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Claudia Cervantes Soon

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Associate Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 5411

Situated at the intersections of educational anthropology, critical pedagogy, bilingual education, and Chicana/Latina feminisms, Dr. Cervantes-Soon's work examines the interplay of sociocultural factors including race, class, gender, language, and citizenship/immigrant constructs in her analyses of educational contexts. Through community engaged and critical ethnographic approaches, her research captures the relationships between the localized, nuanced, and grounded perspectives and the larger global, ideological, geopolitical, and economic forces shaping contexts and practices. Dr. Cervantes-Soon's work seeks to recognize the intersectional identities and subaltern knowledges that are often ignored by dominant discourses about minoritized and border/transborder communities. Her research focuses on two broad areas of inquiry: 1) Equity and social justice in bilingual education, and 2) Borderlands/transborder Mexicana/Latina youth literacies and critical pedagogies.

Dr. Cervantes-Soon's most recent research examines the inequalities persistent in two-way dual language education and the possibilities to reclaim a focus on critical consciousness and historically marginalized, culturally diverse, and lingustically minoritized populations in bilingual education. Her current research project, "Building Black and Brown Bridges of Solidarity through Dual Language Education," has been supported by a 2017 National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship. Her contributions to the field of bilingual education have been recently recognized by a 2019 Early Career Award from the American Educational Research Association - Bilingual Education Research SIG. Dr. Cervantes-Soon's is also the author of "Juárez Girls Rising: Transformative Education of Times of Dystopia," which received a 2017 Critics' Choice Award from the American Educational Studies Association, and a 2017 C. Wright Mills Award from the Society for the Study of Social Problems, one of the most important book awards in the social sciences.

  • Ph.D. Curriculum & Instruction, Cultural Studies in Education, The University of Texas-Austin 2011
  • Graduate Portfolios in Women's & Gender Studies and Mexican American Studies, The University of Texas-Austin 2011
  • M.Ed. Bilingual Education, The University of Texas-El Paso 2004
  • B.I.S. Bilingual Education, The University of Texas-El Paso 1998


Cervantes-Soon, C. G. (2017). Juárez girls rising: Transformative education in times of dystopia. Minneapolis, MI: University of Minnesota Press.



Palmer, D. K., Cervantes-Soon, C. G., Heiman, D. B., Dorner, L. (Forthcoming). Bilingualism, Biliteracy, Biculturalism…and Critical Consciousness for All: Proposing a Fourth Fundamental Principle for Two-Way Dual Language Education. Theory into Practice.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G., Dorner, L., Palmer, D. K. Heiman*, D., Schwerdtfeger, R. & Choi, J. (2017). Combating Inequalities in Two-Way Language Immersion Programs: New Directions for Bilingual Education. Review of Research in Education, 41(1), 403-427.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. (2016). Mujeres truchas: Urban girls redefining smartness in a dystopic global south. Race Ethnicity and Education, 1-14.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. & Carrillo, J. F. (2016). Toward a pedagogy of border thinking: Building on Latin@ students’ subaltern knowledge. The High School Journal, 99(4), 282-301.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. (2014). A Critical Look at Dual Language Immersion in the New Latin@ Diaspora. Bilingual Research Journal, 37(1), 64-82.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. (2014) The U.S.-México bordercrossing Chicana researcher and the politics of identity and imperialism in critical ethnography. Journal of Latino-Latin American Studies.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. (2012). Testimonios of life and learning in the borderlands: Subaltern Juárez girls speak. Equity and Excellence in Education, 45(3), 373-391.

Soto, L.D., Cervantes-Soon, C. G., Villarreal-Perales, E. & Campos, E. (2009). The Xicana sacred space: A communal circle of compromiso for educational researchers. Harvard Educational Review. 79 (5), 755-776.



Cervantes-Soon, C. G. & Kasun, G. S. (2018). Transnational learners and TESOL. In J.I. Liontas & M. DelliCarpini (Eds.) TESOL Encyclopedia of English Language Teaching, Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Palmer, D. K., Cervantes-Soon, C. G., Heiman, D.* (2017). La condición académica del estudiante bilingüe: Cómo asegurar el éxito de los estudiantes bilingües emergentes a través del programa de doble inmersión. In L. A. Soltero & M. Guerrero (Eds.) Abriendo brecha: Antología crítica sobre la educación bilingüe de doble inmersión.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. & Turner, A. M.* (2017). Countering Silence and Reconstructing Identities in a Spanish/English Two-Way Immersion Program: Latina Mothers’ Pedagogies in El Nuevo Sur. In X. Rong & J. Hilburn (Eds.) Immigration and Education in North Carolina: The Challenges and Responses in a New Gateway State.  Boston, MA: Sense.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. (2016). Testimonios of Life and Learning in the Borderlands: Subaltern Juarez Girls Speak. In D. Delgado Bernal, R. Burciaga & J. Flores Carmona (Eds.) Chicana/Latina Testimonios as Pedagogical, Methodological, and Activist Approaches to Social Justice. New York: Routledge.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. & Carrillo, J.F (2015). Scholarship of Mind and Soul. In Hernandez, E. Murakami and G. Rodriguez (eds.) Abriendo Puertas, Cerrando Heridas (Opening Doors, Closing Wounds): Latinas/os Finding Work-Life Balance in Academia, pp. 163-172. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Inc.

Cervantes-Soon, C. G. & Valenzuela, A.  (2010). Subtractive Legislative Policy: The Plight of Bilingual Language Learners. Chapter prepared for B. Bustos Flores, R. Hernandez Sheets, and E. Riojas Clark (Eds.), Educar para Transformar: Teacher Preparation for Bilingual Student Populations, pp. 191-204. New York: Routledge.





Summer 2022
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 522Bi/Multilingual Acq & Devlpmnt
Spring 2022
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 220Foundations of SEI
DCI 790Reading and Conference
Fall 2021
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 400Prin of Language Minority Educ
EPA 691Seminar
Summer 2021
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 522Literacy/Biliteracy Developmnt
Spring 2021
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 413Language Arts in BLE/ESL Sett
BLE 522Literacy/Biliteracy Developmnt
Fall 2020
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 400Prin of Language Minority Educ
BLE 404Inst Design for CLD Students
Spring 2020
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 413Language Arts in BLE/ESL Sett
BLE 522Literacy/Biliteracy Developmnt
Fall 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 400Prin of Language Minority Educ
Spring 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
BLE 561Parent Involvement in Language
Honors / Awards: 

2017  C. Wright Mills Book Award Winner for “Juárez Girls Rising: Transformative Education Times of Dystopia” 

2017  American Educational Studies Association Critics’ Choice Award for book, “Juárez Girls Rising: Transformative Education in Times of Dystopia”

2017  National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship

2017  Dean’s Office, College of Education, University of Texas at Austin: Summer Research Award

2015  American Association of University Women, American Fellowship/Publication Grant

2014  American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education Faculty Fellow

Professional Associations: 

American Anthropological Association

-Council of Anthropology and Education 

American Educational Research Association

-Bilingual Research SIG

-Critical Educators for Social Justice SIG

Mujeres Activas en Letras y Cambio Social