University at Buffalo

Africa S. Hands (she/her)

Africa S. Hands

Assistant Professor


Specialty/Research Focus

Information Science; Access and Equity; Library Science; Higher Education; Online and Distance Learning; Qualitative Research Methods

Education and Training:
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Queensland University of Technology, Information Systems (2018)
  • Master of Arts, Golden Gate University, Applied Counseling Psychology
  • Bachelor of Arts, University of California, Davis, Psychology
  • Master of Library and Information Science, San Jose State University, Library and Information Science
Awards and Honors:
  • Outstanding Faculty Research Scholar; East Carolina University, College of Education; 2022-05-09;
Recent Publications:
Journal Article:
  • Crumb, L., Chambers, C., Azano, A., Hands, A., Cuthrell, K., & Avent, M. (2023). Rural cultural wealth: Dismantling deficit ideologies of rurality. Journal of Multicultural Education.
  • Hands, A. (2023). Public libraries: Your partner in increasing college knowledge among nontraditional prospective students. Adult Learning.
  • Rapchak, M., Hands, A., & Hensley, M. (2023). Moving toward equity: Experiences with ungrading. Journal of Education in Library and Information Science.
  • Hands, A. (2021). Toward belonging and mutual hospitality: Decentering whiteness in the “new normal.” Reference Services Review.
  • Hands, A. (2020). Tapping into the assets of first-generation students during times of transition. Information and Learning Sciences.
Recent Presentations:
Invited Lectures:
  • Hands, A. (2024). Supporting college literacy in marginalized communities. Texas Women’s University, Research, Inclusion & Innovation Speaker Series.;
  • Davis, R., Maurici-Pollock, D., & Hands, A. (2023). What does it mean to be first?: Defining first-generation students. Panel presentation at the 2023 ALISE Annual Conference. Milwaukee, WI.;
  • Hands, A. & Candela, R. (2022). Educating the “Middle”: Public Library Support of Sustainable Development Goal 4. Poster presented at the Association for Information Science and Technology 85th Annual Meeting.;
  • Hands, A. (2023). "You Sound Like a Ph.D. Student“: Manifestations of Encouragement for Prospective Doctoral Students. Paper presented at the 2023 American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting in Chicago, IL.;
  • Hands, A. (2023). “I won’t lie. I’m pretty anti-Twitter”: LIS students’ perceptions toward the use of Twitter. Poster presented at the ASIS&T 2023 Mid-Year Conference.;
Recent Grants:
  • Positioning LIS Students for Career Success; Foundation and Research Organization; Association for Library and Information Science Education; Awarded; (09/30/2023-08/31/2024)
  • Public Library Support of College Literacy in Appalachia; Federal; Institute of Museum and Library Services; Continuing; (09/01/2021-08/31/2024)
Recent Activities:
Editorial and Review:
  • Manuscript reviewer, Journal of Education for Library and Information Science
Professional Service:
  • Planning Committee Member and Moderator of the Signature Leadership Panel, Virginia Tech Faculty Women of Color in the Academy Conference
  • Past-Chair, ALA Library Research Round Table
Recent Editorships:
  • Editorial Board Member; The Journal of First-Generation Student Success

Contact Information

Phone: 716-645-1412

View CV