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Jessica Zaker


Assistant Professor of Education



Contact Info

(989) 463-7202

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Jessica is a an Assistant Professor of Education with a specialization in Social Studies Education. Her career in education began in 2010 when she received her Bachelor’s degree in Middle Grades Education from Transylvania University in her hometown of Lexington, KY. She then taught 7th and 8th grade ELA and Social Studies for seven years in Lexington, during which time she obtained her Master’s degree and Specialist endorsement in Literacy Education from the University of Kentucky. Her desire to work with undergraduate teacher candidates and strengthen her understanding of curricular issues is what led her to leave the classroom to pursue her doctorate in Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies at Indiana University. At Alma College, she teaches elementary and secondary social studies methods, geography, and foundational education courses. Her areas of research interests include social studies education, social and civic education, critical media literacy, and teacher education. 

Educational Background:  

  • B.A. Middle Grades Education, Transylvania University (2010) 
  • M.A. Literacy Education, University of Kentucky (2015) 
  • Ph.D. Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies, Indiana University (2024) 

My Expertise

Social Studies Education; Civic Education; Critical Media Literacy; Teacher Education; Curriculum Theory.

Recent Work and Accomplishments

Zaker, J. (2023, November 29). Preservice elementary teachers’ conceptions of social issues and social action [Paper presentation]. College and University Faculty Assembly, National Council for the Social Studies Annual Conference, Nashville, TN. 

Zaker, J. (2022). Problems of Democracy textbooks of the 1920s: How well did they meet the mark? Curriculum History, 2022(1), 1-10.