Education in Appalachia: Resources

This is in no way an exhaustive list of literature on the topic of education in Appalachia. It should act as a springboard for individuals interested in further research, discussion, or writing about the crisis of education in the region. 

Addington, James R. 2011. “Education and Development in Rural Appalachia: An Environmental Education Perspective.” Ph.D. diss., Ohio University. 188 pp.

Ambrose, Nathan Robert. 2008. “Overcoming Barriers to Student Achievement: A Case Analysis of High-Poverty Schools Becoming High-Performing Schools”   [Ky.; two high schools].  Ed.D. diss., University of Kentucky. 242 pp.

Asbury, Jo Ann. The Changing Image Of Appalachian Children’s Literature. n.p.: 1995. ERIC. Web. 17 Nov. 2015.

Barrett, N., Cowen, J., Toma, E., & Troske, S. (2015). “Working With What They Have: Professional Development as a Reform Strategy in Rural Schools.” Journal of Research in Rural Education, 30:10, 1-18.

Best, Ramona Goddard. 2002. “Perceptions of the Educational Experiences of Students Educated Exclusively in K–12 Rural Unit Schools in East Tennessee.” Ed.D. diss., East Tennessee State University. 166 pp.

Bicknell, Teresa Adele. 2001. “Faculty Perceptions of School Success in Four High-Achieving, High-Poverty Schools in Appalachian Tennessee.” Ed.D. diss., Tennessee State University. 213 pp.

Brashears, Kathy. “Appalachian Picturebooks, Read-alouds, and Teacher-led Discussion: Combating Stereotypes Associated with the Appalachian Region.” Childhood Education 88:1 (2012): 30+. Academic OneFile. Web. 22 Oct. 2015.

Brashears, Kathy McCollum.  2004. “‘They Ain’t all Blueberries’: An Examination of the Teaching of Writing Practices in an Appalachian Elementary School.” [Ky.] Ed.D. diss., University of Kentucky. 232 pp.

Bratt, K. “A Dozen Great Books for Pre-Service Teachers: Ethical Children Negotiate the World Around Them.” Journal of Children’s Literature, 35:2 (2009): 77-80.

Burriss, Theresa L., Gantt, Patricia M. eds. Appalachia In the Classroom: Teaching the Region. Athens: Ohio University Press, 2013.

Bo Chang “Education for Social Change: Highlander Education in the Appalachian Mountains and Study Circles in Sweden.” International Journal of Lifelong Education, 32:6 (2013): 705-723, DOI: 10.1080/02601370.2013.773571

Chenoweth, E., & Galliher, R. “Factors Influencing College Aspiration of Rural West Virginian High School Students.” Journal of Research in Rural Education, 19:2 (2004): 1-14.

Clark, Amy D. “Voices in the Appalachian Classroom.” Talking Appalachian: Voice, Identity, and Community. Clark, Amy D., Hayward, Nancy M. eds. The University Press of Kentucky, 2013.

Cockley, Suzanne K.  2003. “School and Community on Their Minds: Appalachian Perspectives on Education” [attitudes toward leadership and familial structure of schools]. Ph.D. diss., University of Virginia. 148 pp.

Corey, Jean Thompson. 2000. “The Gendering of Literacies: The Reading and Writing Practices of Adolescent Girls in Rural Appalachia.” D.A. diss., Middle Tennessee University. 132 pp.

Cox, Prince Elizabeth. “Perspectives Of Educators Engaged In Continuous Improvement Efforts Within A Rural Appalachian School Setting.” n.p.: 2014. Library Catalog. Web. 22 Oct. 2015.

Department of Education, (ED). “Appalachian Region: A Report Identifying And Addressing The Educational Needs.” US Department Of Education (2011): ERIC. Web. 22 Oct. 2015.

Elam, Constance. 2003. “That’s Just the Way It Was: Teacher Experiences in Appalachian Kentucky, 1930-1960” [Pike Co.; 16 retired teachers interviewed]. Ph.D. diss., University of Texas at Austin. 225 pp.

Eller, Ronald D. Uneven Ground: Appalachia Since 1945. The University Press of Kentucky, 2008.

Ellis, Michael. “The Treatment of Dialect in Appalachian Literature.” Talking Appalachian: Voice, Identity, and Community. Clark, Amy D., Hayward, Nancy M. eds. The University Press of Kentucky, 2013.

Ensor, Allison. “American Realism and the Case for Appalachian Literature.” In Higgs, Robert J., Ambrose N. Manning, and Jim Wayne Miller, eds. Appalachia Inside Out: A Sequel to Voices from the Hills: Volume 2 Culture and Custom. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 1995. pp.630-641.

Fisher, S. “Claiming Appalachia – and the Questions That Go With it.” Appalachian Identity: A Roundtable Discussion. Appalachian Journal, 38:1 (2010): 58-61.

Goodman, S., Cocca, C. “Spaces of Action: Teaching Critical Literacy for Community Empowerment in the Age of Neoliberalism.” English Teaching: Practice and Critique. 13:3 (2014): 210-226.

Haaga, J. (2004). Educational Attainment in Appalachia. Washington, D.C: Appalachian Regional Commission.

Hall, Abigail R. “Mountains of Disappointment: The Failure of State-Led Development Aid in Appalachia.” The Journal of Private Enterprise 29:2 (2014): 83–100.

