Apr
2017

research fellow

So, yeah…to update the world on my post from nearly 6 months ago, I didn’t get that sabbatical. Once again I was ranked in the top 10 but the university could only afford 7. Or 8? I can’t remember now.

However, I did turn that sabbatical application around into a Faculty Senate-sponsored Research Fellow course release. And that I got!

What does that mean? Well, combined with my course release for being Program Director, it translated into only teaching 2 classes. And both are online!  So I’m referring to this semester as my “fake sabbatical.” I will admit that I’m about a month behind on certain projects because I was struck with a really bad pneumonia for all of December [CHRISTMAS WAS CANCELLED], but since late-January I have been crazy productive.

Editors have been contacted, CFPs have been answered, IRB paperwork has been filed, and collaboration is happening!

In fact, I’ve lined up so many projects beyond the one I initially proposed that I applied for another Research Fellow course release for Fall 2017 and got that too!

Here’s some of that application so you can get a better sense of the work I’m doing and how timely it all is:

Since my hire at UW-Stout, I have established a well-regarded record of publications and conference presentations on the topic of social media. As a current research fellow, I have used the first few weeks of this Spring 2017 semester to re-prioritize this scholarship and have already communicated with three sets of editors—one for the Voices from the Floodzone manuscript I originally proposed, and the others for a book chapter and journal article[1], both of which explore online identity.

All of these projects rely on virtual ethnographic methods and prioritize public writing spaces such as blog posts, Facebook feeds, and Twitter timelines; however, as the authors of Digital Research Confidential have noted: “Because the digital environment for scholarship is constantly evolving, researchers must sometimes improvise, change their plans, and adapt” (Hargittai and Sandvig). For example, in my research fellow proposal last semester, when describing my book project as one “that will provide a new perspective on the use of web 2.0 technologies during and after times of disaster,” I offered statistics that supported the observation that “The share of Americans for whom Twitter and Facebook serve as a source of news is continuing to rise” (Barthel, Shearer, Gottfried, and Mitchell). While this was a trend that I saw as positive when it comes to information-sharing at times of crisis, the current proliferation of claims about “fake news” being spread across social media platforms has prompted me to scrutinize citizen journalists’ online activities even more closely. And if I, a seasoned Internet researcher, feel the need to question if my own bias is getting in the way as I analyze my primary sources, shouldn’t our students be taught to do the same?

For this reason, I am requesting a Fall 2017 course release to help me a) finalize my manuscript, Voices from the Floodzone, and b) pursue two projects that have emerged from my continued work on that project:

  1. A book chapter for an edited collection that analyzes the more subjective aspects of “life online.”
  2. A collaboratively authored General Education course proposal on “media literacy.”

[1] Only the book chapter will be discussed in this proposal because the journal article is about fan communities’ practices and interactions via the Tumblr blog platform. I will be meeting with the editors of this special issue of Transformative Works and Cultures at the upcoming Society for Cinema and Media Studies conference in March 2017 to discuss my contribution.

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Oct
2016

Happy in Harvey Hall

FB words

See that big “happy” in the center? I had no idea that would show up as one of my most used words. Unless this goofy word generator thing took into account all the “Happy Birthday” posts I received last month?

But what’s funny is that all weekend I had planned to write a blog post about how happy I’ve been. Want to know the main reason? I was told, based on x-rays, that the bones in my right foot looked like that of an 80-year-old woman!

Yeah, that’s right. The tendons are fine, which I have heard before, but the x-rays showed clear signs of osteopenia. Given how sensitive to touch my ankles still are, it could also be complex regional pain syndrome. Don’t be freaked out by the info on those pages though because the treatment is pretty much everything I’ve been doing already. Even if I never fully regain the former folk dancer spring in my step, if I keep strengthening my muscles and weight-bearing, I’ll maintain what I have.

And something about knowing I’m not one step away from tearing a tendon has totally liberated me! I’m already much more active and independent. I’m kicking ass in both my Pilates and Zumba Toning classes, and hope to finally drop a few of the pounds I picked up during my inactive time.

So that, coupled with a new office in a beautifully renovated historic building, has made the start to this new school year amazing!

Here’s an older video that shows a bit more of the process:

And here’s the view from my new office:

summer view

My online classes are going well and my in-person Digital Humanities class has 11 very smart and creative students in it. Speaking of DH, here’s the finished product of the Harvey Hall game.

My program director work is keeping me busy but that’s to be expected. And in one week I should find out if I’ve been awarded a sabbatical.

My 10-min presentation last week went very well, so here’s hoping I’m ranked high enough to earn one of the seven they’re funding this year. Last year it was half of that, so I’m optimistic. And after a couple of years of very low morale on campus and my personal chronic pain depression, that’s major.

Gonna finish 2016 like a boss!

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Oct
2015

My #NerdConStories Story

#nerdconstories

A post shared by ⚜️Daisy Pignetti ⚜️ (@phdaisy) on

 

I’m trying to remember how I first heard about NerdCon, and I think it was via a visit to Rainbow Rowell’s website in late April. I had just read Fangirl and wanted to see what else she had coming out and if she would be on a book tour doing signings. (I was also only a few weeks into my time in that godawful boot cast, so reading and coloring were major stress relievers. Still are, but that’s for a separate post.)

