Heather Falconer

Assistant Professor of Professional and Technical Writing
Neville Hall
University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469

Office Hours – by appointment

As a Writing Studies scholar, I am deeply committed to work and inquiry that serves a larger purpose. Primarily, this larger purpose has been educational and disciplinary reform as it relates to inequity. My research focuses on the intersections of culture, discipline, and pedagogy, with a special emphasis on discursive identity development and disciplinary enculturation.

My current project involves participatory action research with neurodivergent students to explore their experience learning college-level reading and writing skills. I am also currently revising a monograph exploring the experiences of underrepresented minorities (women and BIPOC individuals) learning to read, write, and think as members of the STEM community and the roles reading, writing, speaking, and listening for academic purposes play in that process.

I earned my doctorate at Northeastern University, where I taught First-Year Writing and advanced courses in disciplinary writing (e.g., science). I also hold a Master’s of Letters (MLitt) from the University of Glasgow and a Master’s of Fine Arts (MFA) from Emerson College. In addition to teaching, I am an Editor with the Perspectives on Writing book series, Vice-Chair for the North East Writing Across the Curriculum Consortium, Co-chair of the Research and Publications Committee of the Association for Writing Across the Curriculum, and serve on multiple editorial boards.

Recent Publications

Falconer, H.M. (Forthcoming) Challenges and considerations in longitudinal research. In Bahl, E.K., Chad Iwertz Duffy, and Christa Teston, Methods for emerging researchers in rhetoric and composition.

Falconer, H.M. (Fall 2022). Playing the expectation game: Negotiating disciplinary discourse in undergraduate research. In Ritter, K., Beyond fitting in: Rethinking First-Gen writing and literacy education, Modern Language Association.

Basgier, C., Cox, M., Falconer, H.M., Galin, J., Harahap, A., Hendrickson, B., Melzer, D., Palmquist, M., & Sherriff, S. (2020). The formation of a professional organization for writing across the curriculum. In Bartlett, L.E., Tarabochia, S., and Olinger, A. IWAC 25th Anniversary Edited Collection, The WAC Clearinghouse, Perspectives on Writing series.

Greer, J., Grobman, L., & Falconer, H.M. (2020). Contributing to knowledge: A defining characteristic of undergraduate research, a critical opportunity to empower students. In Dellacarpini, D., Fishman, J., & Greer, J., The Naylor Report on Undergraduate Research in Writing Studies.

Falconer, H.M. (2019). Mentored writing at a Hispanic-serving institution: Improving student facility with scientific discourse, in Baca, I., Hinojosa, Y.I., & Murphy, S.W., Bordered Writers: Latinx Identities and Literacy Practices at Hispanic Serving Institutions, State University of New York Press.

Falconer, H.M. (2019). “I think when I speak, I don’t sound like that”: The influence on social positioning on rhetorical skill development in science. Written Communication, 36(1), 9-37. Listen to my interview with Editor Chad Wickman on this article.

Falconer, H.M. (2017). Assessing writing in undergraduate biology coursework: A review of the literature on practices and criteria. The WAC Journal, 28, 123-138.

Carpi, A., Ronan, D.M., Falconer, H.M., & Lents, N.H. (2017). Cultivating minority scientists: Undergraduate research increases self-efficacy and career ambitions for underrepresented students in STEM. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 54(2), 169-194. Published online before print August 5, 2016. doi: 10.1002/tea.21341


Graduate Faculty Spotlight