Nicholas Michelli’s academic interests include urban education, teacher education, school-university partnerships, aesthetic education, public policy for education, education for democracy and social justice, and teaching for critical thinking. He is a national leader in the movement to enhance teacher quality and frequently chairs national accreditation teams assessing colleges of education. He has taught in China and worked with Zayed University in the United Arab Emirates, one of the first universities for women in a Muslim theocracy.
Before his appointment to the Graduate Center as Presidential Professor, he was University Dean of Teacher Education at the City University of New York, and for twenty years prior he was Dean of the College of Education and Human Services at Montclair State University. He initiated the Pathways Project, a large-scale systematic assessment of teacher education and new teachers entering the NYC teaching force, and for eight years he chaired the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education’s (AACTE) Committee on Governmental Relations. He is coeditor of Teacher Education Policy in the United States: Issues and Tensions in an Era of Evolving Expectations (2011), coauthor and editor of Teacher Education for Democracy and Social Justice (2005, Chinese edition 2010), and coauthor of Centers of Pedagogy: New Structures for Educational Renewal (1999). Michelli received his doctorate from Teachers College of Columbia University in 1972.