Dr. Shelbie Witte is the Kim and Chuck Watson Chair in Education and professor of adolescent literacy and English Education at Oklahoma State University. She is proud to serve as site director emeritus of the Oklahoma State University Writing Project as well as the founding director of the Initiative for 21st Century Literacies Research, which recognizes the annual recipients of the Divergent Award for 21st Century Literacies Research and provides theory to practice resources for classroom teachers and students interested in implementing 21st century literacies in the classroom.
Dr. Witte began her teaching career in 1995 as an English Language Arts teacher in a small city in southwest Oklahoma. Since that time, she has taught every level of adolescents and adults, from middle school through doctoral students, in rural, urban, and suburban communities. Dr. Witte was selected as a finalist for 2008 Kansas Teacher of the Year and earned National Board Certified in Early Adolescence/English Language Arts in 2006. She has a decades-long membership to the National Council of Teachers of English, where she has served in many capacities including the nationally-elected middle-level representative to the Executive Committee and most recently co-editor, along with Sara Kajder, of the premiere middle-level journal Voices from the Middle.
Witte has published extensively in the area of digital literacies and 21st century literacies, including teacher and librarian partnerships, writing in digital spaces, young adult literature and popular culture curricular integrations. Her most recent books include Writing Changes Everything: Middle-Level Kids Writing Themselves Into the World (NCTE), From Text to Epitext (ABC-CLIO) & Literacy Engagement through Peritextual Analysis (ALA and NCTE) both with Melissa Gross and Don Latham, Toward a More Visual Literacy: Shifting the Paradigm with Digital Tools and Young Adult Literature and Young Adult Literature in the Digital World (both with Jennifer Dail and Steven Bickmore) and two titles with Brill/Sense focusing on gaming literacies (with Antero Garcia and Jennifer Dail).