C&I Faculty: Robert Dahlgren, Ph.D.

Bob Dahlgren



Robert Dahlgren, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Curriculum & Instruction: Social Studies
Department Chair, Curriculum and Instruction

Office: TH E270 Phone: (716) 673-3701

Email: robert.dahlgren@fredonia.edu


Dr. Robert Dahlgren received his Ph.D. in social studies education from the University of Florida in August 2008. Before beginning his doctoral studies, he taught social studies in K-12 public schools in the Boston, Massachusetts and Jacksonville, Florida areas for seven years. In addition, he taught in the Graduate Education department of Simmons College in Boston for two years and in the College of Education at Miyazaki University in Japan for three years. In his undergraduate and graduate level courses, Dr. Dahlgren’s goal is to provide practical instruction for pre-service teachers in order to inspire them to teach students to be life-long learners in the social studies.

Scholarly/Teaching Interests

Dr. Dahlgren’s research interests are driven by the insights that he gained for his teaching experiences and by the desire to provide a voice for social studies teachers. His primary research interest is in academic freedom and controversy, which he views as among the most pressing concerns for high school social studies teachers. His doctoral dissertation concerned the experiences of public high school teachers in Florida with teaching controversial public issues. He will be developing several models for successful teaching of controversy in the social studies. In addition, he has teaching interests in the social foundations of education, philosophy of education and comparative education. Dr. Dahlgren is currently working on a book for Palgrave Macmillan on the influence of negative film images of public schools and teachers on neo-liberal education policy.

Recent Publications

  • Dahlgren, R.L., Patterson, N.C. & Frey, C. (2014). An injury to all? The haphazard nature of academic freedom in America's public schools. In P.L. Thomas, B. Porfilio, J. Gorlewski & P.R. Carr (Eds.), Social Context Reform: A Pedagogy of Equity and Opportunity (pp. 106-127). New York: Routledge.
  • Patterson, N.C., Horner, S.L., Chandler, P. and Dahlgren, R.L. (2013). Who is at the gate? An examination of secondary social studies teacher support and curricular control in testing and non-testing states. In J. Passe and P.G. Fitchett (Eds.). Research on the status of social studies (pp. 289-300). Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.
  • Dahlgren, R.L. (Summer 2013). The attack on social studies teachers and teaching in 1970s and 1980s Hollywood movies. The Councilor: Illinois Journal of Social Studies 74(2), 1-15.
  • Dahlgren, R.L. (Summer 2013). The twilight of the meritocracy – A review. Theory and Research in Social Education 41(2), pp. 280-284.
  • Dahlgren, R.L. (January 2012). Fatal accommodations: The record of teachers' unions in the McCarthy era. Journal of History Research 2(1), 15-27.

Recent Presentations

  • American Educational Research Association (AERA) Annual Conference, April 4, 2014.
    Paper: “Who is at the Gate: An examination of Secondary Social Studies Teacher

    support and curricular control in testing and non-testing states. (with Nancy Patterson
    and Prentice Chandler)
  • National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) Annual Convention, November 22, 2013.
    Paper: "Champion of Academic Freedom: A Tribute to Jack Nelson"
  • History of Education Society (HES) Annual Meeting, October 2, 2013.
    Panel: "Education in the Sunshine State: Race, Sex, and the Changing Face of
    Education in Florida in the 1970s and 1980s." (with Jess Clawson and Amy
  • American Democracy Project (ADP) Annual Meeting, June 7, 2013
    Paper: “We are Dumbledore’s Army:” The potential of human rights education
    in the social studies curriculum.”
  • Conference on Instructional Technologies (CIT) Annual Conference, May 22, 2013
    Paper: "The potential of educational blogging for teaching controversial issues."


  • Ph.D. – University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 2008
  • M.A.T. – Simmons College, Boston, MA 1997
  • B.S. – Boston University, Boston, MA 1986

Department of Curriculum & Instruction, College of Education

E268 Thompson Hall
State University of New York at Fredonia
Fredonia, NY 14063
(716) 673-3701
(716) 673-4664 fax