Professor Muncy's scholarship has focused especially on social policy and progressive reform movements in twentieth-century America. Her first book, Creating a Female Dominion in American Reform, 1890-1935, analyzes the role of middle-class white women in creating the U.S. welfare state. Her second book, Engendering America, is a documentary history of gender in the U.S. since 1865. This work is co-edited with Professor Sonya Michel and is intended for classroom use. Her current project, a political biography of activist Josephine Roche, analyzes America’s progressive reform tradition from the Progressive Era through the Great Society. It will be part of the Politics and Society Series at Princeton University Press.
While the early twentieth-century first captured Professor Muncy's attention, the postwar period has engaged her more recently. Her article, “Coal-Fired Reform: Social Citizenship, Dissident Miners, and the Great Society” (Journal of American History, 2009) argues that dissent among rank-and-file workers helped to spark the reforms of the Great Society, and "Cooperative Motherhood and Democratic Civic Culture in Postwar Suburbia, 1940-1965," (Journal of Social History, 2004) insists that the commitment to participatory democracy, so central to the New Left, was perfectly in keeping with the values of many postwar suburban parents. The focus of earlier articles ranges from women's participation in partisan politics ("'Women Demand Recognition': Women in Colorado's Election of 1912") to the ways that gender informed debates on economic policy early in the century ("Trustbusting and White Manhood, 1898-1914").
Professor Muncy has received several grants and fellowships. In 2007-08, she was a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and she returned to the Center as a public policy scholar in the summer of 2009. She won a Fulbright (declined), an NEH Summer Stipend, and GRB Semester awards. She has served on the Editorial Board of the Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. She chaired the Scott-Lerner Dissertation Prize committee for the Organization of American Historians, and has been awarded the Outstanding Teacher Certificate of the Panhellenic Association many times. In 2004 and 2005, she was featured in Who's Who Among America's Teachers.