Kathleen McConnell

Kathleen McConnell

Kathleen F. McConnell
Professor of Rhetorical Studies 
Editor-in-Chief, Review of Communication

I teach communication theory and advocacy, and I love introducing people to new argumentation skills and strategies. In Advocating Heightened Education: Seeing and Inventing Academic Possibilities (Lexington Books, 2020), I challenge reform efforts aimed at detaching education from its campus infrastructure. I argue that higher education's bulky and incommensurable institutions serve a critical modality. Their diversity of form retains the possibility of divergent and transformative educational futures. I illustrate my argument with ethnographic and archival details from two unusual campuses, The Evergreen State College and California State University, Monterey Bay. 

My current research looks to the future of non-degree programs, 
including career technical and vocational education. I draw on feminist and anti-racist theories of design and affect to evaluate different ways of combining materials training with communication and civic education. 

In 2021, the City Innovate STIR Labs program paired me with the City of Detroit Office of Talent Development and Performance Management to design a career advancement program for city employees.

Ph.D., Rhetoric and Public Culture, Indiana University
M.A., Popular Culture, Bowling Green State University
B.A., The Evergreen State College 


Preferred: kathleen.mcconnell@sjsu.edu


Preferred: (408) 924-5374