Alumna Wins National Dissertation Award

Dr. Ashley Kelly, an NC State alumna, was recently announced as the winner of national award for her 2014 dissertation, “Hacking Science: Emerging Parascientific Genres and Public Participation in Scientific Research.” Her dissertation explored how citizen scientists are using new genres of science communication to secure funding and support for their projects and disseminate their results.

The Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC) will award Kelly with the Outstanding Dissertation Award in Technical Communication on March 20, during the annual CCCC Convention in Tampa, Florida. Dissertations for this award are evaluated according to five criteria: originality of research, contribution the research makes to the field, methodological soundness of the approach used, awareness of the existing research in the area studied, and overall quality of the writing.

Kelly completed her PhD in NC State’s interdisciplinary Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media program in May 2014. Kelly’s dissertation committee members included Nancy Penrose (CRDM-English), Bill Kinsella (CRDM-Communication), Jordynn Jack (UNC-Chapel Hill), Randy Allen Harris (University of Waterloo), and Carolyn Miller as the committee chair (CRDM-English). Her dissertation additionally won the NC State 2013-2014 College of Humanities and Social Sciences Dissertation Award.

Kelly is currently an Assistant Professor of Communication, Networks, and Innovation in the Brian Lamb School of Communication at Purdue University, where she is working on three major research projects. Kelly and Dr. Carolyn Miller are working on an edited book collection, Emerging Genres in New Media Environments. This is a project that brings together different traditions of genre theory. Kelly is also working on a book using the the theoretical framework developed in her dissertation. The monograph, Trans-scientific Genres: Emerging Genres of Science Communication, is a reconceptualized and expanded project that she is making good progress on and plans to send out for review in the coming months. Kelly’s third major project is a grant-funded project titled Networked Enterprise in Multidisciplinary STEM Collaborations. This project examines how bringing together different kinds of experts facilitates different kinds of expertise and knowledge production.

While studying at NC State, Kelly worked alongside Dr. Meagan Kittle Autry, another CDRM alumna and the current director of Thesis and Dissertation Support Services in the Graduate School. "While writing my dissertation I worked with the future leader of TDSS at NC State, Dr. Meagan Kittle Autry. The careful planning that goes into getting a dissertation done was one-on-one counseling I benefited from, and I'm delighted to know any NC State grad student now has access to this through TDSS."

The Graduate School would like to extend warm congratulations to Dr. Ashley Kelly for her award-winning dissertation and applauds her ongoing contributions to her field.

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