Fast forward to the big weekend, which far surpassed any expectations. Actually, I don’t know if I had any expectations other than hearing smart people talk about cool stuff. And getting my Rainbow Rowell books signed:

Thank you @rainbowrowellbooks! #nerdconstories #fangirl #meta

A post shared by ⚜️Daisy Pignetti ⚜️ (@phdaisy) on

 

❤️ @rainbowrowellbooks #fangirl #nerdconstories #40

A post shared by ⚜️Daisy Pignetti ⚜️ (@phdaisy) on

 

She’s awesome and I got to tell her how Fangirl inspired me to propose a course on fandom/fan creations/participatory media. But this isn’t a post about that. Believe me, I’ll update you with those specifics once they are written down in complete sentences. Right now I just have a stack of books, a folder with sample syllabi, and a padlet of ideas.

Like I said, I didn’t really go in to NerdCon with specific expectations, but each and every minute in that MSP Convention Center was beyond wonderful:

  • Podcasters, vloggers, artists, and writers, all of whom are fans of the other podcasters, vloggers, artists, and writers there, spoke about why stories matter, the roles of the creators, the different things communities of fans can do, and the need for safe spaces to discuss this kind of stuff.
  • Hilarious things happened: juvenilia, games, mock debates, musical performances.
  • Celebrated authors like John Green, Pat Rothfuss, Rainbow Rowell, Dessa Darling, and Téa Obreht shared their feelings about writing and the other stuff that comes along once your writing takes off. It’s usually good stuff, but there’s tons of bad advice and frustration too. At one point I felt they needed this panel more than we did!

But I NEEDED this weekend too, and that’s what was most unexpected.

It wasn’t the usual academic mumbo-jumbo with which I surround myself. As a tenured professor of English, I obviously love the academic side of things, but this year has been A BEAST. Personally (cue the chronic pain) and professionally (thanks for nothing, Gov. Walker), it’s all I can do to get through the day. Last week, I sketched out my schedule for the week and even wrote down what hour I knew I’d be home so I could turn my brain off and pause the performance that is Dr. Daisy.

I thoroughly enjoy teaching and I’ve got a great group of students this Fall, but sadly I don’t get to spend a lot of time focused on them. I’m in depressing meetings about budget cuts, writing reports to defend the stuff we need, or trying to navigate the wreckage of mistakenly sent emails since a ton of staff have either switched jobs or took the early retirement deal.

I NEEDED this weekend to remind me that smart people who like to read and write and live-tweet exist. I know I have people in my life and on my campus who also like to do those things, but I needed to be literally surrounded by 3,000 strangers who like those things to remember how great that feels. And that all our stories matter.

However, one of those 3,000 people wasn’t a stranger. She was my Digital Humanities student, Sara. I didn’t see her until the very end of yesterday’s events, but I kept up with her tweets all weekend. This one links to her blog post, “What it Feels Like to Be in Your Element,” and the paragraph below totally inspired me to write this post today:

I go to college and I often get wrapped up in the stress (so much stress) that comes with it, like money and classes and decisions about the FUTURE. But being here at Nerdcon, I’m in such a good mental environment. I’m with my people, and it’s the best mini vacation I could have asked for. I’m seeing my heroes discuss topics that resonate so deeply with me, and I feel so light and great. I’m writing this post to remember that feeling and hopefully find a way to reach it again when I’m stressed in the future.

On Sundays like this I can easily slip into a routine of laundry, house cleaning, and Netflix, which invariably leaves this blog neglected. Today, though, my eyes have not left this laptop screen and it’s been all good. I’ve gained some new followers on Twitter, found some great resources for my PCA roundtable on “Shame, Gender, and Cultural Capital: The Problems of Reading and Writing Fan Fiction” like “Why must we hate the things teen girls love?” and “Mental Health Awareness Week 2015: How to Use Your Fangirl Powers to Practice Self-Care,” and have started a Storify to recap my favorite moments from NerdCon. When I’m done with that, I’ll post it here, but right now I’m going to log off and read a book.

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Jul
2015

Program Director-ing

For the past three semesters I’ve been a Program Director. I know some posts have mentioned that, but because I initially took on the responsibility for a colleague while he was on sabbatical, it felt temporary. He came back and then left again, so taking over a second time means I finally know what I’m doing. 🙂

Although the on-campus Professional Communication & Emerging Media program has about 130-150 students in it, I want to focus on the online one since that’s what I’m charged with “growing to a full cohort of 24 students within three years of launch.” We launched in Fall 2014 and enrolled 5 students, but going into Fall 2015 we already have 14 students, with new inquiries coming in each week. I’ve upped the marketing efforts and have a better awareness of the nearby tech schools and UWColleges that can feed in to our program, but this year will be crucial. Here’s more info about our target audience as well as our program objectives:

The potential student demographic has been outlined as follows:

  • Students who complete a two‐year degree at a WI/MN community or technical college and wish to finish a B.S. degree online.
  • Students enrolled in a UW-Colleges campus who wish to pursue a collaborative degree while attending their local campus.
  • Students who did not finish a bachelor’s degree who wish to build marketable skills by combining their professional competencies with communication skills.
  • Students who wish to pursue a bachelor’s degree with no previous college experience.
  • Students currently enrolled in the on-campus PCEM program who wish to complete their B.S. degree 100% online.

Graduates of the PCEM.AC program will demonstrate that they can:

  1. Gauge audience concerns and attitudes
  2. Apply appropriate rhetorical principles
  3. Understand and apply concepts and strategies of global communication
  4. Understand interpersonal, organizational, and intercultural communication within discourse communities
  5. Understand and apply ethical concepts
  6. Apply visual communication strategies
  7. Apply user-centered information design strategies
  8. Apply research techniques
  9. Demonstrate use of audience-appropriate styles
  10. Apply usability strategies
  11. Understand concepts of content management and use content management systems
  12. Write effectively for a variety of audiences, technical and/or generalist, within chosen industry fields.
  13. Apply the concepts of effective communication in their particular field, industry, or specialization.

