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Carlos Casanova

Carlos Casanova

Postdoctoral Research Associate, Rob and Melani Walton National Sustainability Teachers’ Academy, School of Sustainability

School of Sustainability
Arizona State University
PO Box 875502
Tempe, AZ 85287-5502


  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, Rob and Melani Walton National Sustainability Teachers’ Academy, School of Sustainability


Carlos R. Casanova is a postdoctoral research associate with the School of Sustainability and the Rob and Melani Walton National Sustainability Teachers Academy at ASU. Guided by nearly a decade of professional work with historically marginalized social groups in community-based organizations, Carlos’ questions about education and society often focus on social justice, youth activism, healing, pedagogy and curriculum, and power, privilege, and oppression.

Carlos is interested in (Un)documented Latinx youth ideology (e.g., ideas, attitudes, and beliefs) development. His focus is on ideologies promoted in public education and the impact they have on behavior. He also explores how social practices critique, transform, and construct ideologies. His three-year critical ethnography dissertation in social and cultural studies of education is titled “(Un)documented Midwest Latinx youth resistance towards politics of immigration and education.” His research offers a critical youth development model and a pedagogy he calls, “humanizing pedagogy of knowledge and healing.” This youth development model and pedagogy can be used by youth educators, advocates, and researchers interested in developing and supporting (Un)documented Latinx youth social activism and well-being. His research found that culturally- relevant films and social activism support the transformation of ideologies promoted in schools. His study also found social activism can be both empowering and traumatic. He argues healing practices need to be offered to support (Un)documented Latinx youth.

Social and education injustice has always driven Carlos’ work, starting as a youth development specialist in Kalamazoo, Michigan, to working with community members as an evaluation specialist for a parent/school partnership in San Antonio, Texas. Before ASU, Carlos was a Team Leader at Al Éxito, a Latinx community youth organization, as well as an Adjunct Instructor in the Sociology Department at Des Moines Community College and a Graduate Teaching Assistant at Iowa State University in the School of Education where he taught social justice education courses. Carlos continues to serve as a mentor to youth and community members.


  • PhD, Education, Iowa State University, 2019
  • Education for Social Justice Certificate, Iowa State University, 2017
  • MS, Sociology, The University of Texa-San Antonio, 2013
  • BS, Family Studies and Sociology, Western Michigan University, 2007

Journal Articles


Casanova, C. R. 2018. “You trying to make me feel stupid or something?”: Countering dehumanization of Latin@ youth through a liberating pedagogy of praxis. Journal of Latinos and Education DOI: 10.1080/15348431.2018.1426466. (link )