Professor, Department Head
Robert Kelchen (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) is professor and head of the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies. Prior to joining ELPS in 2021, he was associate professor and department chair at Seton Hall University. His research areas include higher education finance, accountability policies and practices, and student financial aid. Dr. Kelchen has recent publications in Educational Researcher, Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, The Journal of Higher Education, and Economics of Education Review. His research has received more than $2 million in funding from Arnold Ventures, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Joyce Foundation, the Lumina Foundation, and the William T. Grant Foundation.
Dr. Kelchen is a nationally recognized scholar who is regularly ranked by Education Week as being one of the 25 most influential education professors in America and is regularly quoted in national media outlets. He is associate editor of Research in Higher Education, data editor for Washington Monthly magazine’s annual college guide and rankings, and received the Excellence in Public Policy in Higher Education award from the Association for the Study of Higher Education’s Council on Public Policy in Higher Education in 2023. He regularly teaches higher education finance and budgeting (HEAM 650) within the higher education administration Ph.D. program, has taught honors leadership studies (ELPS 207), and developed a new undergraduate education policy class (ELPS 251).