Andrea Jonahs

Continuing Lecturer

Andrea Jonahs
PhD, Communication Studies, University of Calgary
MFA, Nonfiction Writing, University of Iowa

BS, Clinical Lab Science, Andrews University

Extension: 4


I was born and raised in the Metro Vancouver area, moved to Winnipeg for high school, and then to Michigan for university.  My undergraduate degree trained me to be a medical technologist, but after a few years of analyzing body fluids on the midnight shift in an Indiana lab, in an act of desperation, I turned to writing.  I was especially drawn to memoir and personal essay, which led me to complete a Masters in Fine Arts in Nonfiction Writing from the University of Iowa.  After living in the United States for 13 years, I returned to Canada in 2010 to pursue a PhD in Communication Studies at the University of Calgary.  My dissertation explored how people talk about interracial relationships and what their discourses revealed about racial ideology.

In 2017, I began teaching at the University of Waterloo as part of the Undergraduate Communication Outcomes (UCO) initiative.  Most of my teaching concerns professional communication for STEM students, but I also teach academic writing, creative writing, and occasionally, a course on race and new media. 

My current research explores ways to build “science identity” among STEM students in communication courses, which you can read more about here.  I continue to be interested in how interracial relationships are represented, particularly in popular media, and how everyday forms of racism and anti-racism manifest in various domains of social life.

Selected publications

Scholarly Publications

Jonahs, A. (2022). Everyday anti-racism and (un)common sense in discourses about romantic interracial relationships. Journal of Critical Race Inquiry, 9(1), 1-20.

Jonahs, A. (2021). Colorblind and colorbound: Everyday neoliberalism in the discourses on romantic interracial relationships. Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, 18(1), 1-18.

George, L., Weaver, K., Figueiredo, R., Mercer, K., Jonahs, A., et al. (2020, June).  Information-seeking behavior among first-year engineering students and the impacts of pedagogical intervention. In 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference.

Jonahs, A. (2011). Infrastructural strangeness in virtual spaces. Graduate Journal of Social Science, 8(3).

Literary Publications

Jonahs, A. (2010). Missing persons. Cold Mountain Review. Spring 2010.

Jonahs, A. (2008). Pronounced ‘ch’ with an ‘eye’ at the end. Gastronomica, 8(1). 

Jonahs, A. (2006). Waking us all. Marginalia, 2(3).

Grants & Awards

University of Waterloo Outstanding Performance Award, 2o21

University of Waterloo Centre for Teaching Excellence (CTE) Learning Innovation and Teaching Enhancement (LITE) Grant, 2021

Current Research

Currently, I'm working on articles and a book proposal related to my doctoral research.

Research Areas

  • Critical discourse analysis
  • Critical race theory
  • Race and new media