Today the Stout Online director sent out this “Online College Students 2015: Comprehensive Data on Demands and Preferences” report and while technical and professional communication isn’t listed as a “top” program choice, I’m happy to say we definitely offer students opportunities to jump the other five hurdles.

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Apr
2015

An Update & Advisement Day

It’s been forever since I’ve updated.

Here’s why:

A colleague resigned in January, so I’m back to being the program director for both of our Professional Communication & Emerging Media programs. That’s about 130 students total. I actually enjoy and (dare I say) excel at it, except for the meetings about budget cuts (stupid Scooter).

My teaching schedule changed and some other real life stuff has happened, so I’ve been too busy and/or distracted to update this blog. However, I think all you readers, whoever you may be, know I’m all over social media, now successfully managing 2 Twitter accounts (@phdaisy is a bit more entertainment-driven now but @profpignetti is directed at students & their interests). I’m even paying more attention to LinkedIn. If you’re a PCEM alum or soon to be graduate, join our group!

I’m also still dealing with chronic pain in my right ankle but should know about a surgery option and timeline for healing by the end of next week. Turns out there’s so much scar tissue in my ankle that it’s forming “coalitions.” Who knew?!? I’ve HATED not going to the gym and not teaching Zumba, but I’m staying hopeful that I’ll be back at it in September.

Anyway, back to the good stuff. Our on-campus PCEM program is booming with student achievements, client projects, enrollment numbers, and cool new faculty coming in the Fall. To learn a little more about all of that, check out the presentation I gave at this week’s Advisement Day. See also the obligatory stickered laptop pic:

Fangirling in higher ed

 

I really liked using sway.com to create that presentation. An alum showed it off to my Capstone students and I thought I’d give it a try. What do you think? (Go fullscreen and arrow down to get a better sense of it.)

The online PCEM program is still trying to build enrollment, but I am truly excited about the marketing efforts my student workers and I are putting into place. I started as a Marketing major at Loyola but then switched to English Writing, so here’s my big chance!

So that’s what I’ve been doing all of 2015. I thought the first year of tenure would be a little less intense, but oh well. Seriously though, I’m desperate for things to improve at the UW, even if just for our morale, but I remain dedicated to students. A colleague will take over the on-campus program director role in the Fall, so I’ll have time to get back into my research and possibly apply for a sabbatical.

Woohoo! And here’s to more blogging!

 

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Nov
2014

fun finds for ENGL 121 & 335

I don’t know if it’s the glow of tenure, although I’m totally bogged down with service commitments this semester, but I’m having a great time teaching the Intro to Professional Communication and Critical Approaches to Digital Humanities courses.

Here are some fun finds I’ve been able to share:

On a more serious [or just less silly] note, now that our Digital Humanities [PDF] concentration is a few years old, I have a better handle of what types of texts and exercises we should spend our time on. ENGL 335 is the first course in the DH sequence, so we spend a lot of time defining DH and figuring out how we, at a polytechnic university, can maintain our access to the humanities. Robin Sloan’s Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore has proven to be an excellent introduction to the field and possibilities of DH:

A gleeful and exhilarating tale of global conspiracy, complex code-breaking, high-tech data visualization, young love, rollicking adventure, and the secret to eternal life—mostly set in a hole-in-the-wall San Francisco bookstore.

Finally, central to DH is “open access,” and Amanda Palmer’s “The Art of Asking” TED talk offers real-world examples of crowd funding and trusting the people of the internet to help rather than harm you.

(JZ’s TED talk is a great prequel to her’s too).

There’s always more to share, and I haven’t even started on the new texts I’m using in the graduate course, Communication Strategies for Emerging Media, but that’s a post for another day!

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Oct
2014

Blogging: Becoming Visible and Attracting Audiences

Today I’m presenting at The Teaching Professor Technology Conference in Denver, CO. While I have presented on my use of blogs in the classroom several times over the years (see this Prezi for a precursor to today’s work), this is the first time I’ll be able to share student responses from my Curious Stout Innovator [CSI] project. Also see here for the Blog Rubric I use as well as the ENGL121 Blogging101 assignment itself.

Background:

When I started my doctoral program at the University of South Florida in 2003, I was required to create a blog as part of my Rhetoric and Technology course. That first course influenced my entire program of study, my dissertation project, and my pedagogy. My project for the Curious Stout Innovators [CSI] program illustrates these ongoing efforts.

In the Fall 2012 semester I taught ENGL 335: Critical Approaches to Digital Humanities, the first course offered in the Digital Humanities concentration of the Professional Communication Emerging Media [PCEM] program. The course was a hybrid one that relied on Tegrity to “capture” the face-to-face meetings and share those recordings with the online students. However, to increase student engagement, I asked both groups of students to participate in “virtual Fridays” where they discussed readings and course goals on a WordPress blog, http://engl335digitalhumanities.wordpress.com/.

Some may critique assigned or “forced blogging,” a term defined in 2004 by Dennis Jerz as follows: “Since a ‘real’ weblog is a license to write whatever and whenever you want, an instructor who assigns the topic, frequency, or length of blog entries (in order to facilitate grading) violates the spirit that draws voluntary bloggers to their avocation.” However, this exercise was intended to emulate the burgeoning field of Digital Humanities, which defines itself as a social one composed of people with “a shared interest in texts, and the use of computational technologies to explore and understand them (as opposed to merely creating or distributing them)” (Alvarado).

