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Jody Polleck

Associate Professor and Program Coordinator for Literacy

906 West
(212) 772-4639

Jody Polleck completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Maryland-College Park, majoring in journalism and English with a minor in women's studies.  She began her work with urban adolescents in 1994 as an outreach counselor for runaway teenagers in Washington, D.C.  In 1999, she received her Master's in English education at the University of South Florida and worked as a high school reading and English teacher in a dropout prevention program.  In 2002, she received National Board Certification for adolescent and young adulthood/English language arts.  In 2003, Jody received a full fellowship to New York University where she completed her doctoral degree in English education in 2007.  In addition to teaching and researching at Hunter College, Jody trains teachers and administrators at the district, state, and national level and has developed several district and regional curriculum guides for reading, English, and social studies.  Jody also still holds a position at a local high school in the Lower East Side, where she serves as an instructional coach and a literacy intervention specialist for students who struggle with reading and writing.


SEDC 211/711: Advanced Study of Young Adult Literature in Our Diverse Society

EDLIT 740: Leadership in Literacy

EDLIT 742/752: Practicum in Literacy

EDLIT 745: Literacy Research for Change

EDLIT 755: Literacy Instruction for Struggling Readers and Writers

EDLIT 757: Practicum in Literacy Assessment and Intervention (Grades 5-12)


Jody's research focus is on urban adolescents and culturally responsive and differentiated literacy instruction across the content areas. Specifically, she has worked with urban adolescents and their experiences in student-led book and writing clubs, exploring how these alternative, supplemental forums are effective in not only promoting literacy skills but also social and emotional development. She is also looking at the complexities and intersections of race, class, gender, and sexuality within these environments and how they can be used as places for empowerment and advocacy. Finally, Jody is currently conducting practitioner, action research, particularly with her work as an English teacher and a literacy intervention specialist at the secondary level.


Polleck, J.  (2016). Using nonfiction to advocate for change.  English Journal, 105(4), 57-74.

Polleck, J.  (2016).  Breaking barriers in the classroom:  Exploring LGBTQ issues through Tony Kushner’s Angels in America.  In A. Butler-Wall, K. Cosier, R. Harper, J. Sapp, J. Sokolower, & M.B. Tempel (Eds), Rethinking Sexism, Gender, and Sexuality (pp. 243-253). Milwaukee, WI:  Rethinking Schools.

Polleck, J.  (2016).  Bring texts to life:  Using afterschool book clubs as a way to address and reinforce the common core standards for literacy with urban adolescents.  In J. Hayn, J. Kaplan, & A. Nolen (Eds), Implementing Common Core Literacy Standards through Young Adult Literature (pp. 97-113).  London, UK:  Roman & Littlefield.

Polleck, J. & Epstein, T.  (2015). Affirmation, Analysis, and Agency:  Book Clubs as Spaces for Critical Conversations with Young Adolescent Women of Color.  Reading Horizons, 54(1), 78-107.

Polleck, J. & Wirtz, J.  (2013).  Building urban pre-service teachers’ pedagogical knowledge and skills through digital poetry collaborations.  In J. Keengwe & D. Hucks (Eds.), Literacy Enrichment and Technology Integration in Pre-Service Teacher Education (pp. 37-56).  Hershey, PA:  IGI Global.

Polleck, J. & Shabdin, S.  (2013).  Building culturally responsive communities.  The Clearing House:  A Journal of Educational Strategies, 86, 1-8. 

Jeffery, J. & Polleck, J.  (2013).  Transformations in site-based teacher preparation courses:  The benefits and challenges.  In J. Novel (Ed.) Moving Teacher Education into Urban Schools and Communities:  Prioritizing Community Strengths (pp. 105-199).  London, UK:  Routledge. 

Polleck, J.  (2011). Adolescent literature book clubs:  A forum for cultivation of peer relationships with urban adolescent females.  ALAN Review, 38(1), 76-95.

Polleck, J.  (2011). Constructing dressing rooms in urban schools:  Understanding family through books clubs with Latino and African-American female adolescents.  Journal of Poetry Therapy, 24(3), 139-155.

Polleck, J.  (2011). Using book clubs to enhance social-emotional and academic learning with urban adolescent females of color.  Reading and Writing Quarterly, 27(1/2), 101-128.

Polleck, J.  (2011). Transformative scholarship:  Problematizing the role of the insider within educational research in urban settings.  In W. Blanchett & K. Scott (Eds), Research in Urban Educational Settings:  Lessons Learned and Implications for Future Practice (pp. 59-81).  Charlotte, NC:  Information Age Publishing.

Polleck, J.  (2010). Creating and maintaining a transformative community:  Book clubs with Urban Adolescent Females.  SIGNAL Journal, 33(1), 8-15.

Polleck, J. (2010).  Creating transformational spaces:  High school book clubs with inner-city adolescent females.  The High School Journal, 93(2), 50-68 

Jeffery, J. & Polleck, J.  (2010).  Reciprocity through Co-instructed Site-based Courses:  Unintended and Intended Learning for both Pre-service and In-service Teachers.  Teacher Education Quarterly, 37(3), 81-100. 

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