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Jocelyn A. Wilson

Jocelyn A. Wilson

Educator, speaker, writer, style junkie, and hip-hop scholar Jocelyn Wilson, aka Dr. Joyce, was the 2016-2017 Fellow in the Digital Integrative Liberal Arts Center at Georgia Tech, and is an Assistant Professor in the Foundations of Education program in the Department of Learning Sciences and Technologies at Virginia Tech’s School of Education. She is also an affiliated faculty member in the Africana Studies Program, a Catalyst Fellow in the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology, a Hiphop Archive alumnus fellow at the W.E.B. Du Bois Research Institute at Harvard University, and the Founding Chair of the Hip Hop Theories, Pedagogies, and Praxis Special Interest Group for the American Educational Research Association.

As an ethnographic and qualitative researcher of the Hip Hop generation, Dr. Joyce studies the practices and traditions of cultures and communities, specifically from the perspective of an African American woman from the South who was raised after the Civil Rights movement and during the formative years of Hip Hop culture. For the last several years she has focused primarily on the intersections of Black cultural expressive traditions like Hip Hop with teaching and learning, critical media literacy, personal storytelling, and research methods. Because she is most excited about how these traditions mesh with digital technology, she has developed lines of research in virtual reality and digital ethnography.

Growing out of her interest in learning design, culture, media, and technology studies, Dr. Wilson has given a TEDx Talk on educational innovation called “The Outkast Imagination” and is finishing her first book on the subject. Additionally, there are several ways in which Dr. Wilson disseminates her scholarship – both on public and academic platforms. She started as a high school math teacher, using rap music to teach Algebra and her Hip Hop sensibilities to manage racially and economically-diverse learning environments. This research is published as book chapters, journal articles, through documentary film, and as online social commentary, which focuses on race, class, gender, and the sociocultural issues facing under-represented communities. She has contributed to The Root, and has spoken on numerous panels, including 2016 SXSW’s “What the South has to Say About the Digital.” She has contributed commentary to The Root, NewsOne, HuffPost Live, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and CNN. She has lectured at Georgia Tech, Kansas State, Morehouse College, Occidental College, Harvard, Yale, and other institutions. As part of the movement to usher Hip Hop culture into campus culture, Dr. Wilson is responsible for bringing artists such as Killer Mike, David Banner, TI, Lupe Fiasco, and DJ Drama to the Atlanta University Center to engage with students attending Morehouse, Spelman, and Clark-Atlanta University. She was featured on Black Entertainment Television’s My Mic Sounds Nice: The Truth About Women in Hip Hop (directed by Ava DuVernay) and VH1’s ATL: The Untold Story of Atlanta’s Rise in the Rap Game. Dr. Wilson is an Emmy-nominated film producer. Along with civil rights leader Andrew Young, she co-produced the Emmy-winning documentary film Walking With Guns, featuring rapper/actor Clifford “TI” Harris, Jr. and Grammy-winning rapper/activist Michael “Killer Mike” Render. The film highlights contemporary challenges of youth violence through the voice of hope and personal redemption. Her music reviews and artist features have been featured in pop culture publications including FADER, XXL, The Source, and wax poetics. Currently, she writes for The Bitter Southerner and ArtsATL.

Dr. Wilson received her B.Sc. in Mathematics, and her Ph.D. in Educational Foundations, and Qualitative Research certification from the University of Georgia. Her M.A. in Education is from Pepperdine University. She is a fashion magazine junkie, and enjoys having provocative conversations that connect people to ideas that elevate their social justice conscience. She stands on the shoulders of family, teachers, and mentors.


Sponsored by the Office of Diversity and the African/African American Studies Program.

Published on February 15, 2018

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