» Dissertations by CES Ph.D. Students

The Ph.D. program culminates in the completion and defense of a research based dissertation that makes a contribution to the field of study and ensures that the student becomes a steward of the discipline and a public intellectual.

+ - 2016 Graduates

Dr. Sarah Charlotte Achieng-Evensen. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Suzanne SooHoo
Title: Young, Urban, Professional, and Kenyan?: Conversations Surrounding Tribal Identity and Nationhood

Dr. Mindi Benditson. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Penny Bryan
Title: Inside/Outside/In-between: Understanding how Ashkenazi Female Teachers Navigate their Multiple Identities in Public Education.

Dr. Nicole Bennett. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Penny Bryan
Title: The Repatriation Experiences of American Third Culture Kids

Dr. Leticia Cornejo. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: School Psychologists’ Training and Knowledge of Tourette Syndrome

Dr. Janae Dimick. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Peter McLaren
Title: A Hundred Echoes: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Farm Animals in Children’s Picture Books

Dr. Meredith Dorner. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Brian Alters
Title: Academic Factors that Predict Community College Students’ Acceptance of Evolution

Dr. Christine Ellis. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: Selective Mutism: A Survey of School Psychologists' Experience, Knowledge, and Perception

Dr. Sabina Giakoumis. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: Associations among a Science Education Professional Development Training Program and Science Course Enrollment of 11th Grade English Language Learners and Females

Dr. Audri Gomez. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: The Shift from Research to Action: Transforming the Nature of Professional Development to Support Inclusive Education

Dr. Carol Hines. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: A Place to Flourish: The Experiences of Families Whose Children have Moderate to Severe Disabilities as They Interact with Their Communities of Faith

Dr. Christopher Hutchison. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Penny Bryan
Title: Town and Gown Pedagogy and Civic Engagement: An Action Research Exploration of Democratizing the Undergraduate Classroom with a Focus upon University-Community Tension and Civic Learning

Dr. Joanne Kim. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dianne Ferguson
Title: Towards a New Understanding: Complex Familial Constructs of Autism

Dr. Maryann Krikorian. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: Contemplative Practices in Higher Education: The Development of a Rating Scale

Dr. Christopher Lewis. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Suzanne SooHoo
Title: The Spaces between Dystopia and Utopia: Youth Perspectives on Identity, Education, and Resistance

Dr. Maria Martinez. Dissertation Chairs: Dr. Penny Bryan & Dr. Whitney McIntyre Miller
Title: Bridgers in the Third Space: An In-Country Investigation of the Leadership Practices of US-Educated Chinese Nationals

Dr. Aja McKee. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: The Voices of Those We Serve: Examining the Educational Experiences of Individuals with Autism Who Are Non-Speaking  

Dr. Tammy Pao. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: Nontraditional Student Risk Factors and Gender as Predictors of Enrollment in College Distance Education

Dr. Holly Pearson. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Philip Ferguson
Title: Spatiality of Racial and Ethnic Minorities with Disabilities in Higher Education

Dr. Edwardo Sevilla. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Penny Bryan
Title: In Search of Common Ground between Emergent Generational Expectations and Established Organizational Realities: Defining a New Employment Model

Dr. Kelly Skon. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: Unique Intimacy: A Phenomenological Study of Adult Twin Attachment when One Twin has a Chronic Illness/Disability

Dr. Jillian Wood. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Penny Bryan
Title: The Glass Ceiling is Not Broken: Gender Equity Issues among Faculty in Higher Education

Dr. Ahmed Younis. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Suzanne SooHoo
Title: American Muslim Conscientização: A Philosophy for Liberation

+ - 2015 Graduates

Dr. Uma Alahari. Dissertation Chairs: Dr. Dawn Hunter & Dr. Michael Hass
Title: Being in the Moment, Being in the Present: Early Childhood Teachers' Experiences with Mindfulness Practice

Dr. Zoe Alvarez. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Michael Hass
Title: Gender Similarities as Perceived by Students, Parents, and Teachers on the Behavior Assessment System for Children, Second Edition

Dr. Kristin DeMicco. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Keith Howard
Title: Cliques, Clothes, and Consciousness Raising: What Can Online Fanfiction Teach Us About Adolescent Female Identity Formation?

