Current RPC PhD Students


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Amanda Arp is a PhD student in the Rhetoric and Professional Communication program of the English Department. Her current primary focus is on developing improved pedagogical approaches through research on metacognition, composition and Team-Based Learning. At present, Amanda is examining a connection between speech and writing by comparing metacognitive reflection in speech to metacognitive reflection in composition through analyzing metacognitive reflections of students from a speech course at Iowa State. Additionally, she is furthering research on Team-Based Learning by examining transcripts and surveys from students in teams from a speech course at Iowa State. During her time as a PhD student and as a Presidential Scholar, Amanda also plans to pursue additional research interests in narrative, visual rhetoric, gaming theory, fat studies and creativity. Amanda’s experiences as a student, a writing coach, a writer and a speech teacher inspire her to research, present, and publish on these topics and will continue to fuel her growth as a scholar and educator.

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Matt Baker earned a BA in economics and an MBA from Brigham Young University. He is currently pursuing a PhD in rhetoric and professional communication from Iowa State University.

Matt worked professionally as a financial application consultant, client services manager, and quality assurance manager for GOLDPoint Systems. As part of his professional experience, he functioned as communication liaison for a key client at GOLDPoint Systems; consulted for Adobe Systems where he standardized the visual design of industry primers across Adobe; and interned with Zions Bancorporation where he assisted with and documented a big-data, predictive analytics study that was eventually submitted to the Federal Reserve and presented at a banking and analytics conference.

As a PhD student, Matt currently works as a communication consultant at the Writing and Media Center at Iowa State University. In addition, he works as a teaching assistant and has taught foundation communication, business communication, report and proposal writing. He will be teaching technical communication during spring semester 2016.

Matt’s current research interests include employment communication, invention, and social media communication. He recently became coauthor (along with Dr. William H. Baker) of the textbook Writing and Speaking for Business (4th edition), which came out in print in August 2015. In addition, his first coauthored journal article (along with Iowa State faculty Tina Coffelt and Bob Corey) has been accepted for publication at Business and Professional Communication Quarterly. Matt has presented his research at the Annual International Conference of the Association for Business Communication, the Conference on College Composition and Communication, and the National Communication Association Annual Conference.

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Tom Ballard earned his BA and MS in English with an emphasis in Technical Writing at Utah State University in Logan, Utah. After working as a technical writer for about four years while earning his MS, he decided to come join the PhD in Rhetoric and Professional Communication program here at Iowa State. Tom’s research interests include online discourses (especially memetics) and technical and professional communication practice and pedagogy. He’s also been an editor in some form or another for almost seven years, so The Chicago Manual of Style is one of his best friends.

Tom’s non-academic interests include popular culture, especially video games and movies, and formerly skiing and hiking (he’s still figuring out how to replace those here in the flat Midwest).

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cosgrove_samSamantha Cosgrove is a first year PhD student in the Rhetoric and Professional Communication program. She received her MA in Rhetoric and Composition at the University of South Florida. Her thesis used discourse analysis to analyze FEMA document audiences—who is privileged in knowledge making and who is left out. Her current research interest areas are risk communication, accessibility, and web design. She has experience teaching English Composition courses and hopes to teach Technical Communication courses in the future.

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Laura Dunn is a PhD student in the Rhetoric and Professional Communication program. Her main interests are in pedagogy (curriculum development, online teaching) and rhetorical approaches to health-related topics. Laura enjoys teaching a range of courses such as composition, business communication, technical communication, and biological communication. Her academic degrees include: B.A. Iowa State University—Speech Communication; B.S.N. Upper Iowa University—Nursing; M.A. Iowa State University—Rhetoric, Composition, and Professional Communication.

As both a registered nurse and a communication scholar, Laura hopes to blend her interests together into interdisciplinary practice. Current areas of research interests include patient discharge instructions, nursing workplace narratives, and anti-vaccine messaging.

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Shannon N. Fanning is a doctoral student in the Rhetoric and Professional Communication program. She holds an MA in English from Montclair State University and a BA in Communication from Ramapo College. Before coming to Iowa State, Shannon worked as an adjunct English professor at Hudson County Community College in New Jersey and as an e-commerce copywriter and copyeditor. In addition to her academic endeavors, she continues to consult with top retail brands, working with them to develop strategic copy for their products. Shannon draws on her experience both inside and outside of the university to explore the ways in which communication skills transfer between contexts. This experience informs her research on the intersections of transfer theory, genre studies, and composition pedagogy. Shannon also researches health/medical rhetorics, and is particularly interested in the rhetorics of risk and fear associated with psychiatric and developmental disorders. She also investigates the role that visuals and data visualizations play in the construction of risk, particularly as related to scientific controversies.

Shannon teaches courses in both English and Business Communication. This year, she’ll present work at the Council of Writing Program Administrators Conference (CWPA), Association for the Rhetoric of Science & Technology Preconference at the National Communication Association (ARST), and the Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC).

