Karen Vocke

Karen Vocke

Karen Vocke


Dr. Karen Vocke

Associate Professor
English Education, Literacy, and Language

Mailing address

Department of English
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5331

Office: (269) 387-2601


911 Sprau


Ph.D., University of Toledo

Research Interests

Karen Vocke teaches courses in English education, literacy, and language. Her research interests include critical literacy, migrant education, English-as-a-Second-Language, bilingual education, and international literacy perspectives. She is the author of Where Do I Go From Here? Meeting the Unique Educational Needs of Migrant Students (Heinemann, 2007) based upon her work with teachers and migrant farm workers across the U.S. She continues her work in the area of migrant education by working extensively with southwest Michigan school districts in their migrant education initiatives.

Vocke has also conducted research on education in Cuba, and coauthored a chapter on this topic in the World Education Encyclopedia (Galegroup, 2001). Her work in Cuba examined the efficacy of that country's educational system and the means by which Cuba attained one of the world's highest literacy rates in a society of limited resources. Vocke has also published articles in Education Studies and the Language Arts Journal of Michigan. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Toledo in, specializing in Curriculum & Instruction/Literacy and Social Foundations of Education. Her M.A. in Teacher Education/Literacy is from Eastern Michigan University. Vocke's doctoral dissertation is entitled Literacy and Ideology in Cuba's Special Period.

She has taught at Eastern New Mexico University, the University of Toledo, and Eastern Michigan University. At Eastern New Mexico University, she served as Acting Director during the summer of 2002 for the High Plains Writing Project, a local site of the National Writing Project. She is a member of the National Council of Teachers of English, the Michigan Council of Teachers of English, the Conference on English Education, as well as the National Writing Project, and the Third Coast Writing Project (for which she serves as English Language Learner Liaison). Vocke's teaching experience includes courses in English Education literacy, language arts, multicultural literature, diversity education, children's literature (both early and middle grades), classroom management, and composition. As a believer in the power of community outreach, she regularly implements service-learning initiatives in which her pre-interns tutor and mentor students in area classrooms and social agencies.

In addition to Vocke's professional publications, she has made numerous conference presentations at NCTE, CCCC, MCTE, NREA, and several international education conferences in Cuba.


Department of English
6th floor Sprau Tower
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5331 USA
(269) 387-2572 | (269) 387-2562 Fax