40 Years Teaching College Composition


I’ve been fully retired for a year and a half now, and I deleted all my teaching files a couple of months ago, so I can’t pass along any specific course materials. For Labour day, though, I’m going to share the distillation of my 40 years of teaching college composition and other language skills to college and university students, and my studies on how people learn to write from two advanced degrees in mid and late career.

1. Many community college students come in already resistant to taking English,… Read more 40 Years Teaching College Composition

Avoiding Learning Management Systems

I teach a couple of university courses in communications, and I don’t like to use Learning Management Systems (LMS). They are handy, but I think, especially for communications courses, students need to be learning the possibilities of the web and how to use them for their own purposes.

Now, when I want to give students feedback and marks privately, I want to demonstrate how we can do that outside of using LMSs. So I listen to their assignments (MP3s of brief podcasts posted on blogs on the open web) and I make notes about their strengths and weaknesses.

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Dreaming The Curriculum – A Re-Post from 2006

With the rapidly changing web environment, much writing is ephemeral, and becomes lost in the past. This is a post I think worth re-posting, about the process of creating curriculum. Most of the links no longer work.

From 2006 –

Dreaming the Curriculum: Oral Rhetoric

This past winter term, I taught a course, Oral Rhetoric, a third-year university course, for the second time. The first time, I taught it using two-hour classroom meetings,

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Kindle App Academic Possibilities

After seeing, with some envy, what a colleague could do on her iPad 2, I decided I wanted to find out more about the academic usefulness of what I could do with the books I read on my Kindle app on my Galaxy Tab. I started adding highlights and notes on a book I was currently reading.

  • I held my finger on the text where I wanted to start and a box appeared with the text coloured blue. (It sometimes took a couple of tries to get the exact text.)
  • I continued dragging my finger,

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