Gina Shaffer

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(949) 582-4544
English Compositon Instructor
Liberal Arts
Saddleback College

Dr. Gina Victoria Shaffer joined the English Department at Saddleback College in August 2010. Before starting her teaching career at Saddleback, she worked as a full-time member of the UCLA Writing Programs faculty from 2002-2010.  Her teaching specialties include composition, literature, creative writing, journalism, and creative nonfiction.  In 2002, Dr. Shaffer earned a Ph.D. in English, specializing in Renaissance literature, at UC Irvine.  Her doctoral dissertation focuses on domestic violence in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English drama. In addition to narratives of violence, her teaching and research interests include gender studies, immigration and exile, the effects of technology on relationships and identity, British and Latin American literature, and contemporary drama.

Before entering graduate school, Dr. Shaffer taught journalism courses, part-time, at California State University, Northridge, and UCLA Extension. She previously worked full-time as a staff writer for the Los Angeles Daily News, the Miami Herald, and the Orange County Register.  In addition, she has been a theater critic for Los Angeles-area publications and a website focused on arts coverage.  Dr. Shaffer is also a playwright whose works have been performed on stages throughout Southern California and off-Broadway. Her one-act drama War Spelled Backwards was published in The Literary Experience, an anthology of literary works being used in college English classes.  


  • B.A., English, University of Southern California
  • B.A., Journalism, University of Southern California
  • M.A., English, University of California, Irvine
  • Ph.D., English, University of California, Irvine



  • Faculty Professional Development Award, UCLA, 2008-2009
  • University of California President’s Dissertation Year Fellowship, 2001
  • Tomoko Chino Graduate Award in English Literature, UC Irvine, 2000-2001



  • "Hatuey, the Iconic Chief: The Commodification of a Cuban Hero,” MLA Convention, Los Angeles, January 2011
  • “Cross-Generational Currents: Narratives of Gen Y Writers,” Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC), San Francisco, March 2009
  • "Reading Habits and Writing Practices in an Electronic Habitat," The Future of Writing conference, UC Irvine, November 2008
  • “Virtual Writing and the Transformation of Identity,” Journal of Teaching Writing 22.1 (2005): 107-117.