Dr. Jennifer McCormick

Jennifer McCormick
Charter College of Education
Department of Curriculum & Instruction
Office Location: KH 2027
Email: jmccorm3@exchange.calstatela.edu


Jennifer McCormick is an Associate Professor in the Division of Curriculum and Instruction at the California State University, Los Angeles. She joined the faculty in Fall, 2008. Dr. McCormick has expertise in teaching and scholarship focused on language, literacy and teacher education. She has worked to develop school-university-community partnerships around parent advocacy and adolescent literacy, forging alliances with 826 LA, the Alliance for a Better Community, Families in Schools and BRESEE. She and Sara Ozuna, a CSULA graduate student, recently completed a project that targeted an increase in parent advocacy. This work has subsequently been published and distributed at national conferences. Dr. McCormick and Dr. Sonnenschein (English) were awarded a teacher training grant from Center for Advancement of Reading (CAR) to implement the Reading Institute for Academic Preparation (RIAP) at CSULA. RIAP integrates teacher professional development, expository curriculum and content-area reading strategies. The initiative is part of the Early Assessment Program at the California State University. McCormick and Sonnenschein have continued this focus on teacher training through their work on an i3 grant that supports the implementation of the Expository Reading and Writing Course across the state.


Dr. McCormick's teaches courses related to the acquisition and development of literacy at the secondary level.


During the 2014-2015 school year,  McCormick collaborated with Chris Endy, Department of History at CSULA , Ben De Leon, Mendez High School, and 826LA  on the 2015 Young Author’s Book Project.  As part of the project, high school students analyzed primary documents related to the Mendez case, studied the struggles waged in the 40s for Latino political representation and discussed youth activism through the lens of the 1968 East L.A. Walkouts.  Students subsequently wrote about their experiences with racial segregation and interviewed local activists and scholars. Their work was compiled and published as a book that has since been recognized by civil rights advocates and the nation’s current poet laureate.

The 2015 Young Author’s Book Project, “We Are Alive When We Speak for Justice,” was  reviewed in the Los Angeles Review of Books in June, 2015:


Dr. McCormick is the  current CSULA Liaison to the Marc and Eva Stern Math and Science School. She also implemented  the Reading Institute for Academic Preparation (RIAP), professional development for subject area teachers,  at CSULA.  Over a thirteen month period (January 2011—February 2012),  she trained eighteen teachers from three distinct school districts: Baldwin Park, Los Angeles and Pasadena.


McCormick's scholarship has two major strands: literacy and learning at the secondary level and educational opportunity. In January 2012, Dr. McCormick was awarded a grant through the Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity Program to continue research related to Mendez v. Westminster, legislation that ended the legal segregation of Latinos in the schools of California and laid the groundwork for Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka. As part of this project, she guided a team that collected 147 legal documents from local and national archives and transcribed hours of taped interviews. Moved by her students' experiences at CSULA, due to the constraints on federal grants and loans, she hopes to re-interpret the promise of Mendez by emphasizing the role of higher public education in achieving or abridging social mobility.

 Selected Publications


Writing in the Asylum: Student Poets in City Schools. (2004) New York:  Teachers College Press.

Refereed Journal Articles

  • McCormick, J. Hafner, A. & Saint-Germain, M. (2013). “From High School to College: Teachers and Students Assess the Impact of an Expository Course on College Readiness,” Journal of Educational Research and Practice, 3(1) 30-49.
  • McCormick, J. and Ozuna, S. ( 2012). “Community Partnerships: Working Across Institutions to Support Parent Advocacy and Education.”  2012 Yearbook of Urban Learning Teaching and Research, 26-33.
  • McCormick, Jennifer.  (2011). “Transmediation in the Language Arts Classroom: Creating Contexts for Analysis and Ambiguity.” Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 54(8) 579-587.
  • McCormick, Jennifer. (2010). Reading Langston Hughes. California English,15 (5) 20-24.
  • Hafner, A., Joseph, R., & McCormick, J. (2010). “College readiness for all:  Assessing the impact of English professional development on teaching practice and student learning.”  Journal of Urban Learning, Teaching and Research,  2 (3) 23-45.
  • McCormick, Jennifer and César J. Ayala. (2007). "Felícita “La Prieta” Méndez (1916–1998) and the end of Latino school segregation in California." Centro: Journal of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies, 19(2) (Fall): 12-35.
  • McCormick, Jennifer. (2003). "Drag me to the asylum: Disguising and asserting identities in an urban school." The Urban Review, 35(2).
  • McCormick, Jennifer.  (2002). “The Table in the Dessert: Calling up images through surrealist poetry.” Journal of Curriculum Theorizing, 18 (1).


Ph.D. English Education May, 1999

  • New York University
    New York, New York