Crystal Sands

Contributing Faculty
No Specific College Affiliation
Academic Skills Center

Crystal Sands is an adjunct faculty member teaching writing, reading, and literacy classes at Walden University. She holds a PhD in Rhetoric from Texas Woman's University and has been teaching college-level writing for more than 20 years. She has experience in a wide variety of academic roles and has served as a writing tutor, writing program director, and writing center director. She won more than 10 national awards in online education for her work on a major open-source writing project. She currently teaches as an adjunct and works as a freelance writer for magazines and books. She has published over 20 reference articles, three textbooks, and a collection of essays. Her research interests include writing process theory, writing pedagogy, and student confidence in writing.

Courses Taught

CAEX 6050 - Graduate Writing I

CAEX 6060 - Graduate Writing II

CAEX 6100 - Critical Thinking for Social Change

CAEX 6300 - Reading Techniques for Graduate Study


PhD, Texas Woman's University

Master's, Texas Woman's University

BA, Texas Woman's University

Public Service

Global Society of Online Literacy Educators, Committee Member -

Awards / Honors

USDLA Best Practices for Distance Learning Course Design, United States Distance Learning Association, 2015

ITC Outstanding Use of New Technology, Instructional Technology Council, 2015

J. Dean Bishop Award for Writing Instruction, , 2002


Sands, C. (2017). Rubrics Are Bad/Rubrics Are Good: The Value of Rubrics in Writing Instruction.

Sands, C. (2019). Critical Essays on the Life and Work of Tom Petty.

Sands, C., Greshman, M. (2007). Education Matters.


Sands, C. (2014). A Journey Toward Open Access Multimedia Writing Support. College Composition and Communication

Sands, C., Condon, W. (2014). Why Teach Writing. Excelsior College

Sands, C. (2016). Writing Across the Disciplines: Helping Students and Faculty. Southern New Hampshire University

Sands, C. (2014). Creative Use of Technology in the Writing Lab. International Writing Center Association