Main Menu Summer 2013

Cris Mayo

Educational Background

  • Ph.D., Education, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1998
  • M.A., Education, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1994
  • B.A., History & Women's Studies, State University of New York, 1989

Key Professional Appointments

  • Director of Online Learning, Education Policy, Organization and Leadership, College of Education, 2013-present
  • Associate Professor, EPS and GWS, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2005-2012
  • Interim Director, Gender and Women's Studies Program, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2006-2009
  • Assistant Professor, Educational Policy Studies/ Women's and Gender Studies, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2003-2005
  • Assistant Professor, School of Education, University of Delaware, 2001-2003
  • Assistant Professor, Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, 1998-2001

Activities & Honors

  • Volunteer Faculty Director, Odyssey Project, COE - EPS, 2010-present
  • President, American Educational Studies Association, 2013-2014
  • Campus Online Teaching Award, University of Illinois, 2013-2013
  • vice president, elected 2011, American Educational Studies Association, 2011-2012
  • Distinguished College Scholar, College of Education, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2005-2006

Research Statement

My research interests include philosophy of education, gender and sexuality studies, environmental education, and multicultural theory. My first book, Disputing the Subject of Sex (Rowman and Littlefield, 2004, reprinted in paperback, 2007) details clashes over AIDS education and gay inclusive multicultural education in New York State in the 1980s and 1990s. My second book LGBTQ Youth and Education: Policies and Practices (Teachers College Press, 2013) examines laws, school policies, curricular approaches and student organizing related to LGBTQ issues. I include discussions of gay/straight alliances in public schools and their work in the formation of associational identities, examining how such groups organize around and address differences of race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, and sexuality. My next research project examines environmental education programs and their implications for thinking about ethics as well as local and global identities. I am also working on a project on online pedagogies that encourage learning relationships and examinations of differences.


  • Principal Investigator, Queering school communities: Gay straight alliances and the politics of association, Campus Research Board, 2005-2006


  • Mayo, Cris (2013). LGBTQ Youth and Education: Policies and Practices. Teachers College Press: New York.
  • Mayo, Cris (2013). “Unsettled Relations: Schools, Gay Marriage, and Educating for Sexuality,. Educational Theory, 63(5), 543-558.
  • Mayo, Cris (2010). Queer Lessons: Sexual and gender minorities and multiculturalism. Multicultural education: Issues and perspectives. Wiley: New York.
  • Mayo, Cris (2008). Obscene associations: Gay-straight alliances, the equal access act, and abstinence-only policy. Sexuality Research and Social Policy, 5(2), 44-55.
  • Mayo, Cris (2007). Queering foundations: Queer and LGBT educational research. Review of Research in Education, 31, 76-94.
  • Mayo, Cris (2006). Pushing the limits of liberalism: Queerness, children, and the future. Educational Theory, 56, 469-487.
  • Mayo, Cris (2004). The tolerance that dare not speak its name. Disturbing speech, troubling silence. Peter Lang: New York.
  • Mayo, Cris (2004). Queering school communities: Ethical curiosity and gay straight alliances. Journal of Gay and Lesbian Issues in Education, 1(3), 23-36.
  • Mayo, Cris (2004). Disputing the subject of sex: Sexuality and public school controversy. Rowman and Littlefield: Boulder, CO.
  • Mayo, Cris (2003). "Sly Decency." Invited response to Cheshire Calhoun, Philosophy of Education 2002, edited by Barbara Houston, (Urbana,. Philosophy of Education Society, 2003), 36-39.
  • Mayo, Cris (2002). Framing AIDS: Policy, politics, and the uncertainty of facts: A Review. Gay and Lesbian Quarterly.
  • Mayo, Cris (2002). The bind that ties: Civility and social difference. Educational Theory, 52, 169-186.
  • Mayo, Cris (2000). The uses of Foucault. Educational Theory, 50, 103-116.
  • Mayo, Cris (2000). Curious alliance: Post-identity politics, sexuality, and student resistance to curricula. Philosophical Studies in Education, 32, 55-62.

In The News

UI campus honors professors Stacy Dymond and Cris Mayo with teaching excellence awards

Apr. 26, 2013

Stacy Dymond, associate professor of Special Education, and Cris Mayo, professor of Educational Policy, Organization, and Leadership, have both received 2013 campus teaching awards. They were recognized at the Celebration of Teaching Excellence with other teaching award winners from across campus on April 23. Read more...

Bureau of Educational Research holds seminar: 'Long but Fulfilling Journey to Distinguished Teaching and Advising'

Dec. 19, 2012

Students, faculty, and staff joined together to hear advice and reflections of College of Education teaching award recipients at the Bureau of Educational Research's fall seminar, held on December 6. After sharing a meal, attendees enjoyed hearing down-to-earth and practical teaching and advising insight from three panel members, all of whom won a 2011-12 outstanding graduate teaching award. Read more...

College announces promotions of faculty, staff

Oct. 30, 2012

At the College's fall faculty meeting held earlier this month, unit leaders announced changes of status and key accomplishments within their respective units. In addition, four faculty members from the College of Education have received promotions effective this academic year. Read more...