Hendrickson, Katie A. “Student Resistance To Schooling: Disconnections With Education In Rural Appalachia.” High School Journal 4 (2012): 37. Academic OneFile. Web. 22 Oct. 2015.

Herrin, Roberta H. “Universal Themes in Appalachian Children’s Literature.” Education in Appalachia: Proceedings from the 1987 Conference on Appalachia. University of Kentucky, 1987. (117-123).

Herrin, Roberta T., Oliver, Sheila Q. Appalachian Children’s Literature: An Annotated Bibliography. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers, 2009

Hektner, J. M. “When Moving Up Implies Moving Out: Rural Adolescent Conflict in the Transition to Adulthood.” Journal of Research in Rural Education 11:1 (1995): 3-14.

House, Silas. “In My Own Country.” Talking Appalachian: Voice, Identity, and Community. Clark, Amy D., Hayward, Nancy M. eds. The University Press of Kentucky, 2013.

Howley, C. B., H. L. Harmon, and G. D. Leopold. “Rural Scholars or Bright Rednecks? Aspirations For a Sense of Place Among Rural Youth in Appalachia.” Journal of Research in Rural Education 12:3 (1996): 150-160.

Howley, Caitlin. “Purpose and Place: Schooling and Appalachian Residence.” Journal of Appalachian Studies 12:1 (2006): 58-78.

Johnson, Jerry, (ED) Regional Educational Laboratory Appalachia, and Education CNA. “Contexts And Conditions Of Public K-12 Education In Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, And West Virginia: A Descriptive Report.” Regional Educational Laboratory Appalachia (2010): ERIC. Web. 22 Oct. 2015.

Jones, J. B. Book Learning: Exploring the Meaning of Formal Education in Central Appalachia. Available from ERIC. (1697503249; ED554531). Retrieved from

Levin, F. “Encouraging Ethical Respect Through Multicultural Literature.” The Reading Teacher 6:1 (2007): 101-104.

McHaffie, Patrick H. “Contingency In The Local Provision Of Public Education.” Growth & Change 29:2 (1998): 196. Business Source Complete. Web. 22 Oct. 2015.

McLaren, Elizabeth, Rutland, Julie Harp. “Preparing Early Childhood Special Educators in Rural Kentucky.” Rural Special Education Quarterly 32:1 (2013).

McLaren, Peter. “Life in Schools: An Introduction to Critical Pedagogy in the Foundations of Education.” University of California: Los Angeles, 1998.

Miller, Danny, Ballard, Sandra, Herrin, Roberta, Mooney, Stephen D., Underwood, Susan, Wright, Jack. “Appalachian Literature.” In Edwards, Grace Toney, JoAnn Aust Asbury, and Ricky L. Cox, eds. A Handbook to Appalachia: An Introduction to the Region. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 2006. pp. 199-216.

Miller, Danny L., Sharon Hatfield, and Gurney Norman, eds. An American Vein: Critical Readings in Appalachian Literature. Athens, Ohio: Ohio Univ. Press, 2005.

Miller, Jim Wayne. “A People Waking Up: Appalachian Literature Since 1960.” In The Cratis Williams Symposium Proceedings. Boone, N.C.: Appalachian Consortium Press, 1990.

Nelsen, Hart, and Frost, Eleanor. “Residence, Anomie, And Receptivity To Education Among Southern Appalachian Presbyterians.” Rural Sociology 36.4 (1971): 521-532. Education Source. Web. 22 Oct. 2015.

Sampson, Alice V., and Roberta T. Herrin. “The Appalachian Teaching Project: An Opportunity for Academic-Community Activism.” Appalachian Journal 34: ¾ (2007): 352-383.

Sepko, Catherine Cook. 1998. “Critical Literacy in an Appalachian Classroom” [S.C.; Appalachian Literature in the Curriculum]. Ph.D. diss., Clemson University. 395 pp.

Shaw, Thomas C., Alan J. De Young, and Eric W. Rademacher. “Educational Attainment in Appalachia: Growing With the Nation, But Challenges Remain.” Journal of Appalachian Studies 10:3 (2004): 307-329.

Slocum, Audra. “Look What They Said About Us: Social Positioning Work of Adolescent Appalachians in English Class.” English Teaching: Practice and Critique 13:3 (2014): 194-209.

Smith, Jennifer Sue. 2001. “Mining the Mountain of Appalachian Children’s Literature: Defining a Multicultural Literature.” Ph.D. diss., Ohio State University. 207 pp.

Teets, Sharon. “Education in Appalachia.” In Edwards, Grace Toney, JoAnn Aust Asbury, and Ricky L. Cox, eds. A Handbook to Appalachia: An Introduction to the Region. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 2006. pp. 119-142.

Valentine, Valerie D. 2008. “An Investigation of Authenticity and Accuracy in Children’s Realistic Fiction Picture Books Set in Appalachia.” Ph.D. diss., Ohio University. 252 pp.

Waitt, Alden. “‘A Good Story Takes Awhile’: Appalachian Literature in the High School Classroom.” Journal of Appalachian Studies 12:1 (2006): 79-101.

Wallace, Lisa A., and Diane K. Diekroger. “The Abcs In Appalachia”: A Descriptive View Of Perceptions Of Higher Education In Appalachian Culture.” (2000): ERIC. Web. 22 Oct. 2015.

Wright, C. J. “Becoming to Remain: Community College Students and Post- Secondary Pursuits in Central Appalachia.” Journal of Research in Rural Education, 27:6 (2012). Retrieved from http://jrre./ ​


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