This first cohort of Digital Humanities students flourished in their “open” posts, the ones that were to draw their classmates’ attention to online artifacts related to course goals; meanwhile, their posts designated to react to the assigned readings lacked originality and often were not even proofread. As such, my work with Renee Howarton in the CSI program initially aimed to create a set of best practices when using the course blog again in the Fall 2013 semester, this time with the added intent of networking with Digital Humanities students at other universities.

Due to lack of enrollment, however, I ended up not teaching ENGL 335 again in Fall 2013. Instead, I was assigned two sections of ENGL 121: Intro to Professional Communication, the first required course all PCEM majors.

Previous instructors of this course have asked students to create blogs, and given my personal experience and research history with blogs, I was excited to include a blogging component and this switch ended up working in my favor. Not only did I have a greater data set, but at the heart of the course was the goal of “understanding how technologies mediate communication.” For freshman and transfer students new to the major, frequent and focused blog writing and commenting upon the writing of others in the class opened their eyes to a new genre, one that offered them the space for much more depth and engagement than other social media profiles, i.e. Facebook statuses and Twitter updates.

As a result, I revised my CSI research project to investigate the extent to which weekly blogging showcased these PCEM majors’ creativity and helped cultivate their professional online presence. For several years now industry and academic experts in the field of technical writing have advised students and young professionals to create and maintain a blog, citing the ways it can help with a job search.

Today’s presentation, see the Prezi and resources that informed it below, shares the details from the project and the data collected, not from students’ individual blog posts, but from responses to the Final Exam Questions. I am pleased to see reflective comments that support my hypothesis that weekly blog writing pushed them to craft and design posts that were both meaningful and professional.

Additional Resources

These videos also help start the discussion on blogs and their history and varied uses:

Hope to see you at my #TPTech14 session later today!

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Feb
2014

Home

I’ve spent the past month writing a book chapter about John Biguenet’s trilogy of plays: Rising Water, Shotgun, and Mold.

I’m also still dealing with my tendinitis issues, the semester started, I started my position as Program Director, and (if you read my previous post) I successfully jumped through the tenure hoop. (That’s my way of saying I’m still writing the chapter. Given all the new meetings and course preps I have on my schedule, I often only get a chance to add new words on the weekends.)

Typically, when I write about Hurricane Katrina I focus on role of the blogs and social media to share stories of the city’s recovery and inspire activism, but for this edited collection I’m returning to my undergrad and literary analysis roots. Coincidentally Biguenet is a Loyola-New Orleans professor and, while I never had the chance to take one of his classes during my years there (BA ’96), I attended a talk of his about “depicting disaster” at an alumni college event a couple years ago, which is what inspired my answer to this CFP (which I now see has been updated).

I’ve really enjoyed selecting scenes from his works but (as is often the case) I also start to spiral down my own rabbit hole of Katrina-specific memories, and re-reading trauma theory to apply doesn’t really help, especially at this time of year when I’m always homesick for Mardi Gras.

This week in my Composition 2 class we will start reading Chris Rose’s 1 Dead in Attic (the books title comes from this column) and based on an entry ticket exercise we completed at the end of last week, it is clear these students know very little about my beloved hometown or the impact of levee breaches. Many were in middle school in 2005 and their only Katrina-specific memories are all tv news related, so I’m looking forward to sharing other texts with them, both print and tv/film.

To start our discussion tomorrow, though, I plan to show Pico Iyer’s TED talk. Our course theme is place and I think this will be the best way to ease us in:

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Sep
2013

Performance Objectives 2013-2014

I’ve still got several posts in DRAFT form, which I will finish this weekend, but I wanted to share this academic year’s “performance objectives” the way I did last year.

 

Teaching

This academic year is a turning point in my career, as I will be filling in for Matt Livesey as Program Director of the Professional Communication and Emerging Media program while he is on sabbatical the Spring 2014 semester.

This impacts my teaching schedule because I will have two new preps: ENGL 121: Introduction to Professional Communication in the Fall semester and ENGL 471: Professional Communication Capstone in the Spring.

So far I still have freshman composition courses on my schedule, with my Fall ENGL 101 course exploring the impact of technology upon one’s literacy, and [if assigned a Spring section] ENGL 102, which will explore the theme of place writing.

This Fall I will lead a single-seat ENGL 480 for Kaitlyn Patrick in order to prepare her for a year-long ENGL 495 Digital Humanities Capstone project.

This summer I began mentoring Lindsey Redenbuagh on her Honors Contract work, a series of movie critiques archived at http://lredenbaugh.wordpress.com/. This work will be finished at the end of the Fall semester.

Regarding my role in the MSTPC program, this Fall I have my usual ENGL 745: Communication Strategies for Emerging Media course and am advising MSTPC student Lisa Topper as she writes her ENGL 735 field project exploring the effect of HTML-formatted process instructions on processor accuracy, speed, and accessibility. I will not be teaching any graduate courses in the Spring, but may still advise students on their field projects if they align with my background in rhetoric and social media.

 

Service

  • CAHSS Representative, Race, Ethnic Studies & Global Perspectives Committee
  • Member, Advanced Writing Committee & Freshman Composition Committee
  • Member, Editorial Board for the eJournal of Public Affairs
  • Member, Editorial Board of Writing Commons

 

Research & Publication

My revised “dissertation to book” proposal, Disaster 2.0: Stories of Ongoing Recovery from the New Orleans Blogosphere, was submitted to the University Press of Mississippi on September 2, 2013.

On September 7, 2013, I received confirmation that my book chapter, “Dramatic ‘Belated Immediacy’ in the works of John Biguenet,” will be included in a 10 Years After Katrina volume.

