PDF of full research statement


I position myself as a composition scholar with research interests in higher education, literacy studies, and digital and multimodal composing. My efforts to better understand and support first-generation and working class college students draws on and contributes to existing research in both composition and higher education. Similarly, my interests in both writing and speaking practices in a variety of academic and non-academic contexts pools together composition research and literacy studies scholarship. Finally, my attention to college students’ experiences as composers, not only consumers, of digital and multimodal texts positions my work within computers and writing scholarship with specific interest in digital and multimodal composing.

Overall, my research projects are motivated by an interest in diversity and inclusion—by an interest in expanding what gets valued in academic spaces. From first-generation college students, to working class teachers and students, to multimodal composition, to course blogs: I am interested in better including people and practices that might traditionally be excluded or devalued in academic spaces.


Schiavone, Aubrey and Anna Knutson. “Pedagogy at the Crossroads: Intersections Between Instructor and Student Identities Across Institutional Contexts” in Class in the Composition Classroom: Pedagogy and the Working Class. Logan, UT: Utah State University Press, December 2017.

Lang, Dwight and Aubrey Schiavone: Editors. Social Class Voices: Student Stories from the University of Michigan Bicentennial. Michigan Publishing, September 2017.

Schiavone, Aubrey. “Consumption, Production, and Rhetorical Knowledge in Visual and Multimodal Textbooks.” College English, March 2017.


Understanding Working Class First-Generation College Students’ Literacies

Screen Shot 2016-06-27 at 8.40.07 PMMy dissertation project is a qualitative interview study with 15 first-generation college students; this research is aimed at better understanding, celebrating, and supporting the speaking and writing practices that first-generation college students practice in a variety of academic and non-academic contexts. More specifically, I analyze students’ talk about their speaking and writing practices in first-year writing, home, work, and extracurricular contexts. Drawing on scholarship in composition, higher education, and literacy studies, this projects’ rich description of first-gen students’ experiences allows for greater access and inclusivity of this marginalized student group and their attendant literacy practices.

Shared Course Blogs and Undergraduate Student Professionalization

This collaborative research project analyzes the use of a shared course blog in three disciplines: Education, English, and Nursing. By collecting and analyzing a variety of qualitative data—including classroom observations, pre- and post-observation interviews with course instructors, and student and instructor posts published on the course blogs—this project shows that shared course blogs can be used to support undergraduate student professionalization as students work in their Aubrey Writing in the School of Education copy (1)chosen disciplines and prepare for work in their professional fields.  Specifically, shared course blogs allow undergraduate students to share in a community of like-minded emerging practitioners, connect to major issues in their disciplines or fields, and practice professional representation of self. Overall, this project contributes a more detailed understanding of the affordances of this commonly used instructional tool of shared course blogs.