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Steve Benton, Ph.D. - IDEA. Manhattan, KS, US

Steve Benton, Ph.D.

Senior Research Officer | IDEA


Steve leads a research team that designs and conducts reliability and validity studies for IDEA products.






IDEA Coffee Talk Series: Myths and Misconceptions of Student Ratings-Gender Bias and More Campus Labs® Course Evaluations: Highlighting The Student Experience




Steve leads a research team that designs and conducts reliability and validity studies for IDEA products. He writes reports and journal articles, edits the longstanding series of IDEA Papers, and occasionally conducts training seminars about IDEA products. Upon earning his Ph.D. in psychological and cultural studies from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1983, Steve began his career at Kansas State University (KSU) where he remained until his retirement in 2010. During his career, his research interests have included cognitive processes involved in writing and memory from text, academic studying, college-student alcohol abuse prevention, and student ratings of instruction. A recognized author of multiple publications and papers, Steve served K-State for more than 25 years as both professor and department chair. He is a Fellow in the American Psychological Association and American Educational Research Association, as well as an Emeritus Professor of Special Education, Counseling and Student Affairs at KSU. He serves on the editorial boards of Contemporary Educational Psychology and Educational Psychology Review. With his wife, Sherry, they have a son and daughter who live with their families in Colorado. Steve and Sherry share in the joy of four grandchildren. In addition to spending time with family and friends, they enjoy riding bicycles, kayaking and paddle boarding.

Industry Expertise (2)



Areas of Expertise (8)

Educational Psychology

Higher Education

Product Testing

Educational Research


Academic Writing

Instructional Design

University Teaching

Education (1)

University of Nebraska: PhD, Psychological and Cultural Studies

Affiliations and Past Experience (9)

  • American Psychological Association : Fellow
  • American Educational Research Association : Fellow
  • Association of Institutional Researchers : Member
  • Kansas State University : Emeritus Professor of Special Education Counseling and Student Affairs
  • Academy of Fellows, Kansas State University, Founding Member, 2013
  • Notable Graduate, 90th Anniversary Celebration of University of Nebraska-Lincoln Teachers College, 1998
  • Award of Excellence, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Alumni Association, 1997
  • Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, 1991 to present
  • National Council on Measurement in Education, Member

Media Mentions (2)

Class Size Matters

Inside Higher Ed  online


Historically, research findings on the effects of class size on student achievement in postsecondary education are equivocal ...

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Online Evaluations Show Same Results, Lower Response Rate

The Chronicle of Higher Education  


The low response rate for online surveys could be a disadvantage, explained Steve Benton, a senior research officer at the IDEA Center and one of the paper’s authors ...

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Event and Conference Appearances (4)

Combining Faculty Perceptions and Chair Self Reflections in Performance Review

Academic Chairpersons Conference, February 2017  New Orleans, LA

The Design and Use of an Effective Student Ratings of Instruction (SRI) System

Higher Education Data Sharing Consortium, June 2016  Asheville, NC

Alignment of Global Outcomes for Assessment and Accreditation

Association for Institutional Research, May 2016  New Orleans, LA

Alignment of Global Outcomes for Assessment and Accreditation

Academic Chairpersons Conference, February 2016  Charleston, SC