Learning Sciences
School of Education + Social Policy
Northwestern University
233 Annenberg Hall, 2120 Campus Drive
Evanston, IL 60208




Ph.D. Learning Sciences (2012-present). Northwestern University, Evanston, IL

  • Advisors: Dr. Wan Shun Eva Lam & Dr. Matthew Easterday

Graduate Certificate in Diversity Leadership (2010). Temple University, Philadelphia, PA

  • Training in Transformative Social Therapy with founder of the method Charles Rojzman

B.A. American Culture & Media Arts (2008). Temple University, Philadelphia, PA

  • Honors Thesis: Before + After Photography: The Makeover Method to Discipline and Punish
  • Advisor: Dr. Paul Swann


Smirnov, N., Saiyed, G., Easterday, M., Lam, WSE (in review). Journalism as Model for Civic and Information Literacies.

Lam, Wan Shun Eva & Smirnov, N. (forthcoming). Literacy and Identity in Mediated Contexts of Transnationalism and Mobility. In S. Thorne and S. May (eds). Encyclopedia of Language and Education, Volume 8: Language, Education, and Technology. Springer.

Ferman, B., Smirnov, N. (forthcoming). Shifting Stereotypes and Storylines: The Personal and Political Impact of Youth Media. In Conner and SM Rosen (eds). Contemporary Youth Activism: Advancing Social Justice in the United States. Praeger

Smirnov, N., Ferman, B., and Cabral, N. (2015). POPPYN: A Philly Youth News Platform. In E. Gordon and P. Mihailidis (eds). Civic Media Project. Retrieved from

Conference Presentations

Smirnov, N. & Lam, Wan Shun Eva. (April 2015). We Make It Pop: Youth Media as Carnivalized Syncretic Texts. American Education Research Association Annual Meeting 2015, Chicago, IL.

Smirnov, N., Saiyeed, G., and Easterday, M. (April 2015). Journalism as Model for Civic and Information Literacies. American Education Research Association Annual Meeting 2015, Chicago, IL.

Smirnov, N. (April 2015). Students as Journalists, Teachers as Designers, Schools as Connected Communities . American Education Research Association Annual Meeting 2015, Chicago, IL.

Smirnov, N., (April 2014). Multimodal Voicing in Youth-Produced News . American Education Research Association Annual Meeting 2014, Philadelphia, PA.

Smirnov, N., (March 2014). Public Diss-Course: Genre-Bending and Multimodal Voicing in Youth Produced Media . Digital Media and Learning Conference 2014, Boston, MA.

Lam, Wan Shun Eva, Smirnov, N., Chang, A, Easterday, M., Rosario-Ramos, E., (November 2013). Multimodal Voicing and Scale Making in Youths’ Video Documentaries on Immigration. American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting, Chicago, IL.

Smirnov, N., Briscoe, S. (July 2011). What’s POPPYN? The Challenges and Successes of a Youth Produced News Show. National Association for Media Literacy Education Conference, Philadelphia, PA.

Smirnov, N. (February 2011). Using Media Production for Research & Community Engagement: The Case of Senior Projects. Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development Conference, Philadelphia, PA (2011)

Smirnov, N. (April 2008). Before & After Photography: The Makeover Method to Discipline and Punish. Temple Undergraduate Research Forum / Creative Works Symposium, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA.

 Conference Panels Organized

Identity Production in Progress!: Multimodal and Creative Engagements with Media Across Genres. Symposium at the American Educational Research Association’s (AERA) Conference, Chicago, IL. 2015
Participants: Ksenia Korobkova (UC Irvine), Kalonji Nzinga (Northwestern), Jolie Matthews (Stanford), Sujin Kim (U of Missouri, St. Louis), Natalia Smirnov (Northwestern)
Discussant: Dr. Janice Radway, Northwestern University

Workshops and Community presentations

  • Infrastructuring Civic Action: Social Network Participatory Design with Youth. Workshop presented at the Digital Media and Learning Conference 2015, Los Angeles, CA with staff and Youth Editorial Members of Chicago Youth Voices Network.
  • SchisMania: A Simulation for Exploring Interpersonal Power Dynamics. Workshop presented at the Free Minds Free People: Education for Liberation Conference 2013, Chicago, IL.
  • Media 4 Ur Cause. Workshop presented at One Voice, One City: Education and Empowerment Summit 2010, Philadelphia, PA.
  • Youth, Media & Identity. Workshop presented at PA BUSTED! Conference 2009. Philadelphia, PA
  • Youth, Media & Identity. Workshop presented at Youth Leadership Development Conference 2008, Philadelphia, PA.



  • SEGAL DESIGN CLUSTER FELLOWSHIP, Northwestern University (2013)
  • GRADUATE STUDENT FELLOWSHIP, Northwestern University (2012)
  • SUMMA CUM LAUDE, Temple University (2008)
  • UPPER LEVEL HONORS SCHOLAR, Temple University (2006-2008)
  • DIAMOND RESEARCH SCHOLAR AWARD, Temple University (2007)
  • BUSER MERIT SCHOLARSHIP, Temple University (2006)
  • AMERICORPS EDUCATION AWARD, Middlesex County College (2006)
  • SILAS H. RHODES SCHOLARSHIP, School of Visual Arts (2003)