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Sweta Baniya

Sweta Baniya, Assistant Professor

Sweta Baniya, Assistant Professor
Sweta Baniya, Assistant Professor

Department of English
437 Shanks Hall 
180 Turner Street, NW 
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Sweta Baniya is an assistant professor of rhetoric, professional and technical writing at Virginia Tech. She specializes on transnational disaster studies, risk/crisis communication, non-Western rhetorical traditions, and community engagement. 

Her research centers around the ever evolving and challenging global issue of natural and manmade disasters, such as earthquakes or climate change. In doing so, her research draws together non-Western and Western paradigms with the goal of demonstrating how such combinations produce not only new insights but also important public interventions. Her applied research draws these non-Western paradigms into dialogue with contemporary rhetorical framings of natural and manmade disasters for the purpose of supporting local and global communities faced with responding to such events.

Her works have appeared on Encultration, Journal of Business & Technical Communication, Journal of Technological Studies. She is also founding member of nextGEN, an international graduate student listserv. 

  • Professional and Technical Writing
  • Non-Western Rhetorics 
  • Cultural and Digital Rhetoric 
  • Transnational Disaster Rhetorics and Risk/Crisis Communication 
  • Community and Civic Engagement 
  • PhD in English (Rhetoric and Composition), Purdue University, Lafayette, IN,
  • Master of Philosophy in English, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal 
  • Master of Arts in English, Pokhara University, Kathmandu, Nepal


  • Editorial Board Member, Studies in Rhetoric and Writing
  • Editorial Board Member, Young Scholars in Writing
  • Advisor, Code for Nepal
  • Digital Media and Outreach Director, Coalition of Feminist Scholars in the History of Rhetoric 
  • Alternative Interactions Planning Committee, Coalition of Feminist Scholars in the History of Rhetoric 
  • Stage I Reviewer Conference on College Composition and Communication 2021
  • Member, nextGEN Special Committee for CCCC
  • Member, CCCC Wikipedia Initiative Committee
  • Member, Coalition for Community Writing’s Engaged Graduate Student Initiative
  • Founding Member, nextGEN 
  • Conference on College Composition and Communication Chairs’ Memorial Scholarship, 2020
  • Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication and Bedford St. Martin’s Diversity Scholarship Award, 2019
  • Computers and Writing Conference Kairos Service Award for Graduate Students and Adjuncts, 2019


Journal Articles

Baniya, S. (2022). Transnational Assemblages in Disaster Response: Networked Communities, Technologies, and Coalitional Actions During Global Disasters. Technical Communication Quarterly31(4), 326–342.

Baniya, S., (May, 2022). How Can Technical Communicators Help in Disaster Response? Technical Communications, 69 (2).

Baniya, S., Brien, A., Call, K., Kumar, R., (2021) Covid, International Partnerships, and the Possibility of Equity: Enhancing Digital Literacy in Rural Nepal amid a Pandemic. Reflections, 21 (1)Publication with undergraduate students and community partner. URL

Baniya, S., (2021). The Implication of Transnational Activism and Disaster Response for Global Social Justice. Spark: A 4C4Equality Journal.  (Invited publication). Eight pages approx. Online.  URL:  

Baniya, S., & Chen, C. (2021). Experiencing a Global Pandemic: The Power of Public Storytelling as Counternarrative in Crisis Communication.  Special Issue of Technical Communication on “The Work of Storytelling in Technical CommunicationTechnical Communications (p. 74-87). 13 pages. (Lead author). Print. 

Baniya, S., & Potts, L., (2021). Valuing Expertise During the Pandemic. Journal of Business and Technical Communication, 35(1) 28-34. Print. Seven Pages. (Lead author)

Sherman, D., Mentzer, N., Baniya, S., Bartholomew, S., & Laux, D. (2021). Across the Disciplines: Our Gained Knowledge in Assessing a First-Year Integrated Experience. International Journal of Technology and Design Education. (23 pages). Print. (Co-author)

Baniya, S., Brein, A., & Call, K. (2021). International Service Learning in Technical Communication during a Global Pandemic. Programmatic Perspective, 12(2), 26–58. 

Baniya, S., Doan, S., Kumari, A., Johnson, G. P., & Schwarz, V. M. (2021). Coalitional literacies of digital safety and solidarity: A white paper on nextGEN international listserv. Computers and Composition62

Baniya, S. (2020). Managing Environmental Risks: Rhetorical Agency and Ecological Literacies of Women During the Nepal Earthquake. Enculturation (32) Special Issue: Rhetorics and Literacies of Climate Change11 pages approx. Online. URL (Single-authored)

Bartholomew, S.R., Mentzer, N, Jones, M., Sherman, D., & Baniya, S., (2020) Learning by Evaluating (LbE) through Adaptive Comparative Judgment. International Journal of Technology and Design Education. Online. 15 pages. (Co-author) (Winner of Silvius-Wolansky Outstanding Publication Award awarded by Council on Technology and Engineering Teacher Education)

Parupudi, T., Sherman, D., Mentzer, N., Chesley, A., Baniya, S., & Laux, D. (2020) Oral Communication in an Integrated STEM and Humanities First-Year Experience. Journal of Technology Education, 32 (1), 50-64. Print. 14 pages. (Co-author)

Kumari, A, Baniya, S., & Larson, K. (2020).  The Necessity of Genre Disruption in Organizing an Advocacy Space for and by Graduate Students. Xchanges15 (1), 1-8. Online. Egiht Pages. (Co-author)

Baniya, S., Chesley, A., Mentzer, N., Bartholomew, S., Moon, C., & Sherman, D. (2019). Using Adaptive Comparative Judgment in Writing Assessment: An Investigation of Reliability Among Interdisciplinary Evaluators. Journal of Technological Studies, 45 (2), 24-45. Print. 22 Pages. (Lead author)

Baniya S., & Weech, S. (2019). Data and Experience Design: Negotiating Community-Oriented Digital Research with Service-Learning. Purdue Journal of Service-Learning and International Engagement, 6,11–16. Print. Six Pages. (Lead author)

Baniya, S; Diab, K; Hendrickson, B; Grayson, M.L; Holly, H; Kumari, A; Larson, K; Messina, C.M; Paul, G; Ruiz, I. (2019) “Where we Are: Dialogue and Disciplinary Space.” Composition Studies47 (2): 203–210. Eight Pages. (Co-authored)

[1] Primary Author

Book Chapters

Baniya, S. (2020). Rhetorical Comparison of Hindu God Krishna and Plato: An Exploration of Non-Western Hindu Rhetoric. In K. Lloyd. (Eds.), The Routledge Companion of Comparative and World Rhetorics, pp. 164-172Routledge.

Funding Organization: Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication. Research Grant with Dr. Jessica Edwards, Dr. Jennifer Sano-Franchini, Dr. Josephine Walwema. ($2,000) for the project: “Service Learning in Technical and Professional Communication through Social Justice and Intercultural Frameworks: A Multisite Study” ($2,000)

  • 3104: Professional Writing
  • 3814: Creating User Documentation with Service Learning 

Currently, her class 3814: Creating User Documentation is partnering with Code for Nepal to create user documents to increase digital literacy in Nepal. 

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