Marcus B. Weaver-Hightower is a professor in the Foundations of Education program at Virginia Tech, where he teaches graduate courses in gender and education, the sociology of education, and qualitative research. He serves as the Foundations of Education program leader.
He is a former Fulbright scholar to Australia, where he conducted a yearlong study of the development and implementation of the world’s first federal-level policy on the education of boys. His research interests include the politics of boys’ education, masculinity studies, the politics of food, the use of comics and graphic novels in qualitative research and classrooms, and policy studies.
He is the author of Unpacking School Lunch: Understanding the Hidden Politics of School Food (Palgrave, 2022), How to Write Qualitative Research (Routledge, 2019), and The Politics of Policy in Boys’ Education: Getting Boys “Right” (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008). He has coedited the collections The Problem with Boys’ Education: Beyond the Backlash (Routledge, 2009), School Food Politics: The Complex Ecologies of Hunger and Feeding in Schools Around the World (Peter Lang, 2011), Leaders in Gender and Education: Intellectual Self-Portraits (Sense Publishers, 2013), and The Wiley Handbook of Gender Equity in Higher Education (Wiley, 2020). His scholarly articles have appeared in Educational Researcher, Review of Educational Research, Teachers College Record, Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, Gender and Education, The Journal of Mixed Methods Research, and Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, among others.
Marcus' work has been awarded the 2013 Anselm Strauss Award for Qualitative Family Research from the National Council on Family Relations as well as a Critics Choice Book Award from the American Educational Studies Association.
- Gender and Education
- Qualitative Research
- Educational Policy
- Food Studies
- Comics and Graphic Novels in Research and Education
- PhD in Curriculum and Instruction, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2006
- MEd in English Education, Vanderbilt University, 2000
- BA in English, Winthrop University, 1995
- Editorial / Curatorial Board Member, Critical Studies in Gender and Sexuality in Education (01-01-2014 -- present) (Routledge book series)
- Editorial / Curatorial Board Member Board Member, Reading Research Quarterly (01-01-2020 -- present)
- Editorial / Curatorial Board Member Board Member, Sex Roles (01-01-2018 -- 01-01-2021)
- Anselm Strauss Award for Qualitative Family Research (as contributor to the volume How Qualitative Data Analysis Happens: Moving Beyond “Themes Emerged”), National Council on Family Relations, 2020
- North Dakota University System Award for Innovative Use of Technology to Improve Student Learning and Success in the Classroom, 2017.
- Anselm Strauss Award for Qualitative Family Research (for the article “Waltzing Matilda: An Autoethnography of a Father’s Stillbirth”), National Council on Family Relations, 2013.
- Critics Choice Book Award for School Food Politics: The Complex Ecology of Hunger and Feeding in Schools Around the World, American Educational Studies Association, 2012
Weaver-Hightower, M. B. (2022). Unpacking school lunch: Understanding the hidden politics of school food. Palgrave.
Niemi, N. S. & Weaver-Hightower, M. B. (Eds.) Wiley Handbook of Gender Equity in Higher Education. John Wiley & Sons, 2020.
How to Write Qualitative Research. Routledge, 2019.
Weaver-Hightower, M. B., & Skelton, C. (Eds.) Leaders in Gender and Education: Intellectual Self-Portraits. Sense Publishers, 2013.
Robert, S. A. & Weaver-Hightower, M. B. (Eds.). School Food Politics: The Complex Ecologies of Hunger and Feeding in Schools around the World. Peter Lang, 2011.
Martino, W., Kehler, M., & Weaver-Hightower, M. B. (Eds.). The Problem with Boys’ Education: Beyond the Backlash. Routledge, 2009.
The Politics of Policy in Boys’ Education: Getting Boys “Right.” Palgrave Macmillan, 2008.
Select Journal Articles
Kuttner, P., Weaver-Hightower, M. B., & Sousanis, N. (2020). Comics-based research: The affordances of comics for research across the disciplines. Qualitative Research. https://doi.org/10.1177/1468794120918845
(2017). Losing Thomas and Ella: A father’s story (A research comic). Journal of Medical Humanities. doi: 10.1007/s10912-015-9359-z.
Stupnisky, R. H., Weaver-Hightower, M. B., & Kartoshkina, Y. (2015). Exploring and testing predictors of new faculty success: A mixed method study. Studies in Higher Education, 40(2), 368-390. doi: 10.1080/03075079.2013.842220.
(2014). A mixed methods approach for identifying influence on public policy. Journal of Mixed Methods Research, 8(2), 115-138. doi: 10.1177/1558689813490996.
(2012). Waltzing Matilda: An autoethnography of a father’s stillbirth. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 41, 462-491.
