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Simmons, Joan, Ph.D.

Associate Professor


Doctor of Philosophy  Indiana University, 1995

Office: Nursing Education 208

Telephone: (920) 424-4444


Areas of Expertise

  • Secondary Reading
  • Content Area Reading

    Brief Bio

    I can proudly say that I have been a teacher since 1970. My public school teaching experience began and ended twenty-one years later in a middle school in southern Indiana. After finishing my coursework for a Ph.D. in Bloomington, Indiana, I commuted to the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay where I was the only Reading professor on staff. That experience allowed me to get out of my comfort zone of middle school reading and teach all courses that were offered by UWGB in Reading as well as the Middle School course. This allowed me to experience the entire gamut of reading instruction from early literacy through high school. I also ran the Middle Level Seminar for educators across the state that participated in a seminar involving noted middle school researchers from around the nation. Since coming to the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, I have concentrated on teaching secondary and content literacy to graduate and undergraduate students. In 2003, I became Chair and Graduate Coordinator of the Reading Education Department, which allowed me to grow in the areas of administration and supervision.

    My scholarship involves looking at professionals as change agents, integrating the curriculum through thematic themes and strategies and using test data to make informed decisions. I have eighteen peer reviewed and invited publications and reviews. I work closely with the West Bend Reading Professionals on a two-year staff development and grant initiative. I have been fortunate to be able to present my work at four international, eleven national and twenty-two state conferences. Additionally, I am a member of many national and regional professional organizations. I am currently focusing on helping teachers become change agents and reflective professionals in the field and am a Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction Professional Development Plan higher education verifier.

    Date of First Employment at UW Oshkosh: 1997
    Years of P-12 Experience: 21 year

    Classes Typically Taught

    • Secondary Reading Methods
    • Literacy and Language in the Content Areas
    • Practicum in Reading
    • Administration/Supervision of Reading
    • Issues in Reading
    • Readers/Writers Workshop
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