What Happens When Students Set Their Own Goals

About a month into last semester, I asked my students to evaluate their individual progress in our composition class and then compile a list of four writing goals that they want to accomplish by the end of the semester. The results of this exercise have made me permanently rethink the way I teach writing. First, let … Continue reading

Using Blogs for Collaborative Learning

It’s a cliché, but for good reason: the best way to understand something is to try to do it yourself. So when I created a class—“Minor Genres with Major Impact”—that examined five subgenres from a wide variety of historical time periods, I decided to ask students to write within each subgenre, then analyze their own … Continue reading

Let’s Talk about Writing: #AcWriMo

 I love a challenge, especially a really difficult one, so when I heard that the month of November is #AcWriMo (Academic Writing Month)— a take-off on November also being a “novel writing month”—I knew I wanted to participate. Actually, I’m a little surprised that I hadn’t discovered this productivity drive before. Although I doubt I will be … Continue reading

Friending Aristotle: Nicomachean Ethics Meets Facebook

“Based on your interpretation of Nicomachean Ethics and Aristotle’s views on friendship, what do you believe Aristotle would think of facebook?” This was the gist of the question I asked my students to explore in their first writing assignment for our class: “Friends and Frienemies: Representations of Complicated Friendships.”  Now you might be wondering “Aristotle”? … Continue reading