Rhetoric of health and medicine, experience architecture, community literacy, technical and professional writing, feminist and activist research methodologies
Dawn is a community-engaged action researcher, and partners with nonprofit, government, and healthcare organizations to improve the design of communication and improve the coordination of patient care. Dawn's research lies at the intersection of rhetoric, law, and policy, having previously served as a federal law clerk and lawyer with legal aid societies and other nonprofit organizations. In 2016-2017, Dawn was Faculty Fellow at the Sparrow Health Systems/MSU Center for Innovation and Research at Sparrow Hospital, where she continues to work with healthcare professionals on a variety of projects involving innovation of healthcare service delivery, communication practices, and information technology.
PhD, Rhetoric, Composition, and Linguistics. Arizona State University. 2015.
JD, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law. 2002.
BA, History. Wake Forest University. 1999
Opel, D., Abbott, C., & Hart-Davidson, W. (2018). Toward an encounter team model of clinical project management: A needs analysis in a family health center. Technical Communication, 65(2), 181-193.
Opel, D. (2018). What is “Obamacare”?: Health literacy, e-commerce, and The Affordable Care Act’s online content. Communication Design Quarterly, 6(1), 16-25.
Opel, D. (2017). Ethical research in health 2.0: Considerations for scholars of medical rhetoric. In J. B. Scott & L. Meloncon (Eds.), Methodologies for the rhetoric of health & medicine. Routledge.
Opel, D. (2016). Designing online resources for safety net providers: Users’ needs and the Evidence-based Medicine paradigm. Communication Design Quarterly, 4(3), 35-45.
WRA 878: Composition Studies: Issues, Theory, and Research
WRA 491: Medical Rhetoric and Science Writing
XA 333/AL 333: Researching Experience
WRA 331: Writing in the Public Interest
Member, Board of Directors, Coalition for Community Writing
Co-PI, Humanities Without Walls, "The Building Healthcare Collectives Project"
Food@MSU Seed Grant Researcher
Affiliate, Digital Humanities @ MSU