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Elizabeth Niehaus

Associate Professor & Graduate Faculty Chair

Ph.D., College Student Personnel Administration, University of Maryland, College Park, 2012
M.A., American Culture Studies, Washington University in St. Louis, 2007
B.A., Linguistics, University of Virginia, 2002

Dr. Niehaus's research focuses how we can create and improve educational environments to facilitate learning and development in higher education, with a particular emphasis on international higher education. Her current research focuses on faculty-led short-term study abroad programs, student engagement in tertiary education in Trinidad and Tobago, and the intersections of free speech and campus climate. Prior research projects have examined student learning and development in the context of alternative break programs and how graduate programs and early career work environments facilitate the development of research self-efficacy in scholars in the field of higher education and student affairs.

Areas of Expertise

  • Study Abroad
  • Free Speech
  • Research Methods
  • Internationalization of Higher Education
  • Student Affairs
  • Service-Learning/International Service-Learning

Dr. Niehaus advises PhD students in Educational Leadership and Higher Education and MA students in the Higher Education specialization. She looks for students with a clear vision for why they want to pursue a graduate degree as well as students with specific questions they are interested in exploring through research. Dr. Niehaus regularly teaches EDAD 842: College Students in America, EDAD 932: Global Issues in Higher Education, EDAD 984B: Qualitative Techniques – Case Study Research, and EDAD 984E: Qualitative Techniques – Grounded Theory in Educational Administration. She has also taught special topics and hands-on research seminars for both masters and doctoral students, including recent courses on the First Amendment, Free Speech, and Campus Climate; Controversies in Higher Education; Qualitative Data Collection; Qualitative Data Analysis; and Novel Approaches to Research on Student Experiences in Higher Education.

Dr. Niehaus’s current research projects include a mixed methods study of students’ moral reasoning around issues of free speech in college classrooms and a multiple case study of students’ experiences in virtual international courses.

Professional Highlights

Honors and Recognition
2020 University of California National Center for Free Speech and Civic Engagement Fellow2017, Excellence in International Research Award, ACPA Commission for Global Dimensions of Student Development2017, Service to the International Community Award, ACPA Commission for Global Dimensions of Student Development2012, AERA Division J Emerging Scholar2011, Outstanding Doctoral Student Award, University of Maryland College of Education
2019-Present, Associate Professor, Educational Administration, University of Nebraska-Lincoln2013-2019, Assistant Professor, Educational Administration, University of Nebraska-Lincoln2012-2013, Postdoctoral Research Associate, NSF Advance Grant, University of Maryland-College Park, College Park Maryland2012-2013, Assistant Director and Instructor, Master of Professional Studies in Leadership Education and Development (Navy LEAD), University of Maryland, College Park, College Park, Maryland2010-2012, Coordinator, Grants & Assessment, College of Education Office of International Initiatives, University of Maryland, College Park, College Park, Maryland2007-2010, Graduate Coordinator, Minor in Leadership Studies, University of Maryland, College Park, College Park, Maryland2007-2008, Facility Director, Kappa Alpha Theta Sorority, Gamma Mu Chapter2005-2007, Clinical Program Coordinator, Washington University in St. Louis School of Law, St. Louis, Missouri2004-2005, AmeriCorps VISTA, Ohio Campus Compact, The Ohio State University (Project Community)2002-2004, Campus Organizer/Assistant Organizing Director, California Public Interest Research Group
ACPA: College Student Educators InternationalAmerican Educational Research Association (AERA)Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE)NASPA: Student Affairs Administrators in Higher EducationInternational Association for Research in Service-Learning and Community Engagement