Barbara Ludlow, Ed.D.
Department Chairperson and Professor
Dr. Barbara L. Ludlow, chair of the West Virginia University Department of Special Education at the College of Education and Human Services, earned her doctorate in education from West Virginia University, a masters in arts from Cornell University, and bachelor’s in art from St. John’s University. She began her career serving as a special education teacher in public school systems in Wilmington, DE and Buckhannon, WV.
In the 1970’s Ludlow served as a part-time faculty member, before being appointed to a full-time position in 1983 and gaining tenure in 1995. In 2005, she was appointed as the chair of the special education department, a role she has served in since.
Although born and raised in metropolitan New York City, after living and working in rural West Virginia, Ludlow chose to focus her professional interests on special education and disability services in rural communities. By securing state and federal funding, Ludlow was able to pioneer new models of teacher education in special education, using the first field-based training at multiple centers around the state in the 1980s, then live television courses available at public viewing sites during the 1990s, and, finally, fully online programs accessible in the workplace or home beginning in 2001. In collaboration with her colleague, Dr. Melissa Hartley, she has also been involved in exploring applications of 3D virtual immersive environments in teacher education since 2010.
Ludlow has authored numerous articles on teacher education in special education and is a leading authority on rural special education and on technology-based delivery of personnel preparation programs. In 2017, she was awarded the Chester E. & Helen B. Derrick CEHS Endowed Professorship.