She is the professor of Political Science at Stanford since 2007. Martha Crenshaw was one of the pioneers in terrorism studies along with Paul Wilkinson, Ariel Merari, Bruce Hoffman and Alex Schmid. After getting Bachelor of Arts from Newcomb College of Tulane University in 1967, she was also the Woodrow Wilson Fellow, she joined the Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Virginia in 1973 where Martha earned the prestigious Phi Beta Kappa honour.
From 1977 to 78 she earned National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship for Independent Study and was fellow at Fellow, Richardson Institute for Conflict and Peace Research.
Martha"s post doctoral fellowship at the Russell Sage Foundation (1987 - 1988) and she also earned the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation Research Grant (1987-1988) and Ford Foundation Project Grant (1987-1989). From 1987 she was the Institute for East-West Security Studies Scholar for a year and earned Outstanding Alumna Award from Newcomb College in 1989 and Pew Faculty Fellowship (1992-1993).
Martha was the Colin and Nancy Campbell Professor of Global Issues and Democratic Thought and professor of government at Wesleyan University in Middletown, where she taught from 1987 to 2007. She served on the Executive Board of Women in International Security and is a former President and Councilor of the International Society of Political Psychology (ISPP).
She coordinated the working group on political explanations of terrorism for the 2005 Club de Madrid International Summit on Democracy, Terrorism and Security.
In 2005-2006 she was a Guggenheim Fellow. Since 2005 she has been a lead investigator with the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism known as Strategic Arms Reduction Talks at the University of Maryland, funded by the Department of Homeland Security. In 2009 she was awarded a grant from the National Science Foundation, Department of Defense Minerva Initiative for a project on "mapping terrorist organizations." She serves on the editorial boards of the journals International Security, Political Psychology, Security Studies, Dynamics of Asymmetric Conflict, and Terrorism and Political Violence.