Doctor of Philosophy in English, August 2012

University of California, Riverside

Areas: Cultural Studies, Digital Media, Game Studies, and Minority Discourse

Dissertation Committee: James Tobias (chair), Toby Miller,  Lisa Nakamura and Keith Harris.

Dissertation Title: Gamic Race: Logics of Difference in Videogame Culture

Master of Arts in English, 2007

University of California, Riverside

Examiners: Toby Miller and Vorris Nunley

Bachelor of Arts in English, 2003

Michigan State University

Minors: Anthropology and History

Specialization: Film





Peer Reviewed Articles

“Beyond Badges & Points: Gameful Assessment Systems for Engagement in Formal Education,” with Barry Fishman, Sebastian Deterding, Kate Fanelli, Lucien Vattel, Katerina Schenke, Lee Sheldon, Clayton Ewing, Caitlin Holman, and Stephen Ewing. In Symposium Games+Learning+Society Conference 9.0., University of Wisconsin- Madison, Madison, WI. 2013.

“What Trolls Can Teach Us About Race.” Fibreculture Special Issue: Politics of Trolling and the Negative Spaces of the Internet, Issue 22. Eds. Jason Wilson, Christian McCrea, and Glen Fuller. 2013.

“Blackless Fantasy: The Disappearance of Race in MMORPGs.” Games and Culture, 4.1 (2009): 3-26.

Book Chapters

“’Turn off the game console right now!’: War, Subjectivity, and Control in Metal Gear Solid 2.”Joystick Soldiers: The Politics of Play in Military Video Games. Eds. Nina Huntemann and Matthew Payne. Routledge, 2009.

“Play-Fighting: Understanding Violence in the Grand Theft Auto Series.” The Meaning and Culture of Grand Theft Auto: Critical Essays. Ed. Nate Garrelts. Jefferson, NC: McFarland Press, 2006.


Tactical Media by Rita Raley for Digital Culture & Education. December 2009.

Cheating: Gaining Advantage in Videogames by Mia Consalvo for the Resource Center for Cyberculture Studies. July 2009.

Web Contributions

Regular Contributor, KQED’s MindShift. 2013-Present.

Regular Contributor, Common Sense Education’s blog. 2013-Present.

“Tech is Tech, but Teachers Are Artists.” Joan Goanz Cooney Center Blog. February 8, 2016.

“So Far Away.” Unwinnable. November 6, 2012.

“Kick-Ass and the Ethics of Gameplay.” Kotaku. April 28, 2010.

“Lrn2Play Noob: Progressive Masculinity in Games.” Media Res: A Media Commons Project. Sep. 27, 2007.

Dictionary and Encyclopedia Entries

“Racism, Sexism, and Homophobia in Online Games” for The International Encyclopedia of Digital Communication: Gaming Volume. Eds. Aphra Kerr and James Ivory, Hoboken, NJ: Wiley Blackwell, 2015.


Avalos, George. “Parents’ guide to ‘Minecraft,’ intermediate level: Don’t fight the obsession.” San Jose Mercury News. January 30, 2015.

Darvasi, Paul. “How to Transform The Odyssey into an Epic Game in Alternate Reality.” MindShift. October 13, 2014.

Nealon, Sean. “Education Notebook.” The Press-Enterprise. September, 6, 2009.

Tynan, Dan. “A Parent’s Guide to Minecraft: 5 Reasons to Stop Worrying and Learn to Love the Cubes.” Yahoo Tech. April 20, 2014.





“Reframing Art, Learning, and Technology” at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco School Docent Symposium 2014, San Francisco, CA; October 10, 2014.

Invited Lectures

“Efficacy Platforms Review” at the Education Innovation Clusters Convening, Chicago, IL; August 11, 2015.

“Beyond Academia” workshop for the Graduate Student Resource Center at the University of California, Riverside, Riverside, CA; February 10, 2014.

“Website Development to Showcase Scholarship” workshop offered at the University of California, Riverside Graduate Student Mentoring Program, Riverside, CA; May 6, 2011.

“Analyzing Race in Video Games” for Prof. James Tobias’ MCS 146E: Special Topics in Technoculture and Digital Media course, University of California, Riverside; October 17, 2008.

