Gardner received a B.A. in University Studies from Brigham Young University in 1975, and an M.A. in Anthropology from the State University of New York, Albany (SUNY) in 1978. From 1978–80, Gardner continued at SUNY, completing all the course work, but not exams or a dissertation, toward a Ph.D. in Mesoamerican ethnohistory.
In Mesoamerican studies, Gardner has published on classical Nahuatl kinship terminology, ethnohistoric investigation of Coxoh in southern Mexico, and the Aztec Legend of the Suns. He has published with the New World Archaeological Foundation and the Institute for Mesoamerican Studies.
Gardner lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Gardner has published widely on the Book of Mormon and its possible geographical settings. He has often written for the FARMS Review of Books and has presented in the conferences of the Foundation for Apologetic Information & Research (FAIR) during 2000–4, and 2008. In 2007 he presented on "DNA and the Book of Mormon" to the Book of Mormon Archaeological Forum.
Gardner is the author of Second Witness: Analytical & Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon (ISBN 1589580478), published by Greg Kofford Books in 2007. This six-volume commentary on the Book of Mormon focuses on its spiritual, theological, cultural, textual, and historical context. For years much of this work was presented online as The Multi-dimensional Commentary on the Book of Mormon, which Gardner further revised for publication and took offline.
- Campbell, Lyle; Ventur, Pierre; Stewart, Russell; Gardner, Brant (1978). Bibliography of Mayan Languages and Linguistics. Publication. 3. New York: State University of New York at Albany, Institute for Mesoamerican Studies. ISBN 094204102X.
- Campbell, Lyle; Gardner, Brant (1988). "Coxoh". The Linguistics of Southeast Chiapas, Mexico. Papers of the New World Archaeological Foundation. 50. Provo, Utah: New World Archaeological Foundation, Brigham Young University. pp. 315–38.
- Gardner, Brant (1975). Mecayotl and Mexicayotl : The Role of Kinship in Nahua Society (M.S. Anthropology thesis).
- ——. "A Structural and Semantic Analysis of Classical Nahuatl Kinship Terminology". Estudios de Cultura Nahuatl. 15: 89–124.
- —— (March 1986). "The Christianization of Quetzalcoatl: A History of the Metamorphosis". Sunstone. Vol. 10 no. 11. Salt Lake City, Utah: Sunstone Education Foundation. pp. 6–10.
- —— (1986). "The Aztec 'Legend of the Suns': A Multi-Dimensional Approach to the Ethnohistory of Myth". In Gary Gossen (ed.). Symbol and Meaning Beyond the Closed Community. New York: Institute for Mesoamerican Studies, State University of New York, Albany. pp. 19–34. ISBN 0-942041-10-0.
- —— (1997). "Quetzalcoatl's Fathers: A Critical Examination of Source Materials". AZTLAN E-Journal. John W. Hoopes, University of Kansas. Archived from the original on 2009-06-26.
- —— (2004). "An Exploration in Critical Methodology: Critiquing a Critique". FARMS Review. Provo, Utah: Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies. 16 (2): 173–223.
- —— (2007). Second Witness: Analytical and Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon. [six volumes]. Salt Lake City, Utah: Greg Kofford Books. ISBN 9781589580473.
- —— (2011). The Gift and Power: Translating the Book of Mormon. Greg Kofford Books. ISBN 9781589581319.
- —— (2015). Traditions of the Fathers: The Book of Mormon As History. Greg Kofford Books. ISBN 9781589586659.
- "Church History Catalog". The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- "Alumni Address List". Mision de Espana. Spain Madrid Mission Alumni. Archived from the original on 2003-06-27. Retrieved 2009-07-15.
- Gardner, Brant. "Academic Vita". Brant Gardner's Page. Archived from the original on 2002-04-19. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Gardner, Brant (September 2002). "Too Good to be True: Questionable Archaeology and the Book of Mormon" (PDF). FAIR Papers. Mesa, Arizona: Foundation for Apologetic Information & Research. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- "Brant Gardner". Authors. The Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- "Brant Gardner fireside". LDS Mormon Forums. November 23, 2008. Archived from the original on July 21, 2011. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- "FAIR Conference Speakers". Foundation for Apologetic Information & Research. Retrieved 2009-01-15.
- Moore, Carrie A. (October 23, 2007). "DNA claims rebutted on Book of Mormon". Deseret Morning News. Salt Lake City, Utah. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- "Introduction to "Second Witness" with Brant Gardner". Life On Gold Plates. September 3, 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-14.