John Colombo received his Ph.D. in Psychology (1981) from the State University of New York at Buffalo. After one year at Youngstown State University (1981-1982), and six years (1982-1988) as a research associate with the Bureau of Child Research at the University of Kansas, Colombo joined the faculty of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Kansas in 1988, and he has been a professor in the Department of Psychology since January of 2002.
Colombo became the third director of the Life Span Institute September 2007. Colombo also serves as the director and principal investigator of the University of Kansas Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center.
Colombo has previously served the University of Kansas as faculty chair of the Human Subjects Committee on the Lawrence campus (1993-2012), as an associate dean of KU’s Graduate School (2001-2004) and as acting chair of the Department of Psychology (2005-2006). He joined the KU faculty in 1988 preceded by six years as a postdoctoral trainee and research associate.
Along with being an active participant in the Cognitive and Brain Science and Developmental Science doctoral programs within the Department of Psychology, he is affiliated with three interdisciplinary doctoral programs: Child Language, Clinical Child Psychology and Neuroscience.