Dan Rothstein is co-director of The Right Question Institute (RQI), a nonprofit organization whose work derives from an original insight named by parents in low-communities about a key obstacle to effective participation: not knowing what to ask. Dan, co-Director Luz Santana and colleagues have worked for more than two decades creating simple teaching tools that make it easier for all people, no matter their level of income or education, to develop key learning and advocacy skills. Rothstein and Santana are co-authors of Make Just One Change: Teach Students to Ask Their Own Questions (Harvard Education Press: 2011), which has been translated into five languages and led to the adoption of RQI’s Question Formulation Technique by more than 300,000 teachers in 140 countries all over the world. RQI’s methods have proven effective in a range of areas: from an NIH-funded study on how to increase patient activation to increasing parent participation in children’s education (featured in a book co-authored by Rothstein and Santana: Partnering with Parents to Ask the Right Questions: Building Strong School-Family Partnerships).
Dan has been a keynote speaker and featured presenter at, among others, Harvard Medical School’s Symposium on the Science of Learning; Brandeis University’s Center for Teaching and Learning; the Library of Congress; and leading technology companies such as Microsoft and Google. RQI’s work has been highlighted in various media, including NPR’s Here and Now, KQED, The Atlantic Monthly, and The Boston Globe. Dan is a graduate of Harvard College and worked as a youth worker before earning a doctorate from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where he was an editor of the Harvard Educational Review. He has been a postdoctoral fellow at Ben-Gurion University in Israel and was the only non-academic in his cohort chosen as a National Academy of Education/Spencer postdoctoral fellow. He is currently a co-principal investigator (Co-PI) on a National Science Foundation EAGER grant to improve doctoral students’ question-asking abilities.