University of Southern Indiana

Graduate Student Spotlight

Wright presents thesis at the Geological Society of America Annual Meeting

Written by , Assistant Professor of English
Submitted by Dr. Charles Conaway, Director, Master of Arts in English

C. Wright headshot imageCarrie L. Wright completed her Master of Arts in English (MAE) December 2017. Ms. Wright also holds a Master of Science in Geology from Miami University of Ohio, a Master of Science in Teaching from Wright State University, and she is an Instructor of Geology in USI’s Geology and Physics Department where she has worked with hundreds of students since 2006. Her groundbreaking MAE thesis, Writing to Learn for Scientific Literacy: A Curriculum for Historical Geology, discusses her innovative, 10-step Writing to Learn (WTL) curriculum to improve students’ scientific literacy in the Nature of Science (NOS), particularly science epistemology. She describes her curriculum, its theoretical underpinnings in composition studies and science education research, and analyzes student writing from courses in which she implemented her curriculum to test her hypothesis: engaging students in the study of science through language arts—critical reading of and writing about scientific texts and the NOS—enhances students’ scientific literacy.

Ms. Wright notes the following:

The goal of scientific literacy through science education should not be to indoctrinate students into submitting to the hegemonic authority of science in a form of “acquiescent democracy” in which questioning science equates to scientific illiteracy (Lehr 37). Rather, the goal of this WTL curriculum is to enhance student scientific literacy through increased fluency in the languaging processes of science epistemology so they will be better able to code-switch to scientific language, and better understand the nature of science. These skills and understandings related to the scientific culture of power will allow these students’ voices to be heard and considered legitimate such that they can participate more effectively in democratic debate and discourse about science.

She presented her thesis research October 2017 at The Geological Society of America Annual Meeting in Seattle, WA, through a presentation titled “Writing To Learn For Scientific Literacy: Evaluation And Research Implications Of A Curriculum For Historical Geology” https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2017AM/meetingapp.cgi/Paper/299597. Additionally, Ms. Wright will present her curriculum at USI’s Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning’s Celebration of Learning and Teaching Spring 2018. Ms. Wright plans to publish her research in the Journal of Geoscience Education. She is also working on a co-edited book proposal titled Resisting Masculinized L/logos and Rhetoric of Distance: Writing Feminism Across the Curriculum, an interdisciplinary collection of chapters that theorize and propose solutions for problems related to how knowledge and writing are masculinized, and how that masculinization determines what counts as credible, legitimate knowing.

Ms. Wright resides on Evansville’s West side with her husband, son, three cats, dog, and bearded dragon.


Mishler attends NIH Short Course on Genomics
Submitted by , Graduate Marketing & Recruitment Coordinator

Marcia Mishler of Evansville, Indiana, was selected to attend the annual Short Course on Genomics with the National Institute of Health, which offers middle and high school faculty members the opportunity to attend lectures from renowned researchers from the National Human Genome Research Institute. Mishler was one of 25 educators chosen nationally.

Mishler has earned numerous graduate degrees from the University of Southern Indiana including: master of science in Education (’99), master of arts in Liberal Studies (’10) and master of arts in Second Language Acquisition, Policy and Culture (’17). Mishler is a USI CAP (College Achievement Program) Instructor at Gibson Southern High School.

“Ms. Mishler’s participation in the prestigious National Human Genome Research Institute speaks to her strong intellect and superb academic achievements in the master’s program in Second Language Acquisition, Policy and Culture (MASPC)”, said Dr. Silvia Rode, chair of World Languages and Cultures. “Moreover, her selection to a STEM focused research project underlines the uniqueness of the MASPC program in terms of academic preparedness and its far-reaching applicability in the areas of language acquisition and multilingual and multicultural awareness studies and policy-making.”

If you would like to learn more about Graduate Student Travel and Research funding opportunities, visit the Student Resources section of our website!

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