Cole D. Taratoot

Image of Cole Taratoot. Assistant Professor
email
(205) 934-8685
Heritage Hall 413

Research Interests: Administrative law, public administration, public law, judicial politics, bureaucratic politics, administrative law judges

Office Hours: TH 1:30 - 4:00 p.m.; and by appointment

Education:
  • BS, University of West Georgia, 1999
  • MPA, University of West Georgia, 2001
  • PhD, Georgia State University, 2008

Dr. Taratoot was born in Atlanta, Georgia. His research focuses on the federal judiciary, bureaucracy, and public law with a specialty in administrative law. Previously an assistant professor at Western Kentucky University and a Visiting Assistant Professor at Western Washington University, he has taught many courses, including criminal procedure, constitutional law, civil rights and liberties, law and society, American government, and statistics.

Dr. Taratoot primarily relies upon quantitative analysis and methodology in his research. His dissertation, "Administrative Law Judge Decision Making in a Political Environment: 1991–2007," won a National Science Foundation dissertation improvement grant and consisted of an original data set of over 11,000 observations. Research from his dissertation has been published in American Politics Research (co-authored with Robert Howard, Georgia State University), Journal of Public Administrative Research and Theory, and Law & Policy. Dr. Taratoot is currently constructing a database consisting of administrative law judge (ALJ) decisions and biographical information across all federal agencies employing ALJs, including the Social Security Administration, the Federal Communications Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Occupational Safety & Health Review Commission.

In his spare time, Dr. Taratoot enjoys spending time with his cats (Izzy and Joe) and bowling, and playing tennis, poker, and golf.


Follow the linked course names to see sample syllabi which describe course aims, learning objectives, requirements, and schedules. These are samples only. The instructor may make changes to these syllabi in future courses.

  • “The Influence of Administrative Law Judge and Political Appointee Decisions on Appellate Courts in National Labor Relations Board Cases,” Law & Policy 36 (2014): 35-67.
  • “The Politics of Administrative Law Judge Decision Making in Civil Penalty Cases at the Environmental Protection Agency: 1992-2010,” American Politics Research 42 (2014): 114-140.
  • “Review of Administrative Law Judge Decisions by the Political Appointees of the NLRB, 1991-2006,” Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory 41 (2013): 551-80.
  • The Labor of Judging: Examining Administrative Law Judge Decisions,” with Robert Howard, American Politics Research 39 (No. 5, 2011): 832-58.
  • With Strings Attached: Statutory Delegations of Authority to the Executive Branch,” with David Nixon, Public Administration Review 71 (No. 4, 2011): 637-44.

  • Ronald Kleinknecht Excellence in Teaching Award, Western Washington University, 2012
  • Nominated for the Pi Sigma Alpha award for the best conference paper, Western Political Science Association Annual Meeting, 2012
  • Nominated for Patrick J. Fett Award for the best paper on the scientific study of Congress and the Presidency, Midwest Political Science Association Annual Meeting, 2006
  • Recipient of the League of Women Voter’s Lee Walsh Award for Public Service, 2001