Dr. Teresa Hess. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: Family Quality of Life: Parents' Experiences of Team Sport Participation for their Child with a Disability

Dr. Nicol Howard. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: Being in the Moment, Being in the Present: Early Childhood Teachers' Experiences with Mindfulness Practice

Dr. Jon Levin. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: The Effectiveness of Videoconferencing for Teaching Life Science to Chinese Elementary Students

Dr. Jennifer Radie. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: The Effects of Military Deployment on the Children of Military Families

Dr. Marisol Rexach. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Lilia Monzo
Title: Sudanese Children of Immigrants: Black Angels Navigating Cultural Worlds 

Dr. Monica Shukla. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Keith Howard
Title: Social Media Use within Higher Education: Communication Outreach and Branding

Dr. Norma Valenzuela. Dissertation Chairs: Dr. Anaida Colon-Muniz & Dr. Lilia Monzo
Title: Platicame de tu Vida: Narratives of Latina Young Adults who Attended Dual Language Immersion Programs as Children

+ - 2014 Graduates

Dr. Stephanie Domzalski. Dissertation Chair: Dr. John Brady
Title: The Evolution of Expertise: Case Studies in School Psychology

Dr. Jaime Flowers. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: Development of a Rating Scale for the Measurement of Other-Esteem: The Other-Esteem Rating Scale (OthERS)

Dr. Jacqueline Gomez. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dianne Ferguson
Title: Latino Families and the Disability Maze: Using Parent Organizations to Navigate Culture, Class, and Special Education

Dr. Tricia Kasamatsu. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Michelle Cleary
Title: Understanding Athletic Trainers’ Concussion Management and Return to Learn Recommendations in Secondary Schools: A Mixed Methods Study

Dr. Courtney Matz. Dissertation Chairs: Dr. Kelly Kennedy & Dr. Michael Hass
Title: Advocates and IEPs: Parental Perspectives and Solutions Schools Can Offer

Dr. Cheri Melancon-Whitehead. Dissetation Chair: Dr. Phil Ferguson
Title: Looking Back and Speaking Out: Young Latino Men Reflect on Their High School Experiences

Dr. Andrew Ndiforngwa. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Phil Ferguson
Title: An Interpretivist Study of Inclusive Education in Ghana

Dr. Denise Reid. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dianne Ferguson
Title: Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Exploring the Lived Experiences of College Students who Do Not Request Accommodations

Dr. Christine Toleson. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: Beyond Resilience: A Retrospective Study of the Personal Strengths and School-Based Protective Factors that Promote Positive Outcomes for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Questioning/Queer Youth

+ - 2013 Graduates

Dr. Kellie Albrecht. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Kimberly White-Smith
Title: Beyond Bonded Voices: A Qualitative Study with Adult Monozygotic (Identical) Twins

Dr. Veronica Bloomfield. Dissertation Chairs: Dr. Penny Bryan & Dr. Suzanne SooHoo   
Title: Personal and familial performances of whiteness

Dr. Francis Dizion. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Kelly Kennedy   
Title: School Psychologists’ Reported Perspectives on the Larry P. Ban and Related Practices

Dr. Marni Fisher. Dissertation Chairs: Dr. Penny Bryan & Dr. Suzanne SooHoo
Title: Here There Be Dragons: The Development of Prism Theory and Prismatic Inquiry

Dr. Andrew Granite. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Phil Ferguson
Title: Run whatcha brung: A phenomenological study of the gender construction of men with intellectual disabilities

Dr. Amy Hanreddy. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dianne Ferguson  
Title: Forced Choices and Limited Options: Parent Perspectives on High School for their Children with Significant Disabilities

Dr. Sarai Koo. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: College Access Program Evaluation on College Attendance Rate, Intrinsic Motivation, and Community Connectedness of At-Risk and Minority Youth

Dr. Ryan McGill. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: Beyond g: Assessing the Incremental Validity of Cattell-Horn-Carroll (CHC) Broad Ability Factors on the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Cognitive Abilities

Dr. Heather Mills. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Suzanne SooHoo 
Title: A Case Study of Teachers Navigating Between NCLB and the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme in an Urban, Low-Income Public School

Dr. Victoria Morris. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Kimberly White-Smith
Title: Wingspan Beyond the Reservation: Native American Women Cultural Mediation Outside the Demarcation of Sovereignty

Dr. Cammie Nguyen.  Dissertation Chair: Dr. Kelly Kennedy
Title: Trends in Special Education Due Process Hearings Involving Students with Autism in the State of California

