Dr. Wells received a PhD from the University of Denver, an MA from Adams State College, and a BA from the University of Southern Colorado . She was on the faculty of Metropolitan State College in the special education program from 1979–1988. She is a licensed psychologist and a certified school psychologist interested in psychological and educational assessment. She has also served as a psychologist for the Littleton public schools, and as a psychologist in private practice with the Minirth-Meier Clinics. Dr. Joan Wells joined Denver Seminary as an adjunct faculty member in 1988. She became a full-time faculty member of the counseling department in 1991 and moved to professor emeritus status in 2008. She is a member of the American Counseling Association, Christian Association for Psychological Studies, and Christians for Biblical Equality.
She has served as state president for the Council for Exceptional Children in Colorado and has chaired the Colorado Advisory Committee for Exceptional Children. She also coordinated the Political Action Network for Colorado on behalf of handicapped and gifted children. Dr. Wells is the author of book chapters relating to topics in pastoral care, pro-life issues, and gender studies and has conducted research under grants from the Association of Theological Schools and the US Department of Justice.