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Paula Fender is a PhD student in Rhetoric and Professional Communication here at Iowa State University.

Paula earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communication from Jackson State University and a Master of Arts degree in Technical and Expository Writing from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.  Teaching at small Historically Black Colleges and community colleges ignited Paula’s passion for teaching marginalized groups, particularly African American students, how to effectively compose written texts.  In order to fulfill her pedagogical goals, Paula identified research interests that include addressing issues in scholarly discussions and in establishing pedagogical practices that African American college students need when communicating in multi-modal composition.

Paula is interested in discovering how African American and other marginalized students can effectively communicate in written, oral, visual, and electronic rhetorical modes.  When looking at mainstream scholarly research, Paula noticed that although there has been some discussion of African American and other marginalized students and composition, she found there is a negligible amount of research on the multi-modality of their composition practices.  It is Paula’s goal to begin filling in the gaps in the literature and to provide a platform for inclusion of African Americans and other marginalized groups to thrive in contemporary rhetorical and multi-modal composition classrooms.

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Philip B. Gallagher is a second year Rhetoric and Professional Communication PhD candidate specializing in New Media Learning, Digital theory, and Computer-based pedagogy research. He earned his M.A. in English with an emphasis in Composition and Rhetoric (2012), and his B.A. in English with a focus on Creative Writing (2009) from Eastern Illinois University. He also earned his A.A. in English (2007) from Lake Land College. Mr. Gallagher’s current research interests include: knowledge management in digital learning communities, design thinking for professional communication online, normalizing rhetorics in digital genre studies, computer interface communication and learning, and the development of New Media pedagogy.

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Dale Grauman studies writing and the teaching of writing. A while back, he speculated that his students would value their compulsory writing classes more if their assignments gave them more opportunities to explore how they would use writing in their college majors or in their future careers. Now he’s working on a research project to test that assumption. He is also developing a project in which he would collaborate with professors in other disciplines to assess the transfer of writing knowledge from first-year composition into other university writing contexts.

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Jill Grauman is a fourth-year PhD student in the Rhetoric and Professional Communication program. Her research interests include composition pedagogy, writing program administration, and assessment. Before coming to Iowa State, Jill received her MA in rhetoric and professional communication from Washington State University in Pullman, WA and her BA in English and communication studies from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. At Iowa State, Jill has taught ISUComm Foundation courses and worked as a graduate consultant at the Writing and Media Center. When she is not working, Jill enjoys watching movies (both good and bad), reading books not related to her studies, and cross-stitching very dorky things.

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Daniel Henke is a PhD student in the Rhetoric and Professional Communication program. Before coming to Iowa State University, he spent the last two years teaching English literature, composition, and English as a second language at the University of Wisconsin, Richland. In addition to his teaching duties, he was also the director of the writing center, known as the Woodman Learning Center. Daniel obtained a BA in English from the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point and an MA in English literature and textual interpretation from the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire. Daniel is deeply interested in existential Absurdism and Albert Camus. Daniel’s research interest are vast, but he enjoys connecting Camus’ writing with multiple theoretical approaches to better understand Camus’ intricate and complicated writings. He is also interested in writing center theory and practice, Marxism, psychoanalytical theory, postcolonialism, and compositional studies. Daniel actively tries to publish his work and is featured in multiple scholarly journals and has presented his findings at conferences across the nation.

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krista-klocke2Krista Klocke earned her BA in Speech Communication and Communication Studies with a Minor in Psychology and a Certificate in Leadership Studies from Iowa State University. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Rhetoric and Professional Communication here at Iowa State with a teaching assistantship in the Public Speaking Program, teaching lab sections of the SpCm212 course.

Krista loves teaching and mentoring college students in public speaking, communication theory, leadership development, and other areas related to rhetoric and interpersonal communication. She is passionate about supporting students in their academic journeys. Her research interests include political communication (especially women’s political communication), the rhetoric of the women’s suffrage movement, and discourses related to the land and the environment.

 

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Bryan Lutz is a Ph.D. candidate in Rhetoric and Professional Communication here at Iowa State University. Since arriving at Iowa State, he has worked to administer and develop ISUComm’s Moodle ISUComm Courses, as well as develop and pilot the department’s new ePortfolio platform ISUComm Sites. He is also an active member of the RCPC graduate student club Phorum, and stresses that his door is always open to people who want to talk about teaching with technology.

Bryan came to the program from Ohio University where he received his master’s degree in Rhetoric and Composition. Bryan’s research navigates convergent sites between studies in new media, rhetoric of advocacy, and composition pedagogy. His recent publication “Composing to Change Nations: Teaching New Media and the Arab Spring in First-Year Composition” argues a strategy for teaching composition with new media that empowers students to become participants in social movements in the United States.