Dr. Debora Nodelman. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Suzanne SooHoo
Title: Making Space for Possibility:  Transformative Practice in an Elementary Visual Arts Studio

Dr. Kelly Rogers. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Lilia Monzo
Title: A Cross Generational, Narrative Study of Three Generations of Women: Money Management and the Ties to a Women-Owned Family Business

Dr. Michele Ramstetter. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse
Title: On-campus prevention: How well school-based offerings predict the dropout rate at continuation high schools

Dr. Christopher Strople. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Penny Bryan & Dr. Suzanne SooHoo
Title: Grey: An Emergence of Postmodern Autoethnography

+ - 2012 Graduates

Dr. Shawna Draxton. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dianne Ferguson.
Title: The Impact of Student Voice on the Teacher's Approach to Pedagogy.

Dr. Darla Hagge. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Judy Montgomery
Title:  Partners of persons with aphasia: Communication Training Series and quality of life.

Dr. Joanne Murphy. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: Developing Self-Determination of High School Students with Disabilities to Foster College and Career Goal Setting.

Dr. Trisha Nishimura. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: Effects of Inclusive Professional Development on Teacher Attitudes towards Students with Disabilities.

Dr. Carlos Perez. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Lilia Monzo
Title: The Experiences of Immigrant Families from Mexico who speak Indigenous Languages: A Sociocultural and Postcolonial Perspective of Language, Culture, and Identity.

Dr. Kirstee Radley. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Philip Ferguson
Title: The Social Construction of Personhood: Family Perspectives on the Essence of People Identified as Significantly Disabled.

Dr. Jennifer Shubin. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter.
Title: High School Student Perceptions of their Labels and their Special Education Services.

Dr. Lawrence Taniform. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Philip Ferguson
Title: The Social Construction of Albinism in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Transformative Mixed Methods Study of Ghana and Tanzania.

+ - 2011 Graduates

Dr. Stephanie Brown. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: Transition to Preschool: Hearing the Voices of Families.

Dr. John Erratt. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Philip Ferguson
Title: Social Regularities Influencing International Policy on Special Education: A Post-Structuralist Policy Analysis.

Dr. Melanie Kamae. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Dawn Hunter
Title: A Teacher's Perspective on Native Hawaiian Children: A Case Study of a Rural School.

Dr. Christy Neria. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Philip Ferguson
Title: Emerging Adults with Cochlear Implants: Their Experiences and Lifeworlds.

Dr. Alaine Ocampo. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Joel Colbert
Title: The Relationship of Collaboration and Job Satisfaction between Speech-Language Pathologists and School Psychologists.

Dr. Lila Samia. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Michael Hass
Title: Screening for Internalizing Problems in Middle School Students Utilizing a Positive Indicator of Mental Health.

Dr. Angela Viencek. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Philip Ferguson
Title: Autismo Families' Perspectives and Their Children with Autism

Dr. Melody Yi. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Randy Busse.
Title: Evaluation of Therapeutic Progress in At-Risk Youth in a Behavioral Day-Treatment School Program.

+ - 2010 Graduates

Dr. Stefani Boutelier. Dissertation Chairs: Dr. Penny Bryan and Dr. Anna Wilson
Title: Translated Identity: Multilingual Reality of Tween Identity Formation.

Dr. Jeanne Anne Carriere. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Michael Hass
Title: Teachers Perceived Effectiveness of Psychoeducational Report Writing Models.

Dr. Dina Eletreby. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Suzanne SooHoo
Title: Conversion Experiences of Three White American Muslim Males: Moving Towards Justice by the Decentering Power of Faith.
Read an abstract of Dr. Eletreby's dissertation.

Dr. Ndindi Kitonga. Dissertation Chairs: Dr. Suzanne SooHoo and Dr. Anna Wilson
Title: Postcolonial Construction of Self: Two Immigrant Secondary Science Teachers from Nigeria and Kenya Explore the Role of Cultural and Indigenous Beliefs in their Teaching.
Read an abstract of Dr. Kitonga's dissertation.

Dr. Colette Marie O’Bannion. Dissertation Chair: Dr. Anna Wilson
Title: Naughty or Not?: Exploring Controversial Content and Core Universal Themes in Contemporary Young Adult Literature.
Read an abstract of Dr. O'Bannion's dissertation.

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