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Deborah L. Smith-Shank

Debbie Smith-Shank

Deborah L. Smith-Shank

Professor Emeritus


Areas of Expertise

  • Feminist theory
  • Semiotics
  • Material culture


  • PhD, Indiana University, Art Education/Curriculum & Instruction
  • MS, Indiana University, Art Education
  • BS, Indiana University, Art Education

Deborah L. Smith-Shank is Emeritus Professor and former Chair of the Department of Arts Administration, Education and Policy at The Ohio State University. In addition to AAEP, Dr. Smith-Shank is also Emeritus Professor of Art and Design Education at Northern Illinois University. During her career, she taught art to students at all levels, from pre-school to University. Her research is involved with material culture and social justice examined through semiotic and feminist lenses. She is past-president of NAEA’s Women’s Caucus and LGBTQ Caucus, served on the Executive Board of InSEA for over a decade, and past-president of the Semiotic Society of America. With Karen Keifer-Boyd, PhD, Dr. Smith-Shank was co-founder and co-editor of Visual Culture & Gender, an international, freely accessed, multimedia, online, juried journal. She published and presented her work nationally and internationally and continues to review articles for several scholarly journals. She is currently enjoying retirement, making art and music in Southern California, traveling the world, and taking emeritus classes as a lifelong learner.