Catherine Burwell

Catherine Burwell

Pronouns: she/her/hers


Associate Professor

Werklund School of Education, Specialization, Curriculum and Learning

Contact information

Phone number

Office: 403.220.5976


Office: EDT344

For media enquiries, contact

Clayton MacGillivray
Content and Media Specialist

Twitter: @UCalgaryEduc


Educational Background

PhD Sociology and Equity Studies in Education, University of Toronto,

MA Literature and Gender Studies, University of York (UK),

MEd Curriculum, Teaching and Learning, University of Toronto,

BEd Secondary English Language Arts, University of Toronto,

BA English Literature, McGill University,


Catherine Burwell's research and teaching are situated in the areas of literacy, language arts, media education and digital culture. Before joining the Werklund School of Education in 2011, Catherine worked as a secondary school English and Media Studies teacher with the Toronto District School Board for more than 10 years.


Areas of Research

Scholarly Activity

Catherine Burwell’s interdisciplinary research explores the pedagogical implications of youth digital culture. Her most recent work examines young people’s experiences evaluating, discussing and sharing media related to the Covid-19 pandemic. Catherine is also interested in emerging conceptualizations of media education and digital literacy. Her work has been published in education, cultural studies and communication journals. Catherine currently serves as the Vice President of the Association for Research in Cultures of Young People (ARCYP).

  • English language arts
  • Critical media education
  • Digital literacies
  • Multimodal literacies
  • Social justice in digital spaces
  • Digital visual culture
  • Diversity and equity in secondary schools
  • Interdisciplinary learning
  • Curriculum and pedagogy
  • Feminist pedagogy


Course number Course title Semester
EDUC 460 Secondary English Language Arts Specialization 2022
EDUC 450 Diversity in Learning 2022
EDUC 785 Inquiry through the Humanities 2021


Current Funded Research:
  • Canadian and American Youth Perspectives on Media Related to Covid-19. (Principal Investigator). Funded by the Spencer Foundation. 2020-2022.

Past Funded Research:
  • Critical Media Literacy in a Post-truth Era (Principal Investigator). Funded by Alberta Advisory Committee for Educational Studies.  2018 - 2020.
  • Youth, Bytes, Copyright: Investigating Young Canadians’ Encounters with Digital Copyright (Principal Investigator). Funded by SSHRC Insight Development Grant.  2014 - 2017.


  • University of Calgary Students' Union Teaching Excellence Award, 2018
  • University of Calgary Teaching Excellence Award, 2017
  • University of Calgary Students' Union Teaching Excellence Award (Honourable Mention), 2017
  • Werklund School of Education Leadership in Education Award, 2017
  • Werklund School of Education Teaching Excellence Award, 2014