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Eric Rackley

Eric Rackley

Associate Professor
Faculty of Education & Social Work, Center for Learning & Teaching

Joseph F. Smith Library, Room 100A


  • Ph.D. University of Michigan (educational studies with an emphasis in literacy)
  • M.Ed. University of Utah (teaching and learning with an emphasis in literacy)
  • M.A. Portland State University (English literature)
  • B.A. Brigham Young University (humanities)

Research Interests

Grounded in theories of literacy, discourse, and motivation, Dr. Rackley’s research examines how experts and novices engage the world through talk and texts. His religious literacies research focuses on the ways religious young people construct meaning of sacred texts, their motivations for reading sacred texts, and how they use language to engage in their religious communities. He also studies the meaning-making practices of religious educators. Dr. Rackley’s disciplinary literacies research looks closely at the specialized practices and approaches used to construct meaning in English related fields, such as English language arts. Together, Dr. Rackley’s religious and disciplinary literacies research helps identify the contours of the work we do to construct meaning for religious and academic purposes. Dr. Rackley publishes in the fields of education, literacy, and religious studies. Prior to his appointment at BYU–Hawaii, Dr. Rackley taught at the University of Michigan and consulted widely with schools and school districts to improve teachers’ and students’ literacy instruction and learning. Before entering academia, Dr. Rackley taught high school English in urban and suburban areas of Utah, California, and Michigan. He is married to Michelle (Jenkins). They have seven children (two girls and five boys). As a family, they enjoy snorkeling, surfing, and exploring the beaches of Hawaii.


  • Education 212: Foundations of Education
  • Education 312: Effective Pedagogy: Teaching in Practice
  • Elementary Education 320: Literacy Instruction for the Emergent Reader
  • Elementary Education 421: Methods of English Language Arts Instruction
  • Secondary Education 350: General Methods for Secondary Teachers
  • Secondary Education 401: Disciplinary Literacy
  • Secondary Education 430: Classroom Management in Secondary Contexts
  • Secondary Education 491: Observation and Practicum (Pre-Student Teaching)
  • Secondary Education 492: Student Teaching

Selected Publications

  • Rackley, E. D. (in press). “Not reading just seems crazy to me”: Religious youths’ textual ideologies of sacred texts.  Language & Literacy.
  • Rackley, E. D. (2023). People, programs, and practices: Religious literacies in the lives of Latter-day Saint young adults. Religious Education, 118(1), 54-68.  
  • Rackley, E. D. (2022). Latter-day Saint young adults’ motivations for religious literacy. Journal of Research on Christian Education, 31(3), 319-338.  
  • Rackley, E. D. (2022). An ethos of struggle: Literary novices’ challenges with literature. Ubiquity: Journal of Literature, Literacy, and the Arts, 9(1), 33-64.  
  • Rackley, E. D. (2022). “It makes a difference in my life”: Young adults’ motivations for reading sacred texts. Journal for the Academic Study of Religion, 35(3), 1-23.
  • Juzwik, M. M., LeBlanc, R. J., Dávila, D., Rackley, E. D., & Sarroub, L. K. (2022). Spiritual and religious meaning making in language and literacy studies: Global perspectives on teaching, learning, curriculum, and policy. English Teaching: Practice and Critique, 21(3), 225-237.
  • Rackley, E. D. & Strain, R. K. (2022). Religious literacy practices for young readers. Religious Educator 23(1), 51-72.
  • Rackley, E. D. (2022). A comparative scripture-reading analysis of Latter-day Saint experts and novices. International Journal of Christianity and Education 26(1), 32-49.
  • Rackley, E. D. (2021). Literary scholars’ disciplinary literacy orientations. Language & Literacy, 23(3), 85-105. 
  • Rackley, E. D. (2021). “Blessings and friends and knowledge”: Environmental motivations for religious literacy. Religious Education, 116(2), 101-115.
  • Rackley, E. D. (2020). Reading sacred texts: A qualitative study of religious educators’ literacy processes. Journal of Research on Christian Education, 29(3), 236-258.
  • Rackley, E. D. (2020). “It is for everything”: Religiosocial discourse experiences of Methodist youth. Journal of Research on Christian Education, 29(1), 1-17
  • Rackley, E. D. (2018). Religious literacies as social practice: A Latter-day Saint perspective. Religious Educator, 19(3), 57-73.
  • Rackley, E. D., & Hilton, J. (2018). Principles and practices for motivating youth for scripture literacy. Religious Educator, 19(1), 119-137.
  • Rackley, E. D. (2018). Reading for understanding: Methodist youths’ shared scripture reading practices. International Journal of Christianity & Education, 22(1), 39-54
  • Rackley, E. D. (2017). Scripture reading practices of Methodist youth. Religious Education, 112(2), 136-148
  • Rackley, E. D. (2016). Religious youths’ motivations for reading complex, religious texts. Teachers College Record, 118(11), 1-50.
  • Rackley, E. D. (2016). Developing scripture literacy: What good scripture readers know and do. Religious Educator, 17(3), 13-27
  • Rackley, E. D., & Kwok, M. (2016). “Long, boring, and tedious”: Youths’ experiences with complex, religious texts. Literacy, 50(2), 55-61
  • Rackley, E. D. (2016). Latter-day Saint youths’ construction of sacred texts. Interpreter: A Journal of Mormon Scripture, 19, 39-65.
  • Rackley, E. D. (2015). How young Latter-day Saints read the scriptures: Five profiles. Religious Educator, 16(2), 129-147
  • Rackley, E. D. (2014). Scripture-based discourses of Latter-day Saint and Methodist youths. Reading Research Quarterly, 49(4), 417-435.
Teacher Education Program Secondary Education Program