Outstanding Book Award

The Outstanding Book Award recognizes a book that makes a significant contribution to the study of higher education. The award is open to any book published within the last year that advances theories, knowledge, practices, pedagogies, and/or policies in the field of higher education.

Nominations for 2024 are now closed.



Nomination Evaluation Criteria

When reviewing nominations, the awards committee will make decisions based on the following categories of evaluation:

  1. Significance of the research questions, conceptual/theoretical argument, or pedagogical approach
  2. New insight and knowledge that better informs the understanding of higher education
  3. Quality and rigor of the methodological approach
  4. Contribution/impact of the discovery or innovation
  5. Accessibility of the content
  6. Clarity of the writing
  7. Overall presentation of the work

The Outstanding Book Award is presented for a book within a year of publication. For 2024, this includes books published between June 1, 2023 and May 31, 2024.

Books may be single-authored or co-authored, however, no edited collections will be considered for nomination. 

Books may have been published globally, but for the purposes of consideration must be available in English.


2024 Awards Timeline

  • Nominations for the 2024 award season are now closed.
    • NOTE: This is a shorter nomination window than all other awards due to the time requirement for review.
    • Due to the number of submissions and the review process, no late submissions will be accepted; as such, nominators are encouraged to submit their nominations well in advance of this deadline.
  • Nominators and nominees will be informed of decisions in mid-September.
  • An announcement of recipients will be sent to the ASHE membership in late September.
  • The award recipient will present their book’s research during a special session of the conference, to be coordinated by the committee chair, ASHE Staff, and award recipient.
  • The recipient(s) will be recognized during the ASHE Awards Ceremony during the Annual Conference.

Nomination Requirements

Each submission will need:

  • Name, Title, Position, Institution, Email, and Phone Number of Coordinating Nominator.
  • Name, Title, Position, Institution, Email, and Phone Number of Nominee.
  • A submission abstract (no more than 300 words) that provides a concise description of the book, including its purpose, methods, scope, and main conclusions. This should also include the full citation of the book. 
  • A nomination statement up to 750 words that demonstrates how the book meets the award evaluation criteria and contributes to the field of higher education. 
  • A table of contents from the book.
  • One representative chapter from the book that best exemplifies the contribution/impact of the book.

Nominators will be contacted within one week of the nomination and asked to send the nominated book (either electronically as an e-book or via mail as a hard copy) to the 6 members of the Outstanding Book Award Committee.

The coordinating nominator, as well as the award nominee(s) (and subsequently recipient(s)), must be current members of ASHE. For books with multiple authors, the first author must be a member of the Association.

Due to the increased number of nominations received in recent years, each nominee will be limited to one nomination. In the event multiple nominations are submitted, the committee chair will notify the coordinating nominators requesting they consolidate their nominations.

Questions about the 2024 award process can be sent to awards@ashe.ws.

Nominations for 2024 are now closed.


Awards Committee

The ASHE Outstanding Book Award Committee is a standing committee of the Board of Directors. Committee members are recommended by the President to the Board of Directors and serve 3 year terms.

2024 Committee Members:

  • Chase Catalano, Virginia Tech
  • Tonisha Lane, Virginia Tech
  • Olivia Morales, University of Florida
  • Brian Pusser, University of Virginia
  • Paul Rubin, University of Utah
  • Doris Watson, University of Neveda, Las Vegas

Past Recipients

2023: Terah J. Stewart

Sex Work On Campus

Additional Recipients

  • 2022: Native Presence and Sovereignty in College: Sustaining Indigenous Weapons to Defeat Systemic Monsters by Dr. Amanda R. Tachine (YouTube Link)
  • 2021: The Campus Color Line: College Presidents and the Struggle for Black Freedom by Dr. Eddie R. Cole
  • 2020: Gay Liberation to Campus Assimilation: Early Non-Heterosexual Student Organizing at Midwestern Universities by Patrick Dilley (YouTube Link)
  • 2019: White Guys on Campus: Racism, White Identity, and the Myth of “Post-Racial” Higher Education by Nolan L. Cabrera
  • 2018: Heather Rowan-Kenyon, Ana M. Martinez Aleman, and Mandy Savitz-Romer