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Deborah Helsing

Lecturer on Education
Program Associate
Adjunct Lecturer on Education
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Degree:  Ed.D., Harvard Graduate School of Education, (2003); Ed.M., University of Michigan, (1991)
Email:  [javascript protected email address]
Phone:  617.496.3229
Office:  Larsen 510
Faculty Assistant:  Jeffrey Brisbin


Deborah Helsing is a researcher and author at Way To Grow and is the Director of Coach Learning Programs at Minds at Work. Her primary role is to provide training and supervision to coaches (and other people-development professionals) working to incorporate the Immunity-to-Change approach into their practice and their organizations. At the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Helsing co-teaches a course in personal mastery and provides individualized executive coaching to high potential educational leaders as part of the Doctor of Educational Leadership (Ed.L.D.) program.In her former role as Senior Program Associate at Harvard's Change Leadership Group, Helsing worked with her colleagues to better understand school transformation and to design high-quality professional development programs for educational leaders. She holds a B.A. in English from Grinnell College, a master's degree from the University of Michigan, and a doctorate from HGSE.

Click here to see a full list of Deborah Helsing's courses.


Dissertation Research Grant, Association for Moral Education,(2002)


An Everyone Culture: Becoming a Deliberately Developmental Organization (with Robert Kegan, Lisa Lahey, Matthew Miller, and Andy Fleming),(2016)

Right Weight, Right Mind: The ITC Approach to Permanent Weight Loss (with Robert Kegan and Lisa Lahey),(2014)

The Immunity to Change Coach’s Guide (with Lisa Lahey and Robert Kegan),(2011)

Human Development. In R.A. Couto (Ed.), Political and civic leadership: A reference handbook. (Vol. 2, pp. 678-687).,(2010)

“Unlocking Leadership Potential: Overcoming Immunities to Change” (with Lisa Lahey) in Extraordinary Leadership: Addressing the Gaps in Senior Executive Development.,(2010)

Learning to walk; walking to learn: Reconsidering the walkthrough as an improvement strategy. (with R. Lemons) Phi Delta Kappan, 90(7), 478-484.,(2009)

High quality teaching and learning: Do we know it when we see it (and when we don't)? (with R. Lemons) Education Canada, 48(5), 14-18.,(2008)

Leadership practice communities: Improving teaching and learning. (with R. Lemons) Leadership, 38(1), 14-17, 38.,(2008)

Putting the "development" in professional development: Understanding and overturning educational leaders' immunities to change. (with A. Howell, R. Kegan, & L. Lahey. Harvard Educational Review, 78(3), 437-465.,(2008)

Regarding uncertainty in teachers and teaching. Teaching and Teacher Education, 23(8), 1317-1333.,(2007)

Style of knowing regarding uncertainties. Curriculum Inquiry, 37(1), 33-70.,(2007)

Change leadership: A practical guide to transforming our schools. ( with T. Wagner, R. Kegan, L. Lahey, R. Lemons, J. Garnier, A. Howell, & H. Thurber Rasmussen. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.,(2006)

Best Practices For Leading Professional Development (with A. Howell),(2004)

"Applying Constructive-Developmental Theories of Adult Development to ABE and ESOL practices" (with E. Drago-Severson and R. Kegan) in Review of Adult Learning and Literacy (ed. by J. Comings, B. Garner, and C. Smith),(2004)

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