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INSPIRING EDUCATION | oise.utoronto.ca
Online and Distance Education at OISE
Clare Brett



Dr. Shelley Stagg Peterson
Associate Professor, CTL

Focus: Literacy

I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Curriculum Teaching and Learning at OISE. My research and teaching interests are in elementary and adolescent literacy with a focus on socio-cultural issues in writing and writing assessment.
I joined the faculty at OISE/UT in 1999. For three years prior to that, I was an Assistant Professor at Ohio State University at the Lima campus. I completed my doctorate in Elementary Education at the University of Alberta. My doctoral work focused on literacy and language development and children's literature. My academic work is grounded in eight years of elementary classroom teaching in central and northern Alberta.
I am currently involved in a project, Teachers Learning Together, with Larry Swartz funded by the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario. This project involves conducting four case studies of teacher action research teams. In addition to conducting the case studies, Dr. Swartz and I meet with these and six additional research teams across Ontario to support their action research.
I initiated a peer-reviewed online journal of classroom based research in literacy with the intent of publishing research by classroom teachers and by teacher candidates. The first issue is due to be published in August, 2008. The journal and a research study examining the professional development potential of writing and reviewing for the journal are funded by an OISE/UT University Partnership Grant and a Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat Research Grant. For more information about contributing to the journal or serving as a reviewer, please check out the Journal of Classroom Research in Literacy website.
I am working with Dr. Jill McClay at the University of Alberta on a three-year research study funded by SSHRC: Practices and contexts for teaching writing in contemporary Canadian elementary and middle schools. In the first phase of our research, we are interviewing 230 grades 4-8 teachers in all provinces and territories to get a comprehensive picture of writing instruction and assessment across Canada. We are particularly interested in how teachers are responding to the social, cultural and linguistic uniqueness of their community contexts, how they are using technology and multimedia in writing, and how they are responding to provincial assessment demands.

Current Online Courses:

CTL 1009: Theory and Practice in Elementary Literacy Learning
This course examines a number of theoretical perspectives on literacy learning and instruction, exploring their implications for work with students in primary/junior/intermediate classrooms. Topics such as literacy across the curriculum, reading comprehension, beginning writing instruction, use of media and technology in writing, and sociocultural influences on literacy learning, will be explored in terms of various theoretical approaches.

Technologies Currently Used in Online Courses:

Web KF2, video clips


Peterson, S. (2005). Writing across the curriculum: Because all teachers teach writing. Winnipeg, MB: Portage and Main Press.
Peterson, S. (2004). Writers, books and teachers: A resource for guided writing instruction. 
Winnipeg, MB: Portage and Main Press.

Peterson, S. (Ed.). (2003). Untangling some knots in K-8 writing instruction. Newark, DE: International Reading Association.

Peterson, S. (1997). Teaching conventions unconventionally. Edmonton, AB: F.P. Hendriks.
Peterson, S. (1995). Becoming better writers. Edmonton, AB: F.P. Hendriks.

Chapters in Books
Peterson, S. S. (2007). Writing. In B. J. Bank (Ed.), Gender and education: An encyclopedia (pp. 457-462). New York: Greenwood Press.
Peterson, S. (2006). Influence of gender on writing development. C. MacArthur, S. Graham, & J. Fitzgerald (Eds.), Handbook of writing research. (pp. 311-323). New York: Guilford.

Arnold, J., & Peterson, S. (2003). Untangling knots through talking about writing. In S. Peterson (Ed.), Untangling some knots in K-8 writing instruction. (pp. 17-26.) Newark, DE: International Reading Association.

Peterson, S. (2003). Gender influences on student writing: A knot in our teaching or not? In S. Peterson (Ed.), Untangling some knots in K-8 writing instruction. (pp. 77-86.) Newark, DE: International Reading Association.

Recently Published Refereed Articles
Burke, A., & Peterson, S. (2007). A multidisciplinary approach to literacy through picture books and drama. English Journal, 96(3), 74- 79.
Peterson, S. S. (2007). Teaching writing with the help of content across the curriculum. Middle School Journal, 26-33.

Peterson, S. S., Botelho, M., Jan, E., & Kerekes, J. (2007). Writing assessment: What would multiliteracies teachers do? Literacy Learning: The Middle Years, 15(1), 29-35.

Peterson, S. S., & Heywood, D. (2007). Contributions of families' linguistic and cultural capital to ESL students' literacy: Parents', teachers', and principals' perspectives. Canadian Modern Language Review, 63(4), 517-538.

Peterson, S. S., & Ladky, M. (2007). A survey of teachers' and principals' practices and challenges in fostering new immigrant parent involvement. Canadian Journal of Education, 30(3), 881.
Peterson, S. S., & McClay, J. (2007). Teaching writing in five Canadian provinces: A new literacies analysis. E-Learning, 4(3), 367-377.

Peterson, S., & Belizaire, M. (2006). Another look at roles in literature circles. Middle School Journal, 37(4), 37-43.

Peterson, S., & Kennedy, K. (2006). Grade six teachers' feedback on girls' and boys' narrative and persuasive writing. Written Communication, 23(1), 36-62.
Rochwerger, L., Peterson., S., & Calovini, T. (2006). Multigenre lab reports: Connecting literacy and science. Science Scope, 29(7), 26-29.

Peterson, S., & Calovini,T. (2004). Social ideologies in grade eight students' conversation and narrative writing. Linguistics and Education 14, 121-139.

Peterson, S., Childs, R., & Kennedy, K. (2004). Written feedback and scoring of sixth-grade girls' and boys' narrative and persuasive writing. Assessing Writing 9(2), 160-180.

Sharing Best Practices - Favourite Online Teaching Strategy:

Students appreciate the ongoing feedback I provide in the weekly conversations and the interim assessment I send them on their online participation.

Contact Information:

Website: http://leo.oise.utoronto.ca/~speterson/
Email: speterson@oise.utoronto.ca
Telephone: (416) 978-0329