Wayne State University

Aim Higher

Faculty & Staff

Ebony Elizabeth Thomas Ph.D.

Assistant Professor - Reading, Language, and Literature
eethomas@wayne.edu
Office Location & Hours
275 College of Education
(313) 577-1710

Office Hours:  Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2-4 pm

Other times available via appointment; please send an email or leave a phone message.

 

Responsibilities

Dr. Thomas researches, publishes, and teaches courses in adolescent literacy and English Education.  Past courses include:

EED 5200 - Methods of Teaching English

EED 6210 - Language, Literacy, and Learning

EED 6310 - Young Adult Literature

RLL 7600 - Current Issues in Literacy Research (Motivating Adolescent Male Readers)

Homepage URL
Degrees and Certifications

Ph.D.  University of Michigan, 2010 - Joint Program in English and Education (Rackham)

M.A.   Wayne State University, 2004 - English, 19th Century British and American Literatures

B.A.    Florida A&M University, 1999 -  English Education 

Michigan Provisional Certification, English Language Arts, Gr. 7-12 (BA), 2000.

Michigan Professional Certification, English Language Arts, Gr. 6-12 (BA), 2006.

Academic Interests
  • English Language Arts teacher education and professional development
  • Children's and adolescent literatures and literacies
  • African American literatures and cultures
  • Educational linguistics; language learning in school and out-of-school settings
  • Multicultural education for social justice and cultural change
Area of Expertise
  • English education (e.g. the teaching of American English literacies, literatures, composition, language, English teaching methods)
  • Children's and adolescent literatures and textual production
  • Discourse analysis & interactional ethnography
  • Systemic functional linguistics
  • Qualitative research methods
  • Classroom interaction research

 

Research Interests

Dr. Thomas' current research projects and publications in progress include the following:

  • Exploring discourse conflicts in 21st century schooling and society
  • Teaching the logic of academic language and critical literacies, Gr. 6-12
  • Reading African American literatures, lives, and cultures in the Obama era and beyond
  • Analyzing textual and other semiotic representations of older children and teens in 21st century urban contexts

Community Engagement Activities

Dr. Thomas is a fourth-generation Detroiter and is a proud supporter of her city.  Her civic activities include the following:

  • Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. - Detroit Alumnae Chapter
  • Preservation Wayne - Cultural Center Tour Shepherd
  • Friends of the Detroit Public Library
  • Member of the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History
  • Member of the Detroit Institute of Arts
Awards and Honors
2012
National Council of Teachers of English Promising Researcher Award - Honorable Mention
2011
Wayne State University Humanities Center Faculty Fellow
Recent Presentations
Dilemmatic Whiteness: The Challenges of Negotiating Teacher-Student Solidarity Across Hyperdiverse School Contexts
Thomas, E.E. (April 2011) American Educational Research Association - New Orleans, LA
Every Ghetto, Every City: Place and Identity in Urban Young Adult Literature
Thomas, E.E. (November 2011) National Council of Teachers of English - Chicago, IL
Focusing on Language and Meaning in Teachers’ Professional Development
Schleppegrell, M., Thomas, E.E., & Moore, J. (November 2011) National Council of Teachers of English - Chicago, IL
"Is Obama Black? Is He White?" Negotiating Solidarity and Identity Through Discourse in a Tenth Grade English Class
Thomas, E.E. (March 2010) American Association for Applied Linguistics - Atlanta, GA
Teacher Talk About Conflict at a Multicultural High School: The Pinnacle Classroom Discourse Study Group
Thomas, E.E. & Daniel, A. (November 2010) National Council of Teachers of English - Orlando, FL
Scattering Light on 21st Century Urban Landscapes: Thinking, Seeing, and Imagining Young Adult Literature in the City
Thomas, E.E. & Flake, S. (November 2009) ALAN Workshop, National Council of Teachers of English - Philadelphia, PA
Dilemmas of Ideology, Context, and Silenced Dialogues: The Professional Literacies of an African American Male English Teacher
Thomas, E.E. (November 2009) Cultivating New Voices Fellows Poster Session, National Council of Teachers of English - Philadelphia, PA
Once and Future Courageous Conversations: Reading the African American Experience in the Obama Era
Thomas, E.E. & Gray, D. (November 2009) National Council of Teachers of English - Philadelphia, PA
Reading the African American Experience in the Obama Era: Practical Ideas for Learning, Teaching and Activism
Thomas, E.E. (October 2009) National Association for Multicultural Education International Conference - Denver, CO
Teacher Inquiry Into Conflict at a Multicultural High School: Reflection, Praxis, and Social Change
Thomas, E.E. (April 2009) American Educational Research Association - San Diego, CA
A Disciplined Conversation: The Language of Inquiry in Science, Social Studies, and English Education
Rex, L.A., Thomas, E.E., Drago, K., & Levy, B. (April 2009) American Educational Research Association - San Diego, CA
Making the Shift for Reluctant Students: Using Popular Culture and New Media to Teach Persuasive Writing
Rex, L.A. & Thomas, E.E. (November 2008) National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention - San Antonio, TX
Recent Publications
The Next Chapter of Our Story: Rethinking African American Metanarratives in Schooling and Society
Thomas, E.E. (March 2012) Reading African American Experiences in the Obama Era: Theory, Advocacy, Activism
African American Children’s Literature: Liminal Terrains and Strategies for Selfhood
Thomas, E.E. (July 2012) Diversity in Youth Literature: Opening Doors Through Reading
Thomas, E.E. (January 2011) The ALAN Review 38(2) 13-22
Thomas, E.E., Sassi, K. (July 2011) English Journal 100(6) 47-53
Rex, L.A., Thomas, E.E. & Engel, S. (July 2010) English Journal 99(6) 56-61
Thomas, E.E. (2008) Sankofa: A Journal of African Children’s and Young Adult Literature 7 50-57
Sassi, K. & Thomas, E.E. (July 2008) English Journal 97(6) 25-31