Outside of the department, Bryan is webmaster and president of the hapkido division of the Cyclone Martial Arts club, which teach self-defense to Iowa State students and members of the Ames community.

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Lauren Malone is a military brat who started life in Texas, and ended up in Iowa. She is a second year PhD candidate in Rhetoric and Professional Communication. She graduated from Central College with a B.A. in English, and from London Metropolitan University with an M.A. in Professional Writing. Academic interests include writing across curriculum, interpersonal communication in business, game studies in writing and curriculum development, and intercultural communication.

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Rachel Collier Murdock holds a BA in journalism from Brigham Young University and a MA in Mass Communication from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Her current research interests are in science communication, particularly public presentations by scientists. She is also interested in the portrayal of science and scientists in the media, particularly local media. She teaches public speaking, composition, communication arts and mass communication classes, and is interested in the intersection and overlap of these communication disciplines in classroom and workplace situations.

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Vic Perry is a Ph.D. Candidate in the RPC program and a Lecturer in the English Department at ISU.  He earned a MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College and a Masters in Rhetoric from Carnegie Mellon University.  Vic’s research into the ways that fictionality is used for rhetorical purposes draws upon both rhetorical and narrative theory. Vic is currently completing his dissertation, titled On the Use of Participatory Fiction for Persuasion and Pedagogy.  His dissertation proposes an analytic theory for understanding the distinctive uses of fictionality in rhetorical discourse, with particular emphasis on the participatory fictional roles demanded by business communication problems and ethics thought experiments.

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Raeann Ritland earned her BA in English Education from Wartburg College with a minor in writing. She came to ISU and earned an MS in Journalism and Mass Communication before then joining the English Department where she is currently pursuing a PhD in Rhetoric and Professional Communication. Raeann has taught SP CM 212 in the past and is currently teaching ENGL 150/250. Her primary research interest includes health communication and its influence on people’s attitudes and behavioral intentions.

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Kathy Rose earned a BA in English with minors in secondary education and math from what was then Southern Utah State University. While teaching language arts and math at T.H. Bell Jr. High in Ogden, Utah, she obtained an MA in British and American Literature from the University of Utah. Using every bit of her higher education skills and knowledge as a stay at home mom for many years, she has also taught several writing courses at Weber State University and at Des Moines Area Community College. She now enjoys teaching a wide variety of courses at ISU, including honors composition, learning community composition and advanced communication courses, business writing, biological communication, and English Education student teaching. With an emphasis in writing pedagogy, her research has included peer review (specifically online peer review), writing center tutor interactions, reflections (specifically eportfolio reflections), Writing about Writing, and transfer. She has presented her work at the Conference on College Composition and Communication, Conference of Writing Program Administrators, European Association for the Teaching of Academic Writing, and Great Plains Alliance for Computers and Writing. She has a forthcoming chapter in Next Steps, a book about Writing About Writing pedagogy. Her dissertation work addresses the experiences of students who take Advanced Placement English in high school and how that training transfers to their writing experiences in the university. She loves creating curricula that help students confidently consider themselves as communicators with specific messages for specific purposes and specific audiences.

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Vincent Robles earned a BA in English and an MA in technical communication. Vince generally explores the use of language in users’ experiences of technology. This exploration means he uses linguistic and qualitative research approaches in contexts like user experience design, user documentation, and technical support. He also likes to study writers’ composing processes, which means he engages in professional communication pedagogy research as well, particularly the effects of case study approaches on students’ writing and editing decisions. Vince teaches courses in technical communication, proposal writing, and editing, and he is also an editor.When not teaching, researching, and editing, he spends time with his family, watches good television and film, listens to music, and puts grammatically parallel items in a series using the Oxford comma.

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jordanJordan Smith is a PhD student at Iowa State University co-majoring in Rhetoric and Professional Communication (RPC) and Applied Linguistics and Technology (ALT). He holds a BA in English language from Brigham Young University and an MPC (master of professional communication) from Weber State University. His research interests lie primarily in the area of English Language Studies, focusing specifically on English grammar, editing, discourse analysis, and information design.

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George Standifer is a graduate student in the Rhetoric and Professional Communication program. Before arriving at ISU, he taught at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. He has a M.A. in Rhetoric and Writing from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and a B.A. in History from Emory University. His research interests include visual rhetoric, rhetoric of sports, technical communication, scientific communication, medical communication, visual communication, visual literacy, and poetics.

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Bremen Vance is a graduate student in the Rhetoric and Professional Communication program. Before arriving at ISU, he taught at Metropolitan State University of Denver, the University of Northern Colorado, and Disney English in Nanjing China.He has a M.A. in English from the University of Northern Colorado and a B.A. in English from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Both of these degrees were focused on literature and helped shape his interest in the value of literacy.His research interests are driven by the empowering nature of language study and include rhetoric, composition, digital and multimodal literacy, and video games.Website: Bremenvance.com

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