Rachel Horst, PhD

About me

I am a literacy scholar and educator, holding a doctoral degree from the University of British Columbia. My work explores the intersection of creative and digital arts-based research, innovative pedagogies for future literacies, and the evolving landscape of meaning-making in our digitally saturated world. My research and teaching focus upon equitable, decolonizing, and relational approaches that engage with the potential of digital tools and technologies, including critical AI, to foster transformative learning experiences and deepen understanding.

Through my research, I investigate the confluence of digital and technological literacies, the design of engaging online learning environments, and creative practices for cultivating future literacies. I employ creative methods and data representation to bridge the gap between literacies scholarship and pedagogical practice.

I continue to work on a variety of projects including research and pedagogical praxis with the PhoneMe platform for sharing multimodal place based poetry. Multiple papers are now associated with this research, and we are eager to continue inquiring into the platform as a meaningful digital place-based educational intervention. If you are interested, check out my poems – Home and Run – and consider joining our growing poetic community!

I am a core researcher of Systems Beings Lab an interdisciplinary research team, seeking to co-create and foster a systems approach to complexity, responding to research areas, such as living ecologies, AI, research design, integrative sciences, and educational systems, both within and beyond the university.


Before pursuing my doctoral degree I was a secondary school teacher, working in the remote Indigenous community of Bella Bella, BC, and at the alternative school on the traditional territory of the Shishalh peoples on the Sunshine Coast, BC. My teaching practice continues to be informed by my work with youth outside of mainstream contexts, exploring creative technologies for sharing alternative stories of selves and futures in and for troubled times.

I currently teaching in the Masters in Education Technology Program at the University of British Columbia.

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