Ellen Middaugh, PhD

Ellen Middaugh

Associate Professor, Child & Adolescent Development

Ellen Middaugh's research is guided by the question, “How do youth become effective advocates for themselves and their communities in the digital age?” She is interested in how the internet and participatory media enable and constrain civic participation. Dr. Middaugh conducts research on how youth use social media to express public voice and build community, youth practices as they encounter misinformation and hostility online, and educational interventions designed to help support informed, ethical and empowered civic engagement. Her research focuses on youth broadly but with special interest in the experiences of those who may be excluded or misrepresented by powerful civic institutions.


  • Ph.D., Human Development and Education, UC Berkeley
  • B.A., Psychology, George Washington University

Recent Publications

  • Golloher, A. N., & Middaugh, E. (2020, July). Diversity Dialogues: Online discussions impact on teacher candidates’ adoption of characteristics of inclusive teachers. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education.
  • Middaugh, E. & Asato, J. (2020). Building civic literacy through geospatial play. In A. Garcia, S. Witte & J. Dahl (Eds) Playing in the Classroom: Games, Literacies, and Youth Culture in the 21st Century. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.
  • Middaugh, E. (2019). Teens, social media and fake news. Chapter 3. In W. Journell (Ed). Fake news: What it is, why it is problematic, and what educators can do about it. New York: Teachers College Press. Approved by Review Board June, 2018. Publication date March 22, 2019.
  • Middaugh, E. (2019). More than just facts: Promoting civic media literacy in the era of outrage. Peabody Journal of Education. Published online before print. Doi: 10.1080/0161956X.2019.1553582.

  • Sorkhabi, N. & Middaugh, E. (2019). Domain-specific parenting practices and adolescent self-esteem, problem behaviors, and social and academic competence. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 28, 505-18. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10826-018-1270-6

Recent Presentations

  • Golloher, A. & Middaugh, E. (2020). AERA Diversity Dialogues: Online Discussions to Encourage the Adoption of Characteristics of Inclusive Teacher. Paper accepted for presentation at the Annual Meeting of the American Education Research Association, San Francisco, CA. (Conference
  • Middaugh, E., Sorkhabi, N. & Harrison, T. (2020). Social Media and Adolescent Expectations of Privacy: Implications for Parenting in the Digital Age. Accepted for Poster Presentation at Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research on Adolescence, March, 2020, San Diego. (Conference Cancelled)
  • Middaugh, E. (2019). Did you know?! Cultivating online public voice in youth. Research into Practice Invited Lecture. National Council for the Social Studies, Austin, TX.
  • Middaugh, E. (2019, April) Coming of Age in the Era of Outrage: Digital Media and Youth Civic Development. University Scholars Series.
  • Middaugh, E. (2019, April). Youth Civic Development in an Era of Outrage: Implications for Civic Education. Annual Meeting of the American Education Research Association. Toronto, CA.
  • Middaugh, E. (2019, February). Transformative engagement: Youth remaking their worlds. Report commissioned for and presented at the UNESCO Global Citizenship Education Division’s February, 2019 Experts’ Meeting on Teaching and Learning for Responsible Transformative Engagement in Seoul, Korea.

Noteworthy Grants and Awards

  • 2020 SJSU Early Career Investigator Award

Online Resources

Areas of Research Interest

  • Adolescent
  • Civic education
  • Civic engagement, youth
  • Community
  • Critical consciousness
  • Digital media
  • Participatory media
  • Social media

Recommended Reading

Personality Playlist

Listen to Ellen's playlist below and access all of the personality playlists on our Lurie College of Education Spotify account