I have been invited to speak as a Guest Lecturer at UW-Barron County on the topics of New Orleans, Hurricane Katrina, and blogging. The talk will occur October 10, 2013.

I will be leading a roundtable discussion on the topic of “requiring social media in the classroom” at the Association of Internet Researchers conference in Denver, October 25th.

I plan to submit an abstract to the Fitness, Exercise and Physical Culture subject area of the Popular Culture Association national conference. If accepted, I will attend this meeting in April 2014 in Chicago, IL.

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Sep
2012

back to school post

Long time no blog, I know, I know…

After the Spring semester I was exhausted so I didn’t teach this summer [except for working with some thesis-writing grad students] and it made a world of difference on my Fall outlook! There’s so much to catch you readers up on, namely my loss of nearly 25 pounds and new role as a Zumba instructor, but first I thought I would share my Performance Objectives.

I submit these every year to my Department Chair as a way to bring into focus what I intend to achieve during the academic year in terms of my teaching, service and research. Enjoy! [And now you know what keeps me so busy!]

Teaching

  • My ENGL 101 courses, both in the classroom and online, explore the impact of technology, specifically social media, upon our everyday & academic lives. Students are starting the semester by writing technology literacy narratives, will move into readings from their textbook New New Media to create an annotated bibliography that updates the author’s 2008 publication, and then will read the novels Little Brother, Fahrenheit 451 and Feed before writing research papers and creating presentations on the topics of moral responsibility, access to knowledge, privacy, and power, security, and freedom in a post-9/11 America.
  • I’m very excited to be teaching ENGL 335 Critical Approaches to Digital Humanities, the first course offered in the DH concentration of the Professional Communication and Emerging Media program. The course is a hybrid one, so I’m using Tegrity to “capture” the face-to-face meetings and share those recordings with the online students. I’m also asking students to collaborate in writing a manifesto in Google Docs and participate in “virtual Fridays” where the discussion of readings will happen on our course blog. These exercises emulate the field of Digital Humanities, which defines itself as a social one composed of people with “a shared interest in texts, and the use of computational technologies to explore and understand them (as opposed to merely creating or distributing them)” (Alvarado).
  • In ENGL 745, Communication Strategies for Emerging Media, graduate students will contribute to a course blog, write literacy narratives, respond to a midterm exam, and propose then complete a seminar paper. We rely on the following texts from Instructional Resources as well as a long list of PDFs I’ve scanned and uploaded into D2L:  Digital Literacy for Technical Communication, Socialnomics, and Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other.
  • This Fall I am advising MSTPC student Heidi Decker-Maurer as she writes her thesis about images macros and how they address social issues in the age of participatory culture. I am also finishing up work with Carmen Butt whose thesis was on the role of social media in health care institutions.
  • I foresee advising more graduate students in the Spring if their thesis or field projects coincide with the two courses I teach, Rhetorical Theory & Communication Strategies for Emerging Media.
  • I continue to advise students in the B. S. Professional Communication and Emerging Media program.

Service

  • CAHSS Representative, Planning and Review Committee
  • CAHSS Representative, Racial and Ethnic Studies and Global Perspective Curriculum Advisory Committee
  • Member [perhaps Co-Chair this year], Advanced Writing Committee
  • Member, Editorial Board for the eJournal of Public Affairs
  • Member, Editorial Board of Writing Commons
  • Mentor to new hire Kate Edenborg

Research & Publication

  • I submitted a book proposal/dissertation revision plan tentatively titled Disaster 2.0 to the Acquisitions Editor of the University Press of Mississippi. It is with an external reader for a formal review and I should hear back in mid-October.
  • If that book proposal is accepted, I hope to share my experience and advise current doctoral students either has a mentor at the Conference on College Composition & Communication or Computers and Writing conference. Both meetings hold pre-conference “research network forums.”
  • I recently answered a “Literature of Hurricane Katrina” edited collection CFP.
  • I plan to answer the most recent Technoculture CFP as its third issue is focused on “dead, lost, or underused technologies.”
  • Currently I have no conference travel scheduled, but will be proposing to the Popular Culture Association conference in Washington, DC in March 2013 and the Digital Humanities conference in Lincoln, Nebraska in July 2013.
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Feb
2012

#tools4teach

As my previous posts have indicated, February has been a busy month. Thankfully, I did get a chance to put committee work on the back-burner and make it to the Tools for Teaching Northwest Regional Showcase at UW-Eau Claire this past Friday. Looking at the schedule, nearly all of the presenters had the entire hour to themselves to share their ideas, but [and I think it’s because Twitter is so cool] I was notified that my “Teaching with Twitter: 2008-2011” would share a time slot with “The Twitter Project: Twitter & First-Year Seminars” presenter from UW-Superior.

And rather than just split the presentation into a half hour each, Mickey Fitch approached me about organizing things in a way so we could play off the commonalities in our experiences. We emailed and tweeted back and forth, with most of my content coming from the info you can read on the Twitter tab of this website, and she created the Prezi below, something I’ve been wanting to play with for a long time now.

Needless to say, this was a lot of fun and it pushed me to 1) reflect on my use of Twitter for reader responses and 2) reconsider bringing Twitter back into my online courses to create greater “virtual classroom” community. I’m going to try and write up more about this for the launch of Writing Commons, so watch this space for an announcement about that next month.

Til then, I look forward to future collaborations with Mickey and other UW tweetybirds!

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Feb
2012

spring semester stress

When the emails started taking over my life 2 weeks before the Spring semester started, I knew this one was going to be a doozy.

