Examining the Literacy Practices of Electrical Engineers: A Comparative Case Study

Document Type

Conference Paper

Journal/Book Title/Conference

2019 American Education Research Association (AERA) Annual Meeting


American Education Research Association (AERA)


Toronto, Canada

Publication Date


Award Number

NSF, Division of Engineering Education and Centers (EEC) 1664228


NSF, Division of Engineering Education and Centers (EEC)


Disciplinary literacy instruction is an approach to teaching students how to interpret, evaluate, and generate discipline-specific texts. This type of instruction teaches students authentic strategies to master content in ways that reflect those used by professionals. This paper describes a comparative case study of the literacy practices of two electrical engineers using situated, multi-site ethnographic data. This study investigates how these electrical engineers read, wrote, and evaluated different textual genres in their workplace. The literacy practices obtained from these engineers will inform the development of a model of disciplinary literacy in electrical engineering that will be used to teach students how to generate and interpret texts using discipline-specific frameworks, thus preparing to them to enter the electrical engineering workforce.