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David McElhattan

Photo of David McElhattan

Assistant Professor

Sociology - Law and Society 

David McElhattan joins Purdue as an assistant professor in the Department of Sociology.

He received his Ph.D. in sociology from Northwestern University and was previously a doctoral fellow at the American Bar Foundation. He holds undergraduate degrees in sociology and philosophy from Boston University.

McElhattan’s research focuses on relationships between criminal justice policy and social inequalities. He is particularly interested in the effects of criminal records on the life chances of record subjects and the role of law and policy in constructing these consequences. His current work explores legally mandated criminal background screening in the United States, examining the rise of laws that institute background checks in areas ranging from employment and professional licensing to housing, volunteer work, and family rights.