I’m teaching 2 online sections of ENGL 102, 2 sections of ENGL 371 [a rhetoric course to the Tech Comm majors], and 1 online graduate course in Rhetorical Theory, also online. Oh, and I almost forgot to mention I’m directing two thesis projects.

I’m sure there are people who will read this and think that it’s a piece of cake to only have 1 face-to-face class that meets twice a week, but the reality is the more online students you have, the more prep work you have to do and the more emails you get.

But this post really isn’t about teaching. I’m doing a good job replying to discussion board posts and blog posts and grading papers in a timely manner, but I wish I had more time to focus on my teaching, not to mention my research.

The service component of this tenure track job is eating into my time more than I would like. I’m on the department Hiring Committee, chair of the Advanced Writing Committee, member of the Race, Ethnic Studies, & Global Perspectives committee as well as one of two consultants from this committee who helps approves new course proposals regarding our criteria, member of the Program Review Committee, and on the editorial board of two journals. I also have weekly meetings with the Tech Comm program faculty to discuss our growing number of undergrad majors and graduate students who are nearing the end of their program & need thesis or field project directors.

As I write this, I know that I enjoy doing all of these things, due mostly in part to liking everyone I work with, but given that I was passed over for promotion this year, I worry that I need to do even more when I’m pretty much at my breaking point!

 

 

And for some reason what causes me the most anxiety is email. Seeing the number of messages coming in every day gets my heart racing, and not in the good way. Because so many of our online students are working professionals with families, I can’t simply turn off my email at the end of the traditional business day. That’s when they are working on their course work–evenings and weekends. Well, I can turn it off but I feel bad doing so.

But when I was so exhausted on Monday afternoon that I couldn’t even make it out of bed to go to my beloved Zumba & Turbokick classes, I knew I HAD to step away from the laptop, iphone, and ipad. [I’m on my desktop writing this.]

I have a policy in all of my syllabi stating students need to reply to my emails within 48 hours so starting March 1, that’s what I’ll adhere to as well. So that’s that.

Now let me go email all of my students to tell them this…

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Feb
2012

pathos, nostalgia, and don draper

My latest post on the Rhetorical Theory Course Blog:

 

You will hear more about Aristotle’s appeals in future chapters, but if you notice I’ve uploaded a document in D2L that outlines the three nicely. Regarding pathos, or the appeal to our emotions, it states,

Language choice affects the audience’s emotional response, and emotional appeal can effectively be used to enhance an argument.  Indeed, pathos evokes a meaning implicit in the verb ‘to suffer’–to feel pain imaginatively….Perhaps the most common way of conveying a pathetic appeal is through narrative or story, which can turn the abstractions of logic into something palpable and present. The values, beliefs, and understandings of the writer are implicit in the story and conveyed imaginatively to the reader.  Pathos thus refers to both the emotional and the imaginative impact of the message on an audience, the power with which the writer’s message moves the audience to decision or action.

An example that comes to mind immediately is from Mad Men. I shared the link to this video in my comment to Jodee’s post, but wanted to create a separate space for it just in case you miss it there: http://youtu.be/suRDUFpsHus

Don’s entire presentation relies on pathos, beginning with his narrative about working for Teddy and his defining of nostalgia as “the pain from an old wound,” all the while showing slides of his own family and the memories they can now relive via the Kodak Carousel. Rather than distancing himself from a product, he’s thrown his heart into it and it works!

I’ve created a new category called “advertising” since we’re bound to make a number of references to commercials, print, and online ads this semester!

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Feb
2012

Is Blogging Dead?

Cross-posted on the Rhetorical Theory Course Blog

I started to leave a comment to respond to the final statement in Tim’s post, “Blogs have really moved beyond the mindless posts by vain teenagers, and maybe we have Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace (is that even still active anymore?) to thank for that,” but then remembered that at the most recent Computers and Writing conference there was an entire session devoted to this. In essence, the panel, entitled “Is Blogging Dead? Yes, No, Other,” asked if, compared to other social media that have character limits, blogs are now the places for “the longer thoughts,” does anyone post those longer thoughts to blogs anymore since they aren’t likely to receive a response? Implied, too, is does anyone even have longer thoughts anymore? 🙂

It also helps that I’ve had the backchannel Dennis Jerz posted from it open in a Google Chrome tab since last May. I’ll talk more about backchannels and how academics use Twitter or IRC both in the classroom and at conferences another time, but it’s pretty obvious from what you see below that lots of opinions were voiced both in the room and via Twitter and I’m so glad Dennis used Storify to archive that:

Since the conference audience was made up of both bloggers and teachers who ask their students to blog, another point raised was if we assign blogs in a course, is that really blogging since it’s usually for a grade, has assigned word counts, etc. The point being, that’s not organic blogging. It’s not livejournal-esque or diary style.

Here’s my take on what we’re doing in this course blog space: Yes, your posts will receive a grade, but as MSTPC students, I hope you see blogging as an exercise that combines critical thinking with document design since, unlike the discussion forums, you  have more opportunities to react to the readings in a visually appealing way. And if you’re ever confused, please refer to the Blogging 101 handout I’ve created and ask questions!

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Jan
2012

I’ll tumble for ya

As predicted, now that school has started, the gym is even more packed. That leads to hotter and sweatier group fitness classes and, if a certain fan isn’t on, very slippery floors. The past two classes I’ve taken I’ve ended up in my sock feet…but it’s always fun and I love shaking it to various Pitbull songs!

Other than working out, I’ve been busy prepping 4 separate course syllabi & course calendars. I’m also directing two thesis projects, so there’s lots of email on that front.

