Sara Gable

Dr. Sara Gable
Working Title
Director of Institute of Public Policy
People Type
137-D Middlebush Hall
(573) 882-4628

Ph.D., Penn State University (Human Development and Family Studies, 1993)

Research Emphasis

National and state policy for child care and early education

Child health and development

Early numeracy and math learning


Sara Gable is the Director of the Institute of Public Policy in the Truman School of Public Affairs.  Her research interests center on child health, national and state policy for child care and early education, and young children’s quantitative development.  Her current research aims to improve school readiness among preschoolers at risk for school difficulties.  She is undertaking a series of experiments that integrate motor activity with counting and set-size labeling games to accelerate the onset of cardinal principle knowledge, the first milestone in children’s conceptual knowledge of the symbol system of numbers.  Additionally, from 2016-2019, Sara was the Faculty Fellow in the MU Office of Research and Economic Development and provided leadership for the university’s internal funding programs.

Selected Publications

Gable, S., Chang, Y., & Krull, J. L.  (2007). Television watching and frequency of family meals are predictive of overweight onset and persistence in a national sample of school-age children.  Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 107(1): 53-61.  

Gable, S., Rothrauff, T., Thornburg, K., & Mauzy, D.  (2007). Cash incentives and turnover in center-based child care staff.  Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 22, 363 - 378.   

Gable, S., Krull, J.L., & Chang, Y.  (2012). Boys’ and girls’ weight status and math performance from kindergarten entry through fifth grade:  A mediated analysis.  Child Development, 83(5), 1822-1839.  

Gable, S.  (2014). The States of Child Care:  Building a Better System.  New York, NY:  Teachers College Press (click here to read a review).

Policy Brief (April 2015).  America’s Fragmented Child Care and Early Education System

Arteaga, I., Heflin, C., & Gable, S.  (2016). The impact of aging out of WIC on food security in households with children.  Children and Youth Services Review, 69, 82-96.     

Brueggemann, A., & Gable, S. (2018). Preschoolers’ selective sustained attention and numeracy skills and knowledge. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 171, 138-147.   

Gable, S., Fozi, A. M., & Moore, A.  (in press).  A physically-active approach to early number learning.  Early Childhood Education Journal

Program Category Groups
PDF Documents