Hi! Thank you for visiting my page!

My name is Joycelyn Wilson, aka Dr. Joyce. I am an ethnographic and qualitative researcher of the Hip Hop generation, which means I study the practices and traditions of cultures and communities but I do so from the perspective of an African American woman from the South who was raised after the passing of the Civil Rights movement and during the formative years of Hip Hop culture. For the last several years I have focused primarily on the intersections of Black cultural expressive traditions like Hip Hop with STEM and social justice teaching and learning, critical media literacy, and personal storytelling. Because I am most excited about how these traditions mesh with digital media, I have developed lines of research in virtual reality.

My career began in a classroom. A high school math classroom where I decided to use rap music to teach Algebra and my Hip Hop sensibilities to manage what was a racially and economically-diverse learning environment. Since then, I have oriented by work in studying ways to archive these arts-based techniques to help youth and youth influencers responsibly enhance their math and technology skills along with their leadership, social justice, and civic engagement capacities.  Such a focus requires I disseminate my work through both the public/popular space as well as the academic/intellectual one.

Currently, I am an assistant professor of Hip Hop culture and digital media in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication at Georgia Institute of Technology. In 2016-2017, I was a Fellow in the Institute’s Digital Integrative Liberal Arts Center (DILAC), and an assistant professor in the Foundations of Education program in the Department of Learning Sciences and Technologies at Virginia Tech ‘s School of Education. I was also affiliate faculty in the Africana Studies Program, a Catalyst Fellow in the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology (ICAT), and before then, a Hiphop Archive Fellow at the W.E.B. Du Bois Research Institute at Harvard University.  In 2008, I founded what is now the Four Four Beat Project. Please take a moment and check it out here! I’m also the co-founder and co-chair of the Hip Hop Theories, Pedagogies, and Praxis SIG (Special Interest Group) for the American Educational Research Association (AERA).

I love what I do! My courses in hip hop, education, and technology have become some of the most popular in the field. “Engaging the Lyrics of Outkast and Trap Music to Explore Politics of Social Justice” was featured on NPR, in Fader, and XXL magazines among other.

My research is published as book chapters, journal articles, as documentary film, and as online social commentary. I have taken my mission on the road as well, lecturing at Georgia Tech, Kansas State, Morehouse College, Occidental College, Harvard, Yale, and other institutions. As part of the movement to usher Hip Hop culture into campus culture, I am responsible for bringing artists such as Killer Mike, David Banner, TI, Lupe Fiasco, and DJ Drama to the Atlanta University Center to engage with students attending Morehouse, Spelman, and Clark-Atlanta University.  Most recently, I sat on a SXSW panel called “What the South has to Say About the Digital Age”.  My commentary has appeared on The Root, NewsOne, HuffPost Live, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and ArtsATL. Ava DuVernay, director of the movie Selma, gave me my first feature in her BET documentary  My Mic Sounds Nice: The Truth About Women in Hip Hop . Since then, I’ve provided insight on VH1’s ATL: The Untold Story of Atlanta’s Rise in the Rap Game, and along with civil rights leader Andrew Young, I co-produced the Emmy-winning documentary Walking With Guns. Helping produce this film afforded me the opportunity to feature rapper/actor Clifford “TI” Harris, Jr. and Grammy-winning rapper/activist Michael “Killer Mike” Render. Through their stories of hope and redemption, they highlighted contemporary challenges of gun violence. I currently use the film to teach my graduate students about ethics when collecting personal stories for research purposes. Many of my music reviews and features are archived here as I’ve written for FADER, XXL, The Source, and wax poetics. Currently, I have focused my love for “message music”, southern culture, and the digital as a contributor to The Bitter Southerner.

Having received my BS in Mathematics, and PhD in Educational Foundations and Qualitative Research from the University of Georgia, I firmly stand on the shoulders of family, teachers, and mentors. (Go Dawgs!!) I went out west to Pepperdine to get my MA in Education.  Hobbies? Yes! I love reading fashion and lifestyle magazines. I like to work out. And I enjoy having provocative conversations with people about ideas that elevate their social justice conscience. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @thedrjoyce. Find my formal bio here.