Quick aside:  Ever since I started teaching online writing courses in 2004, I’ve tried to reduce the amount of email by having a “General Questions” discussion forum. Students can post their questions and I can answer it there for the entire class to see, thus preventing repeat emails. Sometimes, if I’m lucky, another student will answer the question first and thus a community is born! Well, that varies from semester to semester, but this academic year I’ve been particularly impressed by my students’ abilities to rely upon each other for feedback & their appreciation of blogs, Skype, Twitter, and Google DOCs.

OK back to the title of this post.

Wait a second… 😛

In addition to having various WORD documents open while course planning, I’ve recently become obsessed with tumblr. And the cause of that obsession? Sherlock Homes. BBC’s Sherlock to be specific.

I won’t go into how brilliant each episode is or spoil Season 2 for you Americans who haven’t seen it yet [I have my sources], but instead focus on the fandom. The #IBelieveinSherlockHolmes movement has been amazing to watch and what I love about tumblr is that, given I have little time or skills to create my own fan art, I can “reblog” it.

Perhaps that’s lazy (and twitter has been considered blogging for lazy people) but look at the variety of ways the tumblr interface prompts you to post:

If I didn’t already have this blog space, which also has imported all of my USF blog posts from 2005-2008, I would definitely use tumblr as my primary blog. But, for now, this space will be for “longer thoughts” and my tumblr will be for spreading the word that #MoriartyWasReal and #IBelieveinSherlockHolmes!

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Feb
2011

truthy

Let’s try this blogging during the semester again…

This Spring I’m teaching 4 online courses and 1 hybrid, which meets twice a week but video of those meetings is “captured” so I can send a link to the online students. It’s my third time with this system and I think I’m getting it down.

I think.

Instead of assuming student behaviors when finding and viewing the links, I’ve made it clear from the get go that I’m aware my practices might differ from others in the department [many of these students have taken classes that utilize the ECHO captures for a number of semesters]. So in addition to posting the link to the captures under the LINKS tab in D2L, I email them with it as well, offering context for what was covered and what to pay attention to for next time. What’s most important is that they don’t delete these emails! I know it can be annoying to have to look outside of the course management system for stuff, but email isn’t going away as far as I’m concerned, and the more literate one becomes by creating folders, using filters, and flagging “to do” items, the better!

My confidence with teaching this seemingly “split” course has also grown as a result of my Directed Study student’s research project on student and teacher perceptions of the system. Indeed, I’m hyperaware of its ins and outs these days. I have to review and send over his IRB paperwork today too, so let me hurry up with this blog post.

The theme I’ve chosen for this hybrid course, which I neglected to mention earlier is an undergraduate course in Rhetoric/Style/Argument, is truth. As I did last year, I started with showing the SNL clip of John McCain approving ads to get students seeing why so many people define rhetoric in a negative way, as lying, manipulation, etc. But this time I also showed this interview between Stephen Colbert and Sherry Turkle to see if my students could identify the argument(s) AND if they believed there was a clear winner:

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Sherry Turkle
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog Video Archive

I’ve purchased Turkle’s book Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other to be able to review her data and thus assess her longer argument, so I’ll try to post a review of that in a few weeks. While I know she was dealing with the character of Colbert, the first time I watched their interview I felt like he won. What do you think?

And will you leave a comment here, via Facebook, or Twitter rather than come tell me your answer in person? 🙂

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Nov
2010

Life Online

Whenever I start leaving comments on my students’ blogs, it takes much longer than I planned because I start searching for links to share with them.

Recently they were assigned the following under the heading of “AGENCY, AUTHORITY & TRUST”:

• Qualman, E. 2009. Chapter 2 in Socialnomics.
• Paine Schofield, C. B., & Joinson, A. N. (2008). Privacy, trust, and disclosure online. In A. Barak (Ed.), Psychological aspects of cyberspace: Theory, research, applications (pp. 13-31). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
• Albrechtslund, A. (2008) “Online Social Networking as Participatory Surveillance” in First Monday. Available Online: http://firstmonday.org/htbin/cgiwrap/bin/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/2142/1949

Recommended:
• Zittrain, J. “Meeting the Risks of Generativity: Privacy 2.0” in The Future of the Internet & How to Stop It. Available Online: http://yupnet.org/zittrain/archives/20
• Caplan, S. (2005) Social Skill Account of Problematic Internet Use. Journal of Communication 721-730. 55(4)

Their responses to these readings have been great, thoughtful, and engaging, and they made me think of these two videos also on the topic of social networking and digital footprints, one more lighthearted than the other:

I leave you with those for tonight because I’ve got 10 more students’ blogs to read, but wanted to post before I forgot!

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Nov
2010

when it rains…

Final post for the night, I promise!

This one should have been the first because it discusses and then lists all the things that have been keeping me distracted from blogging, but oh well…

Now that I’m past midterm, I have to say that this semester is flying by! October was a blur of grading 40+ freshman papers every week. Yes, I said EVERY WEEK. Silly me thought that repeating the same reader response/research reaction to various chapters in New New Media would be a good idea. I probably should have spaced the first 3 of 4 essays [750-words each] out better, but I was pleased to see the majority of students improve from essay to essay.

What pleased me most were their group presentations and collaboratively written papers. While I think a few students would prefer not to work in groups [I was one of these students as an undergrad], 9/10 of these papers were very well written, fully researched, and properly formatted in APA.

