Skip to main content

Lisa Davidson

Pronouns: She/Her

Senior Research Scientist
Lisa studies the cross-cultural measurement of students’ learning and development as well as campus climates.

Lisa’s work involves culturally responsive educational research, assessment, and evaluation.  She executes study designs and methods that center diverse perspectives, with particular attention to perspectives that have been—and continue to be—excluded from much postsecondary educational research.  Lisa’s work involves the cross-cultural measurement of college students’ learning and development as well as ecological factors that influence their experiences and outcomes within higher education. She has extensive experience executing culturally responsive research projects that involve multiple institutions, mixed methods, and diverse audiences including college students, faculty, and staff.  Lisa has extensive experience leading survey and rubric development as well as survey psychometrics

Lisa has served as the Principal Investigator (PI) for Varying Degrees: the State of Higher Education study, developing measures and implementing analyses that are responsive to the dynamic nature of the general public’s perceptions of the U.S. higher education ecosystem. Lisa has served as PI or Co-PI on several campus climate studies that have focused on the intercultural experiences of college students, faculty, and staff, including the multi-institution campus climate assessment with Hillel International. Lisa is currently serving as the PI for a National Science Foundation (NSF) ADVANCE-funded study to develop metrics to assess the impacts of sexual harassment interventions in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), and Co-PI and lead methodologist for an NSF study on career trajectories of STEM doctoral students, for which she is developing, validating, and analyzing a variety of new culturally responsive measures to investigate career decision making within STEM graduate and professional contexts.

Prior to joining NORC, Lisa spent 20 years working in institutional research, student learning assessment, career development, and academic affairs.  She has taught undergraduate- and graduate-level courses on educational evaluation and college student development.



Loyola University Chicago


DePaul University


Cleveland State University

Project Contributions

Career Trajectories of STEM Doctoral Students

Studying STEM PhD students’ career trajectories using culturally responsive measures and methods


National Science Foundation

Hillel International Campus Climate Review

Understanding the campus experiences of Jewish college students


Hillel International

National Study of Faculty Attitudes Toward Academic Freedom

A new study of academic freedom inspired by Paul Lazarsfeld’s 1958 research


American Association of Colleges and Universities and American Association of University Professors

Survey on Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy Curricula in Higher Education

Gaining insight into psychedelic-assisted therapy curricula and implementation in U.S. higher education



Varying Degrees: The State of Higher Education

Tracking changing opinions and trends about college education


New America

Wake Forest University Student Survey

Identifying key issues and concerns on the Wake Forest campus


Wake Forest University