Neil Simpkins

Assistant Professor

Neil Simpkins

B.A., English Literature, Agnes Scott College
M.A., Literary Studies, UW-Madison
Ph.D., Composition and Rhetoric, UW-Madison

Office: UW1-333
Phone: 425.352.3734


I explore how disabled students experience college writing, and the rhetorical tactics they use to navigate higher education. I’m also interested in how writers use planners and journaling as part of their writing process.


At UW Bothell, I primarily teach in the First Year Composition Program. In my classes, we research, critique, and write about access in higher education. Through writing and interactive classroom practices, we interrogate how we got to college, how to thrive, and how to change higher education for the better.

Recent Courses Taught

BWRIT 134 Composition
BWRIT 135 Research Writing


My current projects use qualitative interviewing methods to explore how students with disabilities navigate higher education. I describe how students learn and transfer knowledge about access and accommodations across college classrooms, particularly as they relate to college writing. I contrast the impact of set timeframes like quarters and deadlines with the crip time inherent in disabled embodiment. I also grapple with how disabled students resist, take up, and use disability identity rhetorically.

I am gearing up for a project that explores how disabled students use planning and journaling techniques as an important part of their writing process. Later down the road I’m hoping to explore how transgender people experience and navigate the literacy systems that constrain and enact trans life in the United States.

Selected Publications