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Lisa Ellen Wolf-Wendel

School of Education - Educational Leadership & Policy Studies
Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies
Doctor of Philosophy, Higher Education, The Claremont Graduate School
Primary office:
Joseph R. Pearson Hall
Room 214 H
University of Kansas
1122 West Campus Rd
Lawrence, KS 66045-3101


Lisa Wolf-Wendel, PhD is a Professor of Higher Education in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies. She is also the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies in the School of Education. Dr. Wolf-Wendel joined the faculty of the University of Kansas (KU) in 1995.

Dr. Wolf-Wendel earned her undergraduate degree in Psychology and Communications from Stanford University in 1987. She earned her doctorate in Higher Education from The Claremont Graduate University in 1995.

Dr. Wolf-Wendel is the author of numerous books and refereed journal articles on topics related to equity issues in higher education. Her research focuses on faculty issues including studies of the academic labor market, the needs of international faculty and faculty from historically underrepresented groups, and several recent research projects pertaining to the policy response of academic institutions in the wake of demands for dual career couple accommodations and work/family balance. She is an editor of the ASHE Higher Education Monograph Series, and serves on the Editorial Board of many publications in higher education including Research in Higher Education, The Journal of College Student Development, and the Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice.

Program Affiliation:




Related information:


Doctor of Philosophy, Higher Education, The Claremont Graduate School

Master of Arts, Higher Education, The Claremont Graduate School

Bachelor of Arts, Psychology and Communications, Stanford University



ELPS 883:College Student Development

ELPS 884:Research on College Students

ELPS 886:Theory and Practice in Higher Education (Capstone)

ELPS 970:Theory and Research in Administration

ELPS 998:The American Faculty

Teaching Interests

  • College Student Development
  • Faculty Issues
  • College Student Access and Retention
  • Qualitative research methods

Research Interests

  • Equity issues in higher education
  • Women faculty
  • Work/family balance
  • Dual career academic couples
  • International faculty
  • Women's colleges
  • Special focus institutions
  • Gender and racial/ethnic diversity issues as they pertain to faculty, students, administrators
  • And institutions of higher education
  • Special area of interest focuses on dual career academic couples and work/life balance for faculty members.

Selected Publications

Ward, K. & Wolf-Wendel, L. E. (2012). Academic Motherhood: Managing Work and Family, Piscataway, NJ : Rutgers University Press.

Kim, D. B., Wolf-Wendel, L. & Twombly, S. (2011). Predicting International Faculty Satisfaction and Productivity Using Alternative Definitions and Institutional Characteristics. Journal of Higher Education, 82(6), 720-747.

Wolf-Wendel, L. Ward, K. & Kinzie, J. (2009). A Tangled Web of Terms: The Overlap and Unique Contribution of Involvement, Engagement, and Integration to Understand College Student Success. Journal of College Student Development, 50(4), 407-428.

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Selected Awards & Honors

Higher Education Monograph Series Editor

School of Education Faculty Service Achievement Award
University of Kansas

Sally Loyd Casanova Distinguished Alumni Recognition
Claremont Graduate University

Gene A. Budig Teaching Professorship
University of Kansas
2009 - 2010

President Faculty Senate
2009 - 2010

W.T. Kemper Fellowship for Recognition in Teaching and Advising Excellence
University of Kansas

School of Education Faculty Research Achievement Award
University of Kansas

10th among public universities for its master’s and doctoral programs
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#1 public program in nation for special education
—U.S. News & World Report
Assists public schools and other partners in all 105 Kansas counties
$938,377 in scholarship funds awarded to 420+ students
Research expenditures of $36,804,773 for 2011-12
Research from KU’s largest grant, the $24.5 million SWIFT project, assists educators, children, and families across the United States
The award-winning special education faculty published 140 refereed articles, 11 books, and 60 chapters in 2015-16
Students with intellectual disabilities are participating in KU undergraduate programs through a grant-funded KU special education program
Researchers on a $3.5 million grant are collecting data on an innovative reading program designed to teach reading to students with the most significant disabilities in seven Kansas school districts
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
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