Krista M. Soria, Ph.D.

Job title: 
Institutional Research, Assessment, and Policy Analysis and Office for Student Affairs, University of Idaho

Dr. Krista M. Soria (she/her) is an Assistant Professor of Leadership and Counseling at the University of Idaho. She is a critical quantitative researcher seeking to investigate the most equitable and inclusive programmatic practices and institutional conditions to prepare students to engage in the complexities of social change. She examines how higher education institutions can create a more supportive campus climate for students from diverse backgrounds, whether programs are equitably accessible and beneficial to all students, and how we can create structural conditions to support students’ development and success. She has also investigated the ways in which the COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected students from underrepresented and marginalized backgrounds. Dr. Soria has published over 70 peer-reviewed journal articles, edited five books, authored a volume on social class in higher education, and recently co-edited a New Directions for Student Leadership volume on evidence-based practices in leadership education. She has been a Principal Investigator on several grants, including a federal FIPSE grant to investigate the impact of community service on underrepresented students’ outcomes; an AccessLEX and Association for Institutional Research (AIR) grant to explore the effects of financial support on graduate and professional students’ time to degree, mental health, and career interests; and an ACUHO-I/NACURH grant to investigate the impact of leadership in residence halls for socioeconomically disadvantaged students.


Research interests: 

I focus on conducting assessments of academic and student affairs programs, with a critical lens of diversity, equity, and inclusion. I examine how campuses can create a more supportive campus climate for students from diverse backgrounds, whether programs are equitably accessible to all students, and whether underrepresented and marginalized students in higher education feel valued and included on their campuses. I also investigate learning and development outcomes associated with students’ engagement in a variety of curricular and co-curricular programs, including leadership development, perspective-taking, social generativity, civic and community engagement, and engagement in social change and social justice. I focus on institutional outcomes, such as retention and graduation rates, and the conditions that help students to thrive.