Liz served as lead analyst on the annual evaluation of the McNair Scholars program for the US Department of Education’s TRIO office between 2012 and 2017. The McNair program is aimed at increasing PhD attainment by students from historically underrepresented groups. The results of this evaluation are reported to Congress annually and used to allocate $36 million in program funding to over 150 universities.

In 2018, Liz opened Beyond College and Career Counseling, a coaching service that helps young adults identify long-term life goals and make strategic plans to achieve them, while building the academic, social, and emotional skills that predict success in college, careers, and life.


  • College and career readiness
  • Educational research and evaluation
  • Noncognitive assessment


  • PhD in Educational Methodology, Policy and Leadership from University of Oregon (2014)
  • JD with a focus in school law from University of Oregon School of Law (2008)
  • MA in Educational Leadership and Organizations from University of California, Santa Barbara (2005)
  • BA in English from Reed College (2001)

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