Dr. Sandra Ann Vavra earned her B.A. (1971) in English from SUNY, Binghamton, and completed her graduate work in Curriculum and Instruction, earning an MAT (1993) and a Ph.D. (1995) at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She is a professor in the Department of English and Mass Communications at North Carolina Central University, where she directs the English Education program. She has received two UNC-system awards for teaching excellence. Her scholarly writing involves an examination of the connections between culture, communication/ rhetoric, and pedagogy and the way the interplay among them affects literacy and learning. Recent publications include an edited collection entitled Closing the Gap: English Educators Address the Tensions between Teacher Preparation and Teaching Writing in Secondary Schools (2007); The Perfect Norm: How to Teach Differentially, Assess Effectively, and Manage a Classroom Ethically in Ways that Are "Brain-Friendly & Culturally Responsive (2009); and CLASH!: Superheroic Yet Sensible Strategies for Teaching 21st Century Literacy (2011).