Quilt/cARTography: Using Craftivism to Explore Food Insecurity on a College Campus


  • Allison Ray Reagan Texas Woman's University




arts-based pedagogy, embodied craft, quilting as a research metaphor, undergraduate social statistics education


Quilt/cARTography emerged from an arts-based inquiry method for research dissemination. I used quilt-making as an embodied craft and metaphor to illustrate how crafting research is similar to piecing together neighborhood food environment data in an undergraduate social statistics course. As an innovative pedagogical tool, cARTographical quilts transform data into accessible tactile mediums that cross disciplinary boundaries and educational levels to explore hunger on a college campus.

Author Biography

Allison Ray Reagan, Texas Woman's University

Allison Ray Reagan is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Sociology and Social Work at Texas Woman’s University in Denton, Texas. Her research focuses on Sociology of Health and Illness (food insecurity) and Sociology of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (arts-based-pedagogy, educational inequities and instructional interventions).


Allen, R. A., Folkhard, A., Lancaster, G. A., Sherlock, C., & Abram, B. (2010). Statistics for the biological and environmental sciences: Improving service teaching for postgraduates. ICOTS8 [Invited Paper]. Retrieved from https://icots.info/icots/8/cd/pdfs/invited/ICOTS8_7E3_ALLEN.pdf

Ausband, L. (2006). Qualitative research and quilting: Advice for novice researchers. The Qualitative Report, 11(4), 764-770. Retrieved from http://nsuworks.nova.edu/tqr/vol11/iss4/8

Chaparro, M. P., Zaghloul, S., Holck, P., & Dobbs, J. (2009). Food insecurity prevalence among college students at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa. Public Health Nutrition 12(11), 2097-2103.

Coleman-Jensen, A., Nord, M., & Singh, A. (2013). Household food security in the United States in 2013. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service (Economic Research Report. ERR-155.) Retrieved from http://www.ers.usda.gov/publications/err-economic-research-report/err155.aspx

Denzin, N. K., & Lincoln, Y. S. (Eds.). (1999). The SAGE handbook of qualitative research (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Dubick, J., Mathews, B., & Cady, C. (2016). Hunger on campus: The challenge of food insecurity for college students (Research Report). Retrieved from http://studentsagainsthunger.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Hunger_On_Campus.pdf

Eisenmann, J. C., Gundersen, C., Lohman, B. J. Garasky, S., & Stewart, S. D. (2011). "Is food insecurity related to overweight and obesity in children and adolescents? A summary of studies, 1995-2009. Obesity Reviews 12(1):73-83.

Elliot, H., Ryan, J., & Hollway, W. (2012). Research encounters, reflexivity and supervision. International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 15(5), 433-444. doi:10.1080/13645579.2011.610157

Frankfort-Nachmias, C., & Leon-Guerrero, A. (2018). Social statistics for a diverse society (8th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Gallegos, D., Ramsey, R., & Ong, K. (2014). Food insecurity: Is it an issue among tertiary students? Higher Education 67(5): 497-510.

Griffin, A., Gruver A., Dutton J. A., College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, & The Pennsylvania State University. (n.d.). GEOG 486: Cartography and visualization [Courseware module] Penn State’s College of Earth and Mineral Sciences’ OER Initiative. Retrieved from https://www.e-education.psu.edu/geog486/node/1858

Gullion, J. S., & Shaefer, L. (2017). Arts-based research in sociology, anthropology, and psychology. In P. Leavy (Ed.), The handbook of arts-based research (Chapter 27). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Kellner, D. (1999). Theorizing McDonaldization: A multiperspectivist approach. In B. Smart (Ed.), Resisting McDonaldization (pp. 186-206). London, UK: Sage.

Koelsch, L. E. (2012). The virtual patchwork quilt: A qualitative feminist research method. Qualitative Inquiry, 18(10), 823-829. doi:10.1177/1077800412456957

Leavy, P. (2015). Method meets art: Arts-based research practice (2nd ed.). New York, NY: The Guilford Press.

Lynch, H. L., & Fisher-Ari, T. R. (2017). Metaphor as pedagogy in teacher education. Teaching & Teacher Education, 66, 195-203.

Maroto, M. (2013). Food insecurity among community college students: Prevalence and relationship to GPA, energy, and concentration (Doctoral dissertation, Morgan State University). Retrieved from https://forestoftheraineducation.weebly.com/uploads/3/5/8/2/3582998/dr._maya_maroto.pdf.

McMillan, E. (2016). Food insecurity touches 38% of Acadia students, survey finds. CBC News. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/food-insecurity-university-students-1.3468743

Miles, M. B., Huberman, A. M., & Saldana, J. (2014). Qualitative data analysis: A methods sourcebook (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Mol, A. (2002). The body multiple: Ontology in medical practice. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Mouraz, A., Pereira, A. V., & Monteiro, R. (2013). The use of metaphors in the process of teaching and learning in higher education. International Online Journal of Educational Sciences, 5(1), 99-110.

Navaneedhan, C. G. (2017). Skill based teaching: Learning science implementing metaphorical thinking. Journal of Computers in Mathematics & Science Teaching, 36(4), 351-360. doi:10.13140/RG.2.1.2635.4089

Orszag, J. M., Orszag, P. R., & Whitmore, D. M. (2001). Learning and earning: Working in college. Upromise. Retrieved from https://www.brockport.edu/career01/upromise.htm

Patton-López, M., Daniel, M., López-Cevallos, F., Cancel-Tirado, D. I., & Vazquez, L. (2014). Prevalence and correlates of food insecurity among students attending a midsize rural university in Oregon. Journal of Nutrition Education & Behavior 46(3): 209-214.

Ray, A. (2015). Food access on campus: A place based socio-spatial method to measure structural barriers within the campus food environment (Master’s thesis, Texas Woman’s University). Retrieved from https://twu-ir.tdl.org/handle/11274/8645

Saukko, P. (2000). Between voice and discourse: Quilting interviews on anorexia. Qualitative Inquiry, 6, 229-317.

Savin-Baden, M., & Major, C. H. (2013). Qualitative research: The essential guide to theory and practice. New York, NY: Routledge.

Signor, L., & Moore, C. (2014). Open access in higher education: Strategies for engaging diverse student cohorts. Open Praxis, 6(3), 305-313.

Sommers, R. C. (1997). The quilting bee: A research metaphor. The Qualitative Report, 3(4), 1-3. Retrieved from http://nsuworks.nova.edu/tqr/vol3/iss4/2

Stipek, D. (2006). Relationships matter. Educational Leadership, 64(1), 46-49.

Thapliyal, U. (2014). Perceived quality dimensions in distance education: Excerpts from student experiences. Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education, 15(3), 60-67.

Walker, S., Read, S., & Priest, H. M. (2013). Use of reflexivity in a mixed-methods study. Nurse Researcher, 20(3), 38-43.

Waples, J. A. (2016). Teacher-ready research review: Building emotional rapport with students in statistics courses. Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Psychology, 2(4), 285-293.

Zaenker, J., & Vladis, N. (2017). Feel the heat - A world temperature data quilt. [Quilted climate map]. University of Edinburgh. EDINA.




How to Cite

Reagan, A. R. (2019). Quilt/cARTography: Using Craftivism to Explore Food Insecurity on a College Campus. Art/Research/International:/A/Transdisciplinary/Journal, 4(1), 322–350. https://doi.org/10.18432/ari29390