Cathy Fleischer

A photo of Cathy Fleischer


English Language and Literature

603A Pray-Harrold


[email protected]


  • Ph.D., University of Michigan
  • M.Ed., University of Virginia
  • BA, Connecticut College

Interests and Expertise

Since 1978, I have had the opportunity to teach at the high school, community college and university level. In 1990, I began teaching here at EMU, where I teach courses in English education and literacy, work with undergraduate and graduate students and co-direct the Eastern Michigan University Writing Project.

Most recently, I've focused my research in the following areas:

  • Teacher-research: how classroom teachers might reflect in a systematic and careful way.
  • Teacher advocacy: how teachers can work with networks of parents and other community members to help others understand effective classroom practices.
  • Adolescent literacy: how we can help teachers understand changing definitions of literacy and prepare teens in smart and thoughtful ways for the reading and writing challenges of the 21st century.
  • Disciplinary literacy: how practitioners of particular disciplines read, write, talk and think, and how that knowledge can help students be successful in college and beyond.

In the last few years, I've taken on a new role: special editor for the National Council of Teachers of English, where I've developed the Principles in Practice Imprint, designed to help teachers connect some of NCTE research-based policies with classroom practice.


  • Writing for writing teachers
  • Literacy and written literacy instruction
  • Methods of teaching secondary English
  • Research in written communication
  • Issues in the teaching of writing
  • Issues in English studies for teachers

Publications and Presentations

  • Everyday Advocacy: Teachers Who Change the Literacy Narrative. Norton, 2020.
  • Everyday Advocacy: Changing the Narrative About Literacy Education (website)
  • Becoming a Writing Researcher, 2nd Edition. (with Ann Blakeslee).  Routledge Taylor and Francis Group,  2019.
  • "Finding the 'Brave Spaces': Reclaiming Teacher Professionalism." Reform and Literacy Education: History, Effects, Advocacy. Ed. Sarah Hochstetler. Routledge Taylor and Francis Group, 2018/
  • "Everyday Advocacy: The New Professionalism for Teachers." Voices from the Middle, September 2016.
  • "Whose Story Is It? Teacher Research, Agency, and Advocacy." Structural Kindness: Essays on Literacy Education in Honor of Kent D. Williamson. Eds. Patricia Stock and Darren Cambridge. Urbana, IL: NCTE, 2015.
  • "English Educators as Change Agents: How to Do Change Differently in a Complex World," English in a Globalized World: International Perspectives on the Teaching of English. Eds. Cal Durant, Andy Goodwyn and Louann Reid. Routledge Taylor and Francis Group, 2013.
  • "Collaboration: Talk. Trust. Write" (with Mark Lechter, Kristen Turner, Meredith Donovan, Leah Zuidema, Jim Frederickson, Sarah Andrew-Vaughan, Nicole Sieben and Laraine Wallowitz). Teaching/Writing: The Journal of Writing Teacher Education 2 (2013). Online.
  • "A Case for Collaboration: Intertwined Roots, Interwoven Futures," Composition's Roots in English Education. Ed. Patricia Lambert Stock. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2011.
  • Reading and Writing and Teens: A Parent's Guide to Adolescent Literacy. Urbana, IL: National Council of Teachers of English, 2010.
  • Writing Outside Your Comfort Zone: The Unfamiliar Genre Project(with Sarah Andrew-Vaughan), Portsmouth, NH:Heinemann, 2009.
  • "Creating the Framework for Success in Postsecondary Writing" (with Peggy O'Neill, Linda Adler-Kassner and Anne-Marie Hall). College English, July, 2012.
  • "Inviting Parents In: Expanding Our Community Base to Support Writing" (with Kim Pavlock). English Journal, March 2012.
  • Becoming a Writing Researcher (with Ann Blakeslee). New York: Ehrlbaum Press, 2007.
  • "Researching Writing: The Unfamiliar Genre Project," (with Sarah Andrew-Vaughan). English Journal. March, 2006.