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Rodney P. Hughes, Ph.D.


Dr. Rodney Hughes is an assistant professor of higher education administration in the College of Education and Human Services at West Virginia University and the director of the Center for the Future of Land-Grant Education. His research interests include college access and affordability, college and university governance, and the economics of higher education. He has published research in Review of Higher Education, Higher Education: Handbook of Theory and Research, Educational Policy, Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, and Journal of Education Finance, and he has delivered refereed presentations at the annual meetings of the Association for the Study of Higher Education, American Educational Research Association, Association for Institutional Research, Association for Education Finance and Policy, and the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management.

He earned a B.S. and M.A. in economics and a Ph.D. in higher education administration from the Pennsylvania State University, and he served as student member of the Board of Trustees at Penn State from 2008 – 2011 and chair of the board’s Committee on Campus Environment from 2010 – 2011. Prior to joining the faculty at WVU, he was a research manager in the Center for Education Policy Research at Harvard University from 2013 – 2016.

Academic Degrees:

Ph.D. in Higher Education
Penn State University, 2013

M.A. in Economics
Penn State University, 2009

B.S. in Economics
Penn State University, 2007

Selected Publications

Hughes, R., Kimball, E., & Koricich, A. (2019). The dual commodification of college-going: Individual and institutional influences on access and choice. Higher Education: Handbook of Theory and Research, 34, 415-477.

Hughes, R., Dahlin, L., & Tucci, T. (2018). An investigation of a multiple-measures teaching evaluation system and its relationship with students’ college-going outcomes. Educational Policy. OnlineFirst.

Cheslock, J., Hughes, R., Frick-Cardelle, R., & Heller, D. (2018) Filling the gap: The use of intentional and incidental need-meeting financial aid in higher education. Review of Higher Education 41(4) 577-605.

Koricich, A., Chen, X., & Hughes, R. (2018) Understanding the effects of rurality and socioeconomic status on college attendance and institutional choice in the United States. Review of Higher Education 41(2) 281-305.

Lozano, J., & Hughes, R. (2017) Modes of representation among students on higher education governing boards. Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management 39(6), 607-624.

Cheslock, J., Hughes, R., & Umbricht, M. (2014). The opportunities, challenges, and strategies associated with the use of operations-oriented (big) data to support decision making within universities. In J. Lane (Ed.), Building a smarter university: Big data, innovation, and analytics (pp. 211-237). Albany, NY: SUNY Press.

Cheslock, J., & Hughes, R. (2011). Differences across states in higher education finance policy.Journal of Education Finance 36 (4), 369-393.

Hughes, R. (2011). Changes over time in the determinants of price sensitivity in higher education: A distinction between access and choice. Journal of Educational Policy, Planning, and Administration,1(1), 83-105. Retrieved from

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