Rhodesia McMillian

Headshot of Rhodesia McMillian

Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Studies

Program Area: Educational Policy



Rhodesia McMillian is an assistant professor of educational policy in educational studies and a nationally certified school psychologist. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Missouri-Columbia after consecutive careers of being an Autism teacher and a school psychologist. McMillian joined The Ohio State university in autumn 2019.


  • Ph.D., K-12 Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis, University of Missouri-Columbia 2018
  • Ed.S., School Psychology, Georgia Southern University, 2013
  • M.Ed., School Psychology, Georgia Southern University, 2010
  • B.S., Speech-Language Pathology, Armstrong Atlantic State University, 2007

Research Interests

Research Summary

Utilizing critical methodologies and theories, she is a interdisciplinary scholar whose research bridges K-12 education reform law, education policy, elementary and secondary educational governance, special education law, and sociology. Dr. McMillian’s primary scholarship investigates how federal, state and local education policies impact the educational experiences of students of color and students with disabilities, as well as the ways in which educational disparities persist in k-12 public education.

Selected Publications

  • McMillian, R. (2020).  So you want to make a special education referral: How to foster equity and understanding special education policy.  In J.S. Brooks & A. Heffernan (Eds.), The school leadership survival guide: What to do when things go wrong, how to learn from mistakes, and why you should prepare for the worst. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

Selected Presentations

  • McMillian, R. (2018). Operationalizing violence: Examining discourse in a Washington, D. C. school closure court case.  Paper to be presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Research Association (AERA).  New York, New York, April 2018.
  • McMillian, R., Pinto, R.  (2017). Educating a nation: An intersectional examination of education policy in Ghana.  Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the University Council of Education Administration (UCEA).  Denver, CO, November 2017.
  • McMillian, R. (March, 2017).  TEDx Adopting dignity: Equity in public education [Video file].  Retrieved from https://youtu.be/6KcjLwolXmE