As a scholar of rhetoric and technology, I organize my teaching around training in one of the central tenets of the rhetorical tradition: judgment. Judgment is how we reconcile principles and particulars; it is how we respond to new situations, discern how to live up to our ideals, or know when we should change our convictions. Much of contemporary techno-society separates judgment from individuals, offloading it onto automatic processes, technologies or professionals. I select case studies, design interactive activities, and facilitate discussions that challenge my students to make judgements in their roles as consumers, citizens, and community members.

Check out some of my courses below:

Communication and Social Change

Whether in the form of a strike, a speech, or a sit-in, people use a wide variety of communication strategies when confronting the established social order. This course will examine the communication practices of social movements: the groups of people organized around advancing a change in public ideas and actions. We will examine major social…

Rhetoric and Technology

The English word “technology” comes from two Greek concepts that have been central to the rhetorical tradition: techne and logos. Techne is often translated as “craft” or “art,” encompassing a broader set of principles and practices of creating objects, relationships, and meanings. Logos may be translated as “logic,” or “reasoning,” and refers to the human…

Better Living Through Rhetoric

Is it sometimes okay to use harsh language in an argument? How can I speak to someone with a completely different worldview from mine? When is the right time to bring up that tricky subject with my significant other? These are questions that the study of rhetoric can help you answer! Rhetoric focuses on the…

Technology and Society

It can be easy to think that technology is just impersonal nuts and bolts or ones and zeroes—that it is disconnected from the “real” world of human beings. But this class will explore the ways that our technologies—from bicycles to highways to computers—are intimately connected to human dynamics and social systems. Scholars in a variety…

Teaching Awards

Nominee, Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, Northeastern University College of Arts, Media, and Design, Fall 2021

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching by a Graduate Teaching Assistant, 2020-2021

Teacher Ranked as “Excellent” (top 30% of instructors at University of Illinois): Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2016-Spring 2019 (all semesters)

Teacher Ranked as “Outstanding (top 10% of instructors at University of Illinois): Spring 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018

University of Illinois Department of Communication Charles and Ruth Bowman Award for Graduate Teaching and Research

Sample of Student Feedback

“She is inquisitive, kind, willing to address contrasting options and truly interested in the inquiries of her students. She is a model educator whose main desire is expanding her student’s professional curiosity.”

“Throughout the semester, some of the topics we discussed in class were highly political and sensitive, though Katie provided an environment in which as a student of color, I felt comfortable to speak on my ideas and participate in class discussion.”

“She was passionate about the material … and that passion trickled through to me and instilled a passion in myself for the same subjects. In my undergrad tenure at [the University of Illinois], only a few professors were ever able to excite me about their material as much as she was.”

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