Dr. Alex Middlewood is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science and became Department Chair in 2023. She earned her Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Kansas, her M.A. in Political Science from the University of Arkansas, and her B.S. in Political Science from Central Michigan University.

Dr. Middlewood’s research analyzes the political behavior of gun owners in the United States. She also publishes research on public opinion, gun policy, and Kansas politics.

Dr. Middlewood runs WSU’s Model United Nations program — which includes hosting the Great Plains Model UN collegiate conference and the Wichita Area Model UN high school conference. She is also the Associate Executive Director of the American Model United Nations conference in Chicago, IL.

Dr. Middlewood currently teaches American Politics, Civic Engagement and Democracy, Gender and Politics, Model United Nations, Plugging Into Politics (First Year Seminar), Public Opinion and Political Psychology, and Senior Thesis. She often uses applied learning pedagogy, like civic engagement activities and in-class simulations, to help students build connections between the course material and the political system.


Academic Interests and Expertise
  • Gun Politics
  • Public Opinion
  • Political Behavior
  • Civic Engagement
  • Gender
  • Policy Attitudes
  • Political Science Pedagogy
Areas of Teaching Interest
  • American Politics
  • Gender
  • Public Opinion & Political Psychology
  • Model United Nations
“Tactical is the New Black: Examining Gun Owner Fashion as Political Expression” with Noah S. Schwartz and Anne Wasinger, in Handbook of Fashion and Politics, Edited by Karen Kedrowski, Candice Ortbals, Lori Poloni-Staudinger, and J. Cherie Strachan, Palgrave Mcmillian Publishing. Expected publication Spring 2024.
“Started from the Bottom, Now We’re Here: Navigating the Job Market Without a ‘Top Tier’ PhD” with Rachel E. Finnell. In Strategies for Navigating Graduate School and Beyond, Edited by Kevin G. Lorentz II, Daniel J. Mallinson, Julia Marin Hellwege, Davin Phoenix, and J. Cherie Strachan. American Political Science Association. September 2022.
“The ‘Massacre Generation’: Young People and Attitudes About Mass Shooting Prevention” with Abigail Vegter. Social Science Quarterly, May 2022.
“A Silver Bullet: Gun Ownership and Political Participation in Rural America”, Great Plains Research, Special Issue: Rural Politics. October 2021. (Won the 2021 Leslie Hewes Award for Best Social Science Article in Great Plains Research)
“Staying Home on the Range: Social Capital and Social Distancing in the Great Plains During the COVID-19 Pandemic” with Mark R. Joslyn, Great Plains Research, Special Issue: Rural Politics. October 2021.
“Intersectionality in Action: Gun Ownership and Women’s Political Participation” with Mark R. Joslyn and Donald P. Haider-Markel. October 2019. Social Science Quarterly 100(6).
Public Scholarship
Kansas is Bleeding But Not Broken: Disintegrating Democracy in the Free State”, 50 Takes on Democracy series, Pulaski Institution. 22 June 2022.
The United Nations’ Greatest Accomplishment: A Whiteboard”, featured in War Room online journal, U.S. Army War College, 19 February 2020
Dr. Middlewood is also a regular contributor to the Insight Kansas collaborative, providing academic insight into Kansas politics. Her latest columns are available on the Insight Kansas website.