Conference Presentations

“The Savvy Teacher’s Guide to Identifying Worthwhile, Effective Digital Pilot Projects” at ISTE 2015, Philadelphia, PA; July 1, 2015 with Muhammed Chaudry, Chris Liang-Vergara.

“Choosing the Best Apps, Games, and Websites for Learning” at Teaching & Learning 2014, Washington DC; March 14, 2014 with Linda Burch, Michael Levine, Jonathan Fichter, and Elliot Levinson.

“The Killer of Sheep of Videogames” at Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference, Chicago, IL; March 9, 2012.

“Marginal Digital Knowledges: A Workshop on Technology, Transformation, and Resistance” workshop at American Studies Association Conference, San Juan, Puerto Rico; November 17, 2012 with Alexis Lothian, Amanda Phillips, Fiona Barnett, Moya Bailey, and Simone Browne.

“Transformative Mediations? Ethnic and Queer Studies and the Politics of the Digital” roundtable at American Studies Association Conference, Baltimore, MD; October 21, 2011 with Anne Cong-Huyen, Anna Everett, Melanie Kohnen, Alexis Lothian, Amanda Phillips, and Marta S. Rivera Monclova.

“Racial Mapping in Videogames” Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference, New Orleans, LA; March 13, 2011.

“Videogames as Critical Race Pedagogy” Digital Media and Learning Conference, Long Beach, CA; March 3, 2011.

THATCamp SoCal participant, Orange, CA; forthcoming January 11-12, 2011.

“Towards a History of Race in Videogames” (dis)junctions Conference, Riverside, CA; April 9, 2010.

“Towards a History of Race in Videogames” Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference, Los Angeles, CA;  March 21, 2010. Accepted but did not present.

“Neoliberalism, Multiculturalism, and the Means of Digital Humanities Production” roundtable at American Studies Association, Washington D.C.; November 8, 2009 with Anna Everett, Debora Kimmey, Lisa Nakamura, Tara McPherson, and Kara Thompson.

“The Game Looks Back Into You: Rhetorics of Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Authoring the Virtual Self” with Lee Sherlock at Games, Learning, and Society 5.0, Madison, WI; June 11, 2009.

“Performative Play: Revising the Politics of Virtual Worlds” at Modern Lanuage Association, San Francisco, CA; December 27, 2008.

“Performative Play” at UCIRA State of the Arts, Riverside, CA; November 7, 2008.

“Machinima Masculinities” at New Worlds in Digital Animation panel for the Mellon Workshop on Affect, Technics, and Ethics, Riverside, CA; April 10, 2008.

“Machinima Masculinities: Video Game Video, Space, and Masculine Performance” at Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference, Philadelphia, PA; March 7, 2008.

“Racecraft: Logics of Race in Video Game Character Creation” at (dis)junctions, Riverside, CA; April 7, 2007.

“Blackless Fantasy: The Disappearance of Race in MMORPGs” at the International Digital Media and Arts Association Conference, San Diego, CA; November 9-11, 2006.

“Carvings and Flesh-Machine Scarring: Reading the Evolution of the Othered Body-Text” at the Popular Culture Association in the South Conference, Jacksonville, FL; October 6-8, 2005.

Organized Panels

“Models of Game Based Learning in School with Disadvantaged Student Communities” at Digital Media and Learning Conference, Los Angeles, CA; June 11, 2015.

“‘Doing Good’ Game Design” at Digital Media and Learning Conference, Boston, MA; March 8, 2014.

“Race and Video Games” panel at (dis)junctions, Riverside, CA; April 7, 2007.


“Using At-Home Games for In-School Benefits” at Games, Learning, and Society 11, Madison, WI; July 7, 2015.




Common Sense Values Award, Dare to Be Great. August 2016.

Games Journalism Prize Nomination. 2012.

Annette K. Baxter Travel Grant for American Studies Association Conference. October 2011.

Digital Media and Learning Research Associates Summer Institute Fellowship. August 2011.

University of California Dissertation Year Fellowship. Spring 2011.

University of California Graduate Humanities Fellowship. Winter 2011.

First Place, English Department Graduate Student Essay Contest,  2008-2009.

Graduate Student Association Travel Grant for Games, Learning, and Society Conference, June 2009.

Graduate Student Association Travel Grant for Modern Language Association Conference, December 2008.

