Janie Victoria Ward is Associate Professor of Education and Human Services and Chair of Simmons's Africana Studies department. In addition to teaching, she works with youth counselors, secondary school educators, and other practitioners in a variety of settings. Her research focuses on adolescent development, particularly the racial identity and moral development of African American girls and boys.
Ward has written and edited numerous books, chapters, and articles, and has made many media guest appearances. She is author of The Skin We're In: Teaching our Children to be Emotionally Strong, Socially Smart and Spiritually Connected (2000) and Gender and Teaching, with Francis Maher (2001). With her thesis advisor, Carol Gilligan, she co-edited Mapping the Moral Domain: A Contribution of Women's Thinking to Psychological Theory and Education. She also edited Souls Looking Back: Life Stories of Growing Up Black, a compilation of autobiographical statements written by African American, Caribbean, and black Canadian college students.
Ward is a research associate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education where she co-directs with Wendy Luttrell, Project ASSERT (Accessing Strengths and Supporting Effective Resistance in Teaching), a five-year, school-based research study and curriculum development project designed to guide and support urban teachers around gender, race, and class dynamics that impact their work with youth. Currently Ward is the site coordinator for the Boston Girls Sports and Physical Activity Project, funded by the Women's Sports Foundation, and she is a member of the project's evaluation and research team.