Alexandra Catá is a PhD Student in North Carolina State University’s Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media program focused on intersections between technical communication and video game studies and design through materality and user experience, such as menu and navigation design; internal game developer communication practices; and the discursive relationship of game developers, content creators, and players. Her research is informed by her previous experiences as a technical communication practitioner and likes to focus on projects that help bridge gaps between academia and industry.
Alexandra has been a member of the Society for Technical Communication (STC) since 2014. She has previous industry experience as a Sr Technical Writer working for Omnicell, Inc. and SAIC in software development, hardware development, IT, project management, cyber security, and defense. Currently, she is a part-time Technical Writer at Epic Games writing user-end documentation for Unreal Engine.
Refereed Journal Articles
“Intelligent Algorithms: Evaluating the Design of Chatbots and Search.” Authored with Nupoor Ranade. Technical Communication. Forthcoming in May 2021.
Catá, A. (2020). “Convergence of Rhetoric, Labor, and Play in the Construction of Inactive Discourses on Twitch”. Special issue of Journal of Digital Culture and Society: Laborious Play and Playful Work 1, Vol 5 (1).
“Continuing the Conversation: Leveraging Platforms for Marginalized Voices in Esports.” Submitted for ESC 2019 in Irvine, CA and published by ETC Press. 2019.
“Boundary of Content Ecology: Chatbots, User Experience, Heuristics, and Pedagogy.” Submitted with Huiling Ding and Nupoor Ranade for SIGDOC 2019 in Portland, OR. 2019.
Catá, A. (2020). Book Review: Gaming Masculinity: Trolls, Fake Geeks & the Gendered Battle for Online Culture. Critical Studies in Media Communication, Vol 37 (3). https://doi-org.prox.lib.ncsu.edu/10.1080/15295036.2020.1773014
Catá, A. (2020). Book Review: The Big Nine: How the Tech Titans and Their Thinking Machines Could Warp Humanity. Journal of Business and Technical Communication, Vol 34 (3). https://doi.org/10.1177/1050651920910152
“Curiosity.” Keywords in Design Thinking: A Primer for Makers, Designers, & Technical Communication. Ed. Jason Tham. (Forthcoming).
Manuscripts in Submission
“Reorienting Menus as Gameplay.” With Matthew Schmalzer. Submitted to eludamos.
Playing with Usability: Why Technical Communicators Should Examine Mobile Games. Master’s Thesis submitted in 2017 to the University of Central Florida. Orlando, FL.
Service to Profession
Graduate Student Representative to the Council of Play and Game Studies (CPGS), 2020-Present
Press Start Journal Editorial Board Member, 2019-Present
CRDM Student Association English Representative to the Program Administration 2020-2021
CRDM Student Association Secretary, 2019-2020
- “Git Rid of Git Gud: Continuing Discussions Advocating for Game Accessibility.” Paper accepted for Computers and Writing 2020 in Greenville, NC. 2020. (Cancelled due to COVID-19).
- “Addressing Problems of User Advocacy from Practice to Pedagogy.” Paper accepted for ATTW 2020 in Milwaukee, WI. 2020. (Cancelled due to COVID-19).
- “Continuing the Conversation: Leveraging Platforms for Marginalized Voices in Esports.” Paper presented at the Esports Conference 2019 in Irvine, CA. 2019.
- “Support Chatbot Usability and Design.” Paper presented at SIGDOC in Portland, OR. 2019.
- “What’s the Big Deal about Ninja? A Starting Point for Examining Rhetorical Power on Twitch.” Paper presented at Pop Culture Association Conference in Washington, D.C. 2019.
- “How to Get 3 Stars: What we can learn from Mobile Game Design.” Presented in 2018 at the Society for Technical Communication Summit. Orlando, FL.
- “Exploring Female Bodies on Twitch: Fragmentation and Commodification of Women’s Bodies.” Presented in 2017 at the University of Central Florida’s English Symposium. Orlando, FL.
- “Wild About Disney: Examining the Usability of Disney’s Safety Information Online.” Presented in 2015 at the Florida College English Association, St. Petersburg, FL.
B.A. English in Literature and Film University of Florida 2011
M.A. English in Technical Communication University of Central Florida 2017