Tuesday, August 28, 2007

3 Things We Like

In class today (Tuesday 8/28) each pod was asked to discuss, list and present the 3 main things that they liked or looked forward to as they considered the syllabus/course plan, and 3 things they had questions or concerns about. Here's what students thought:
You liked:
  • No quizzes, tests, or exams--this was by far the most popular feature of the class
  • Can miss three classes
  • Participation a big part of grade
  • Whole semester to write the big paper
  • Structured plan
  • Resources such as the Writing Center and tutors
  • Utilizing blogs and the Internet productively
  • Blogs
  • Writing online
  • Will get better at reading and learn more about it
  • Opportunities for group work and interaction with peers
  • Not always a lecture
  • Me! I seem nice, apparently
You had questions about:
  • Amount of reading and writing--this is the most common concern. (Answer: Yes, there is a lot. Look at the calendar and decide whether this is best Thinking and Writing course for you. However, bear in mind that you do not have to memorize the readings, and that most of the blog writing is informal, not requiring multiple revisions.)
  • What will we blog about? (Answer: the assigned readings, mostly)
  • What is the semester writing research project about and how long is it? (Answer: 15-20 pages on a area of interest to you within this topic: How social computing empowers (or fails to empower) women or another marginalized group. Social computing can include blogs, instant messaging, online communities such as Facebook and MySpace, wikis, text messaging, and more. You will learn more about this through the assigned readings.)
  • Where is the Writing Center? (Answer: Blake House[Correction: 81 Blake St. 8/17/07 TM].)
  • Why so many books for an Internet class? (Answer: Because.)
  • Will we use Devil's Highway? (No. There will be an extra-credit opportunity but it is not an integral part of the course plan.)
  • What is a blog? (Short for web log. An online diary or journal, often personal, but often political, academic, or business-oriented.)
  • Semester project topic--too broad? too specific? (Again, if you can't imagine being excited about any aspect of the topic, that's fine, but this might not be the best Thinking and Writing course for you. Consider one more in line with your interests.)
  • How are women and minorities discriminated against online, anyway? (We'll keep talking about the complex question of power, privilege, and access, and the ways in which the virtual world may extend and reinforce social inequities, or may alleviate inequity. Ultimately, this is the question that you will take a stand on and defend in your semester-long writing project.)

2 comments:

Collie Fulford said...

Hi, it's Collie from the Center for Writing. I just want to post a correction about our location, but probably this will be made clear by a visiting tutor anyway.

The Center is at 81 Blake St, but not in Blake House. We're in a little cottage behind the student center. Blake St. is visible in a straight line from the Media Arts Center entrance.

We are looking forward to working with you.

Tracy Mendham said...

Thanks for catching that, Collie! I've corrected the info on the post.