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About Kirsten R. Brown, Ph.D.

Dr. Kirsten R. Brown’s research agenda follows three lines of inquiry to address issues of access, diversity, and outcomes in higher education.  Dr. Brown is interested in neurodiversity and practices that support the retention and success of students with disabilities in postsecondary education.  Her co-authored book, Disability in Higher Education: A Social Justice Approach is available on Amazonand through Josey-Bass.  Dr. Brown was awarded the Disability Leadership Award, by ACPA’s Standing Committee on Disability (2015) in recognition of her research contributions.  Current funded research projects involve investigating the experiences of students with disabilities in campus housing (ACUHO-I, 2016) and the use of BCIs in augmented communication (Disability Communication Fund, 2016).  Her second line of inquiry examines gendered organizational structures with an emphasis on job classification, technology, and work environments.  Third, Dr. Brown has recently started to study cultural competence and assessment practices within graduate medical education.

Dr. Brown’s teaching background is in Higher Education Administration, Sociology, and Disability Studies.  Dr. Brown is a Research Faculty Member in the Educational Leadership Doctoral Program at Edgewood College.  Prior to this position, she served as adjunct faculty at Madison College, Marquette University, Terra State Community College, and UW-Madison.  Dr. Brown is active in several professional organizations and has presented nationally at ASHE, NAFSA, and ACPA.  She is also engaged with international education; in May of 2015 Dr. Brown gave an invited lecture at Xi’an International Studies University in Xi’an, China.

Dr. Brown is an accomplished administrator with professional experience at a small arts-focused college, a mid-size state university, and a large flagship institution.  Her administrative work spans the areas of residence life, McNair Scholars, disability services, leadership programs, graduate admissions, academic advising, and pre-college programs.  Most recently Dr. Brown served as a Curriculum Coordinator for International Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Dr. Brown earned her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration and Student Affairs from Bowling Green State University.  While at Bowling Green State University, Dr. Brown received the Katzner Award for Graduate Research and successfully nominated Dr. Broido for the President’s Award in Collaborative Research.  Dr. Brown received her master’s degree in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and her undergraduate degree in Psychology and Sociology from Carroll University.


May 2017 - Present Research Faculty, Edgewood College ‐ Educational Leadership Doctoral Program
August 2013 - Present Adjunct Faculty Member, Sociology, Madison Area Technical College
July 2012 - January 2018 Student Affairs, International Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Curriculum Vitae

Research Interests

Higher education administration, Disability, Autism, Campus climate for diversity, College student development, and Gender

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Honors and Awards

  • ACPA Standing Committee on Disability Leadership Award, 2015
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison Academic Staff Professional Development Grant, 2015 & 2013
  • Successful nomination of Dr. Broido for the President’s Award for Collaborative Research at Bowling Green State University, 2012
  • Katzner Award for Graduate Research, 2010


  • Student Development in Higher Education
  • Foundations of Research Methods
  • Research Design and Methodology
  • Counseling Psychology: FYS
  • Educational Outcomes of American Colleges & Universities
  • Social Problems in the US
  • Social & Cultural Diversity
  • Environment & Life Sciences: FYS
  • Residential Community Service
  • Introduction to Sociology


August 2008 - May 2012 PhD, Bowling Green State University - Main Campus ‐ HESA
August 2005 - May 2008 MA, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee ‐ Sociology
August 1999 - May 2003 BS, Carroll College

Disability: Students, Campus Enviroments, and Research Methods (4)

Autism (6)

Gender and Women in Higher Education (1)