Bette L. Bottoms
Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs and Dean of the Honors College
Bette L. Bottoms is Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs, Dean of the Honors College, and Professor of Psychology at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). She is currently helping to spearhead UIC’s unprecedented effort to improve undergraduate success. She co-chairs the Student Success Planning Initiative Steering Committee, which is engaging eight task forces of over 200 UIC faculty, staff, and students to develop a comprehensive plan for improving student retention and graduation rates at UIC. Vice Provost Bottoms also leads a number of other initiatives and units on campus that implement high-impact practices to improve student success, including the Undergraduate Success Center, Summer College, and the Undergraduate Research Experience. A number of campus units providing supports for students from diverse backgrounds report to her, including the Study Abroad Office, LARES, Army-ROTC, the Office of Special Scholarships and Programs, and the Office of Classroom Environments. In addition, she is Dean of the UIC Honors College.
With funding from an anonymous foundation, Vice Provost Bottoms is expanding the conversation about student success beyond UIC through her founding of the Chicago Collaborative for Undergraduate Success, which brings together leaders from Chicago universities with the goal of sharing best practices and data that can help increase undergraduate success throughout the city of Chicago. In recognition of her leadership in this area, she was invited to join the core leadership team for Thrive Chicago, an initiative that is being led by the Mayor’s Office to develop a collective impact model in Chicago that creates a true cradle-to-career continuum of services for young people.
Vice Provost Bottoms’ past administrative service includes membership on the UIC 2010 Strategic Thinking Committee and the campus Promotion and Tenure committee, and prior appointments as Associate Department Chairperson and Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Psychology, and Associate Dean in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
Vice Provost Bottoms has been on the faculty at UIC since 1992. She has received 9 awards for excellence in undergraduate and graduate teaching and mentoring, including every such UIC award and her disciplinary field’s highest awards.
Nationally, she is Fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA) and Past President of APA’s Society for Child and Family Policy and Practice and of its Section on Child Maltreatment. Her research on child abuse, children's eyewitness testimony, and jurors' perceptions of child victims and of juvenile offenders has been published widely, funded by the National Institute on Mental Health and the National Science Foundation, and recognized with the American Psychology-Law Society’s Saleem Shaw Early Career Award. She has edited five books and served on the editorial boards of journals such as Law and Human Behavior; Psychology, Public Policy, and Law; and Child Maltreatment.