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Julie Renee Posselt

Assistant Professor of Higher Education, University of Southern California

Julie R. Posselt is assistant professor of higher education at the University of Southern California and a National Academy of Education/ Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellow. Using organizational and sociological theory, her research examines gatekeeping, diversity, and wellbeing in sectors of higher education with longstanding inequalities. She has particular interests in research methods and the study of graduate education and the professoriate.
Posselt is author of the book Inside Graduate Admissions: Merit, Diversity, and Faculty Gatekeeping (2015, Harvard University Press), which is based on an award-winning comparative ethnographic study of faculty judgment in 10 highly ranked doctoral programs in three universities.
Her work has been funded by the Spencer Foundation, the U.S. Department of Education, and the Center for Public Policy in Diverse Societies. In 2017, Posselt received the Early Career award from the Association for the Study of Higher Education, and she is currently a member of the Journal of Higher Education’s editorial review board. She received her PhD from the University of Michigan.


  • 2016–present
    Assistant professor, University of Southern California
  • 2013–2016
    Assistant professor, University of Michigan


Postdoctoral Fellow, National Academy of Education/ Spencer Foundation