(2011). Why education researchers should take school food seriously. Educational Researcher, 40(1), 15-21.
(2010, May/June). Where the guys are: How concerned should we be about men in higher education? Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning.
(2008). An ecology metaphor for educational policy analysis: A call to complexity. Educational Researcher, 37 (3), 153-167.
(2003). The “boy turn” in research on gender and education. Review of Educational Research, 73 (4), 471-498.
(2002). The gender of terror and heroes? Interrogating men and masculinity after September 11, 2001. Teachers College Record. http://www.tcrecord.org/Content.asp?ContentID=11012
Select Book Chapters
(2020). Critical theories and methods in gender and higher education. In N. S. Niemi & M. B. Weaver-Hightower (Eds.), The Wiley handbook of gender equity in higher education (Chapter 24). John Wiley & Sons.
(2019). Analyzing self and other in autoethnography: Telling secrets about one’s stillborn child. In A. Humble & E. Radina (Eds.), How qualitative data analysis happens: Moving beyond “themes emerged.” Routledge.
(2018). Losing Thomas and Ella: A father’s story (A research comic) [reprint]. In J. Johnson (Ed.), Graphic Reproduction! A Comics Anthology. Penn State University Press.
*Kuttner, P., Sousanis, N., & Weaver-Hightower, M. B. (2017). How to draw comics the scholarly way: Creating comics-based research in the academy (pp. 396-422). In Leavy, P. (ed.), Handbook of arts-based research. Guilford Press.
(2013). Sequential art for qualitative research: Making comics to make meaning of the social world. In C. Syma & R. Weiner (eds.), Graphic Novels and Comics in the Classroom: Essays on the Educational Power of Sequential Art (pp. 260-273). McFarland and Company.
(2013). Waltzing Matilda: An autoethnography of a father’s stillbirth [reprint]. In P. Sikes (Ed.), Autoethnography (vol. 4). Sage.
(2011). Fixing up lunch ladies, dinner ladies and canteen managers: Cases of school food reform in the United States, England and Australia. In S. A. Robert & M. B. Weaver-Hightower (Eds.), School food politics: The complex ecology of hunger and feeding in schools around the world (pp. 46-70). Peter Lang.
(2009). Issues of boys’ education in the United States: Diffuse contexts and futures. In W. Martino, M. Kehler, & M. B. Weaver-Hightower (Eds.) The problem with boys’ education: Beyond the backlash (pp. 1-35). Routledge.
(2009). Masculinity and education. In Apple, M. W., Au, W., & Gandin, L. A. (Eds.), The Routledge international handbook of critical education (pp. 163-176). Routledge.
(2007). The boy problem [essay]. In Bank, B. J. (Ed.), Gender and education: An encyclopedia (pp. 717-722). Praeger.
(2002). The truth about grooms (Or, how to tell those tuxedoed men apart). In F. Tochon (Ed.) The foreign self: Truth telling as educational inquiry (pp. 201-217). Atwood Publishing.
- Fulbright Postgraduate Research Fellowship, Australia, 2003. Hosted by the University of Queensland.
Select Invited Lectures and Workshops
- American Educational Research Association, Washington, D.C. “How to Write About Qualitative Research,” Virtual Research Learning Series, August 6, 2020. [Online]
- University of South Florida, Tampa, FL. “Masculinity Metrics that Matter: How Universities Might Understand Men and Boys Differently,” Male Success Speaker Series, November 20, 2019.
- University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC. Two-day workshop, “How to Write Qualitative Research.” November 27-28, 2018.
- Kelsh, A., Weaver-Hightower, M. B., Zerr, R. University of Shanghai for Science and Technology, Shanghai, China. Workshop, "Innovative Pedagogy and Authentic Assessment in US Higher Education." May 24, 2016.
- University of Shanghai for Science and Technology, Shanghai, China, College of Foreign Languages. "Using Comics and Graphic Novels in Teaching and Research." May 23, 2016.
- Weaver-Hightower, M. B., & Hunter, C. North Dakota Department of Health, Comprehensive Cancer Prevention and Control Program. Workshop, “Conducting a Basic Focus Group.” November 13, 2015.
- Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, Port Elizabeth, South Africa, Provoking Scholarly Dialogues series, “Pink Slime, Pizza as a Vegetable, and Endless 'Freedom' Fries: School Food Politics in the Global Conservative Moment.” March 6, 2013.
- Australasian Boys’ Education Network, northern Queensland and Tasmania. Series of keynotes on “the boy turn” and workshops on action research. June 2006.
- Open University, Milton Keynes, England. “What About 'What About the Boys?': A Critical Examination of Issues in the Development of Curriculum for Boys.” June 8, 2001.
Select Media Mentions
Recent Academic News