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Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

Program Faculty

The success of our K-16 degree and certificate programs is the result of the research background, expertise, and practical experience in education brought by our faculty members.

Higher Education

  • Maria Adamuti-Trache has expertise in the sociology of higher education, with a particular interest in life course research, which explores the impact of gender, race/ethnicity, social class, immigrant status on educational and work trajectories.
  • James Hardy has expertise in quantitative research methodologies, and research interest in K-16 education, doctoral education, and teacher preparation.
  • Taryn Ozuna Allen's research interests focus on the educational experiences of traditionally under-represented student populations.
  • Barbara Tobolowsky focuses her research on student transitions and success from high school through college and media representations of higher education.
  • Yi (Leaf) Zhang is interested in better understanding how access to higher education affects student choice, mobility, and success across community college contexts and international venues.


K-12 Leadership

  • Carrie Ausbrooks has research interests in education law; program/unit assessment; organizational systems, theory and behavior; education policy and governance; and school choice and education reform.
  • Casey Brown served as a superintendent, principal, dean of instruction, and teacher before beginning her academic career. Her research agenda includes teacher and administrator certification policy, school leadership preparation, and campus crisis policy and procedures. 
  • Bradley Davis, who is a mixed methods researcher, focuses his research on issues of social justice. He is a former Texas public school educator.
  • Prior to his academic career, Lewis Wasserman was assistant superintendent in New York City and practiced law for 23 years, focusing on special education disputes.
  • Clinical faculty include Ernest Johnson (Assistant Chair of ELPS and coordinator of the MEd with principal certificate program) and Diane Patrick (coordinator of superintendent certificate program).

Higher Education Leadership

Another faculty member in the department includes Jeanne Gerlach (Associate Provost for K-16 Initiatives and Founding Dean of the College of Education) who has a strong background in higher education leadership.

  • Jeanne Gerlach’s research focuses on urban education, business/higher education partnerships, women in leadership roles, and governance in higher education.