I’ve been a high school English teacher and department chair, taught AVID and AP courses, and I now teach courses for first-year college students and future teachers as an English professor at California State University, Monterey Bay. My teaching and scholarship focus on developing students’ critical thinking and communication skills through a rhetorical approach to texts. I lead numerous workshops on reading, writing, rhetoric, and reasoning and have been an invited speaker at conferences around the country. I’m also involved with several K16 partnerships that focus on academic literacy and postsecondary success.
Teaching high school can sometimes feel like only getting to read the second book in a trilogy: you don’t know how the story started or what happens next. Making my own move to a college campus has given me a deeper understanding of what the next chapters of that story look like–and how to prepare all students for the adventures ahead.
If you ask me what I do for fun, I’ll probably say something to do with teaching and learning. I love to read, travel, collaborate with colleagues, learn from my mentors, attend conferences, and participate in book clubs and writers’ groups. And I love to teach. I’m always grateful for the energy, kindness, and insight my students bring to our classes. It’s an honor to be part of their journey.
My books include Teaching Arguments (Stenhouse 2015), Teaching Literature Rhetorically (Stenhouse 2018), and Writing Rhetorically (Stenhouse 2021). I’m also the co-editor of Fostering Habits of Mind in Today’s Students (Stylus 2015). One of the highlights of my career has been serving as the chair of the steering committee for California State University’s Expository Reading and Writing Curriculum (ERWC)–a nationally recognized academic literacy initiative created to help all students succeed after high school.
I live with my husband and two teenagers in Seaside, California. You can read more about me here or here.