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Dr. Michelle D. Deardorff
Professor and Department Head
Political Science, Public Administration, & Nonprofit Management

Since earning her Ph.D. from Miami University in 1993, Dr. Deardorff’s teaching and research have focused on the constitutional and statutory protections surrounding gender, race, and religion. She is currently completing a book, entitled Pregnancy and the American Worker, which examines the lower federal courts’ interpretation of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 in relationship to pregnancy protections in employment, which is under contract with Palgrave Macmillian.

Most recently, she served as Professor and Chair of Political Science at Jackson State University, a historic black university in Mississippi. Prior to her relocation to Jackson State in 2003, Deardorff was the Griswold Distinguished Professor of Political Science, former chair of the Department of Political Science, and Acting Dean of Arts and Sciences at Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois. Michelle is a founding member of the Fannie Lou Hamer National Institute on Citizenship and Democracy, a coalition of academics who promote civic engagement and popular sovereignty through the study of the struggle for civil rights in the United States.

In 2009, the American Political Science Association (APSA) published Assessment in Political Science, a primer on programmatic and classroom assessment within the discipline, co-edited by Deardorff, Kerstin Hamann, and John Ishiyama. Oxford University Press published in 2011 the two-volume set, Constitutional Law in Contemporary America, written by David Schultz, John R. Vile, and Deardorff. Most recently, she joined Brigid Harrison and Jean Harris as an author of the McGraw-Hill text American Democracy,now, currently in its third edition. She serves as the chair of the APSA standing Committee on Teaching and Learning for the 2011-2014 term.