Eboni M. Zamani-Gallaher is Professor of Higher Education/Community College Leadership in the Department of Education Policy, Organization, and Leadership at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is also Director of the Office for Community College Research and Leadership (OCCRL) and Associate Head of the EPOL Department. She holds a PhD in Higher Education Administration with a specialization in Community College Leadership and Educational Evaluation from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her teaching, research, and consulting activities largely include psychosocial adjustment and transition of marginalized collegians, transfer, access policies, student development and services at community colleges.

Dr. Zamani-Gallaher received the 2018 Senior Scholar Award from the Association of College Personnel Administrators (ACPA) - College Educators International and 2017 Senior Scholar awardee of the Council for the Study of Community Colleges (CSCC). She is also an ACPA Diamond Honoree (2017) and the Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE) Council on Ethnic Participation Mildred B. Garcia Senior Exemplary Scholarship Awardee. Dr. Zamani-Gallaher served as president of the Council for the Study of Community Colleges (CSCC), an affiliate of the American Association of Community Colleges (2013-2014) and served as Director for Research and Scholarship for the ACPA (2015-2018).


Ph.D., Educational Organization and Leadership, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2000

M.S., General Experimental Psychology, Western Illinois University, 1997

B.S., Psychology, Western Illinois University, 1993

Awards, Honors, Associations

Senior Scholar Award Council for the Study of Community Colleges (CSCC), 2017 - 2017

Diamond Honoree American College Personnel Association (ACPA), 2017 - 2017

Senior Scholar Award American College Personnel Association (ACPA), 2018 - 2018

Big Ten (CIC) Academic Leadership Fellow Big Ten Academic Alliance, 2016 - 2016

ASHE-CEP Mildred García Senior Exemplary Scholarship Award Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE), 2009 - 2009

Research & Service

For the last two decades, Dr. Eboni M. Zamani-Gallaher has conducted research on marginalized student populations in marginalized institutional contexts. Namely, her work has focused on access, broadening participation, and equitable postsecondary educational trajectories for diverse collegians in two- and four-year institutions. Zamani-Gallaher's scholarship specifically concerns how underrepresented and underserved students navigate open systems of admissions to further education and/or gainful employment. Her studies span policy relevant inquiry on affirmative action in college admissions, postsecondary prison education, and ADA compliance to addressing campus climate for racially minoritized students, students with disabilities, LGBTQIA collegians, and student veterans. Her work has been published in various journals and scholarly texts, including the Community College Journal of Research and Practice, Equity and Excellence in Education, Higher Education Policy, and New Directions for Student Affairs. She has authored/edited seven books including African American Females: Addressing Challenges and Nurturing the Future (Michigan State University), Working with Students in Community Colleges: Contemporary Strategies for Bridging Theory, Research, and Practice (ACPA/Stylus Publishing), and The Obama Administration and Educational Reform (Emerald Group Publishing).


Rockey, M., Fox, H., & Zamani-Gallaher, E. (2018). Exploring the Implementation of Reverse Transfer in Illinois. ( 2 ed vol. 4, pp. 4). Champaign, IL, USA: Office of Community College Research and Leadership.  link >

Zamani-Gallaher, E. (2017). Conflating gender and identity: The need for gender-fluid programming in community colleges. New Directions for Community Colleges 179 89-99.  link >

Zamani-Gallaher, E., Leon, R., & Lang, J. (2016). Abroad as Self-Authorship: Globalization and Reconceptualizing College and Career Readiness. International education at community colleges: Themes, practices and case studies ( pp. 111-125). Palgrave.  link >

Zamani-Gallaher, E., & Fuller, K. (2016). Altering the Pipeline to Prison and Pathways to Postsecondary Education. Update on Research and Leadership Office of Community College Research and Leadership, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  link >

Zamani-Gallaher, E. (2014). The Obama administration and educational reform. Bingley , UK: Emerald Group Publishing.  link >

Stevenson, T., & Zamani-Gallaher, E. (2016). Racialized and gendered experiences of African American female faculty at public community colleges. Transforming understandings of diversity in higher education: Demography, democracy and discourse ( pp. 180-201). Sterling, VA, USA: Stylus.  link >

Zamani-Gallaher, E., & Bragg, D. (2015). Research, policy, and practice in action: The Office of Community College Research and Leadership - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Community College Journal of Research and Practice, 39 (10), 950-953.  link >


Diversity and Divergence: Getting Beyond Enrollment to Bolster Educational Equity (2017). University of North Texas: Denton, TX.

