My research examines how educators are hired, retained and promoted, and the ways in which race and gender can differentially impact their career trajectories.

Sarah Guthery, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor

  • Faculty
Curriculum and Instruction

Dr. Sarah Guthery majored in economics as an undergraduate at Colorado State University. She taught preschool during college and decided to become a teacher. After training at Middlesex University in London, she moved to Texas, where she taught for nearly 10 years before returning to school to become an educator trainer.

Her love of economics and quantitative research, her passion for teaching, and her desire to work with students all came together in graduate school. She chose A&M-Commerce for the opportunity to do all the things she loves each day.

She also has a passion for travel and hopes to offer an education course for students to study abroad and experience international education.

A Conversation with Dr. Guthery

What would you tell a student who is thinking about attending A&M-Commerce?

A&M-Commerce is a wonderful place to become a teacher or further your career in education. Our students come from all over Texas, and we have a really unique online program where students can learn from anywhere in the world. Returning to school can add new energy and opportunities in your career you didn't even know existed.

What draws you to your discipline?

I was a classroom teacher, and I still love working with teachers. Education offers endless opportunities and growth, and I really enjoy working with people on their journey. My research examines how educators are hired, retained and promoted, and the ways in which race and gender can differentially impact their career trajectories.

What has been your favorite course to teach?

I developed a new course called teacher development and teacher retention. The course examines the life cycle of a teacher, the characteristics of each phase, and new ideas for investing in yourself, or investing in others. It was a lot of fun and I hope to teach it again soon.

Tell us about a project you are currently working on or recently completed.

I am currently working on a project that examines the timeline of assistant principals applying for promotion. I will be really interested to see the characteristics of assistant principals who apply for a principal job early and late in their careers.



  • Assistant Professor, Texas A&M University-Commerce, 2017-present
  • Adjunct Faculty, Texas A&M University-Commerce, 2014-present
  • Graduate Researcher, Texas Schools Project at UTD Education Research Center, 2015-2020
  • Graduate Researcher, Southern Methodist University, 2012-2017
  • Economic Analyst, Budd Center for Involving Communities in Education
  • Adjunct Faculty, University of North Texas, 2013
  • Gifted and Talented Teacher, Dallas ISD, 2007–2012
  • 1st Grade Teacher, Dallas ISD, 2005-2007
  • Kindergarten Teacher, White Rock North Private School, 2004-2005

Awards and Honors

Research Interests

  • Teacher and principal retention and promotion
  • Teacher labor market
  • Educational policy

Past and Present Professional Organizations

Selected Publications

  • Guthery, S., & Bailes, L. P. (In Press). Lowering barriers to entry: Does alternative certification attenuate new teacher pay? AERA Open.
  • Guthery, S., & Bailes, L. P. (2022). Building experience and retention: the influence of principal tenure on teacher retention rates. Journal of Educational Administration, (ahead-of-print),
  • Bailes, L. P., & Guthery, S. (2022). Disappearing Diversity and the Probability of Hiring a Non-White Teacher: An Analysis of Principals' Hiring Patterns in Predominantly White Schools. Journal of Education Human Resources, e20210033.
  • Guthery, S., & Richards, M.P. (2021). Severity and disproportionality of sanctions for illegal and unethical teacher behavior. Journal of Education Human Resources.
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