Kristine M. Scarano Scholarship, 2008-2009.

Teaching Assistantship, 2006-2010.

University of California Humanities Research Institute (UCHRI) Partial Scholarship.

Certificate for attending the August 2006 UCHRI Seminar in Experimental Critical Theory, Technospheres: Futures of Thinking.

Graduate Assistantship, Winter Quarter 2006.

University of California, Riverside Graduate Division Fellowship, 2005-2006.

Dean’s List (3.5+ GPA), 2001-2003.




Director, Education Editorial Strategy, Common Sense Education. Manage editorial team. Own content strategy for all editorialized content (reviews, Top Picks, What’s New pages, standards explorers, Teaching Strategies, and any future content types). Perform regular content inventories and audits, set editorial yearly goals, set and track metrics, conceptualize and test new content types (with technical assistance of product), analyze test data and make recommendations to leadership, conduct user research as necessary. Track and report editorial KPIs. Primary point-of-contact and key stakeholder for all product development as it relates to editorial content types. Editor in charge of Teacher Tools, Arts.

Senior Manager, Education Content, Common Sense Education. Oversee games content coverage, strategy, and editing on Graphite.org. Develop strategic plans and manage workflow for editorial processes, perform analysis and prepare reports on learning ratings and reviews. Collaborate with product and engineering to strategize and implement new site designs and features. Serve as point person for site troubleshooting. Attend and present at conferences, and produce written intellectual work to promote progressive educational practices. Conceptualize and lead professional development and produce documentation and guidelines. Act as main curator for Graphite homepage.

Research Lead, GameDesk. Provided strategy and oversight for a range of research projects into a new model for learning and associated hands-on, student-driven, and playful curriculum. Created games and modules for use at the PlayMaker School within New Roads School in Los Angeles. Contributed to research, publications, and conference presentations of GameDesk activities. Participated in grant strategy, grant writing, and support for grants ranging from $100,000 to $3.8 million. Helped with planning and shaping GameDesk infrastructure including the creation of a community-based learning and research center, web-based portal for educational technology and 21st century education, and PlayMaker School. Assisted with overall communication strategy and produced content for use in press and marketing material, grants, presentations, and research dissemination. Vetted and curated content for the GameDesk web portal.

Research and Project Management Intern, GameDesk. Researched developments in educational technology, play, and videogames for use in briefings, game development, funding development, and strategic planning. Wrote grant proposals for 21st Century Learning Portal. Contributed research and writing for press releases and marketing efforts for Mathmaker educational software and curriculum. January 2012-Present.

Technical Writer-Editor, U.S. Army Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM). Managed all aspects of the development and sustainment of publications for the M1 Abrams tank. Ensured manuals and other technical documentation were produced to specification. 2003-2005.




Teaching Assistant, University of California, Riverside. 2006-2012.

Adjunct Faculty, San Bernardino Valley College. 2008-2012.

Associate Faculty, Mt. San Jacinto College. Fall 2008.

Reviewer, Games and Culture, 2012-Present.

Reviewer, New Review of Hypermedia and Multimedia, 2012.

Reviewer, Foundations of Digital Games conference, 2012.

Reviewer, Fibreculture. 2009.

Reviewer, Loading…: Journal of the Canadian Game Studies Association. 2007.

Graduate Student Coordinator, Mellon Workshop on Affect, Technics, and Ethics. 2007-2009.

CIN|tax Chairman, University of California, Riverside. Organized and directed the seventh annual CIN|tax Film Forum. 2009.

CIN|tax Committee, University of California, Riverside. Member of the committee to organize the fifth and sixth annual CIN|tax Film Forums. 2007-2008.

Graduate Readership, University of California, Riverside. Assisted the course instructor with grading and student evaluation. Winter 2006.

Co-Editor, The Means. Creator and co-editor of The Means, a semi-annual print journal publishing fiction, non-fiction, essays, interviews, and artwork.  The Means also expanded its web presence to contain a weekly blog and podcast. 2004-2008.

Contributor, Gameology.org. Regular contributor to this popular academic website and blog.

Editorial Intern, Fourth Genre. Reviewed and managed manuscripts for this nationally circulated and award winning journal of creative nonfiction. Oversaw development of the journal’s website. Maintained correspondence with authors and editorial board. 2002-2003.