Meet the Editors: ACPA Publications Board (2018). ACPA - College Educators International: Houston, TX.

Me, myself and I-dentity: Reconciling critiques of insider research (2017). Association for the Study of Higher Education: Houston, TX.

Programs, structures, and instructional strategies that facilitate diverse learners transitioning to and through calculus in two-year colleges (2017). American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges: San Diego, CA.

Racial Justice Strategies in Two-Year Colleges: Past, Present, and Future (2018). ACPA - College Educators International: Houston, TX.

Time to Tilt: Collegiate Contradictions, Professorial Paradoxes, and Asserting Black Minds Matter (2017). Indiana Association of Blacks in Higher Education (IABHE) and Indiana Student Affairs Association (ISAA): Terre Haute, IN.


Principal Investigator Embedding Equity within Pathways Catalog of Services, Gates Foundation, 2018 - 2020

Principal Investigator Transfer and the Undergraduate STEM Pipeline at Two-year Hispanic Serving Institutions, National Science Foundation, 2017 - 2019

Principal Investigator Collaborative Research: Transitioning Learners to Calculus in Community Colleges (TLC3): Advancing Strategies for Success in STEM, National Science Foundation, 2016 - 2019

Principal Investigator Continuation of Perkins IV Consultation, Technical Assistance and Applied Research and Evaluation, Illinois Community College Board, 2015 - 2019


ASHE Awards Chair Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE), 2017 - 2019

ACPA Director of Research and Scholarship American College Personnel Association (ACPA), 2016 - 2018

Journal of Critical Thought & Praxis Advisory Board Member Journal of Critical Thought & Praxis, 2012 - 2017

Michigan State University Press, 2016 - present

Editorial Board Member Journal of Higher Education, 2016 - present

ASHE Bobby Wright Dissertation of the Year (DOTY) Committee Chair Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE), 2014 - 2016

Journal of The First-Year Experience & Students in Transition Editorial Board Member Journal of The First-Year Experience & Students in Transition, 2013 - 2016

CSCC Membership Chair Council for the Study of Community Colleges (CSCC), 2015 - present

CSCC Officer, President/Elect/Past Council for the Study of Community Colleges (CSCC), 2012 - 2015

ASHE Committee on Ethnic Participation, Evaluation Chair Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE), 2012 - 2014

Community College Review Editorial Board Member Community College Review, 2013 - present

Community College Review Consulting Editor Community College Review, 2011 - present


Dr. Zamani-Gallaher's approach towards instructional delivery and design are grounded in critical theory, more specifically, the organizing conceptual framework for her teaching is critical pedagogy as she finds it useful in engaging students in active learning, analytic thinking especially in terms of calling to question cultural hegemony. In her courses, she encourages students to challenge interest convergence and marginalization as well as policies and practices that oppress or act to suppress access and equity. She embraces central tenets of adult learning theory that values the experiences of students and the expertise they bring to the program. Hence, she seeks to develop scholars and educational leaders with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions for helping to build learning communities within a global culturally pluralistic society.


Diversity in Higher Education (EOL 574) Explores critical topics and issues related to diversity in higher education, including race/ethnicity, class, and gender. Covers current research that explores diversity in higher education, institutional diversity policies and organizational behaviors, campus constituents, and the role of external groups. The course consists of reading, in-class discussion, group exercise, and completing a research project that is of interest to the student.

Thesis Proposal Seminar (EOL 598)

Zamani-Gallaher, Eboni

Professor, Education Policy, Organization and Leadership



380 Education Building
1310 S. Sixth St.
Champaign, IL 61820

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