That’s another thing. I’ve switched to using APA style this semester, which has me scrambling to various online resources to double-check everything. Most helpful has been this UW-Madison site and the PDF Documenting Sources in APA Style: 2010 Update

The reasons I switched from MLA to APA are simple: the Learning Community I’m teaching in is linked with an ICT course that already uses APA and the graduate school at UW-Stout requires all Master’s theses to be formatted in APA. Soon we will be ordering all graduate faculty and incoming graduate students hard copies of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th edition, but until then, the online resources will do.

Keep in mind that all of what I just listed about grading was only related to my 2 face-to-face courses. Total, I’m teaching 5 this semester…

My online 101 students also wrote individually-authored researched responses and group papers on New New Media, but that class has dwindled to 13 active participants.

My ENGL-495/directed study student is brilliant–see his blog here. I’ve had the best time creating a reading list for him and seeing his understanding of research methods [particularly for internet-based projects] evolve. You can see from his posts what those readings are, but I’ve got to give shout outs to these two new books: Markham and Baym’s Internet Inquiry: Conversations About Method(2009) and Hargittai’s Research Confidential: Solutions to Problems Most Social Scientists Pretend They Never Have (2009).

I’ve already written about the graduate course this evening, and I do have ideas about incorporating their technology literacy narratives into a journal article to answer this call, but here’s a laundry list of other things that have kept me busy:

  • submitting a proposal to grants.gov for an NEH Summer Stipend {fingers crossed!}
  • flying to NOLA for a 40-hour stay to rejoice in Matthew and Mandy’s wedding
  • attending A Low Key Gathering at the wacky House on the Rock to celebrate 10 years of American Gods
  • attending the e-Citizenship institute in Detroit & ending up on an editorial board for a new ADP initiative e-journal
  • proposing a “Conversation Starter” presentation to Computers and Writing 2011
  • drafting a proposal for this Oxford Internet Institute Symposium on the Dynamics of the Internet and Society with my fav Irishman Daithí Mac Síthigh
  • convincing fellow Tech Comm faculty to road trip to De Pere, WI in June to attend THATCampLAC {Yes, we know we’re not a liberal arts school, but given this meeting’s location and our recent addition of a DH concentration, I think it’s a great opportunity to learn from others who “must build stronger off-campus networks” as well as discuss technology and pedagogy}
  • considering an application to the Institute for the Digital Humanities @ University of Denver

    So yeah, I’ve been busy! And I haven’t even mentioned all the committee work…ugh

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  • Nov
    2010

    something that always makes me smile

    Free books!

    books

    Well, I did earn these.

    I was recently awarded a $100 Emerging Technology grant to explore my use of blogs in the graduate course, ENGL 745-Communication Strategies for Emerging Media. If you recall, I also earned one of these grants to explore using Twitter in ENGL 101-Freshman Composition, with the final report posted on this site under Twitter Research.

    Below are excerpts from my grant application:

    During the Fall 2010 semester I have required my graduate students (ENGL 745-Communication Strategies for Emerging Media) to maintain a blog as a reading journal. I had originally thought to have one course blog where we all contributed, but I realized there may be repeat entries on the assigned readings, so I opted for students to create individual blog spaces so they can share their responses and comment upon each other’s posts. The added value of writing in a public space such as a blog is that students need to consider an audience wider than their instructor and peers.

    Given that our Masters of Science program in Technical and Professional Communication is in its first year, my ultimate intent is for these graduate students to include posts about other courses they are taking this semester and/or continue to blog throughout their time in the program.

    As a blogger, Internet researcher, and teacher, my career is focused on engaging students and remaining relevant. With this said, I hope to draft a chapter-length paper that analyzes the reach of these graduate student bloggers’ public discourse and the evolution of their identities as young academics. Based on their end-of-the-semester reflections, I also plan to speculate my future pedagogical use of a blog space over a D2L-based discussion forum.

    Because I am also a faculty member in the newly revised undergraduate Technical Communication program, this project will greatly aid me when teaching courses devoted to digital humanities, not to mention enhance discussions about conducting research in virtual spaces.

    I look forward to sharing my research findings with those here at UW-Stout interested in digital storytelling, public writing, and social software; doing so will let me generate new connections both in my home Department of English and across campus.

    Here are the titles I ordered with the grant money:

  • Because Digital Writing Matters: Improving Student Writing in Online and Multimedia Environments
  • Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press
  • Say Everything: How Blogging Began, What It’s Becoming, and Why It Matters
  • Digital Literacies: Concepts, Policies and Practices (New Literacies and Digital Epistemologies)
  • Digital Literacy for Technical Communication: 21st Century Theory and Practice

    Anyone have other titles to suggest for future reference?

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  • Sep
    2010

    metablogging

    blogit
    As I mentioned in this post, ever since I started the 4/4 teaching load I’ve neglected my blog, offering only embedded video and a quick comment or two and rarely a “long thought.”

    This semester is different though because I’m finally requiring UW-Stout students to blog, specifically my graduate students and my 1 directed study student, so I’d like to be able to lead by example.

    In fact, I’ve been talking blogs with the 101 students too as we work through the chapters in New New Media, but they are only required to microblog via Twitter. This post isn’t really about that exercise, but in case anyone is curious, here are the guidelines I give them:

  • Whenever reading is assigned, students will be required to post at least 2 questions or comments about that text to their timeline. Shared at the beginning of each class period, we will
    reference these tweets as a means to generate discussion.

  • While not required, I encourage you to use this microblogging social network as an informal journal about technology, as a way to communicate with each other, and as a quick way to ask me questions when outside of class.
  • As your teacher, I will use the site to post announcements, extra credit opportunities, and share links relevant to our course focus on social media trends, so it is important that you check in on a daily basis.

    I have to say, I’ve been impressed with the questions/comments they post at the beginning of class as they often take us through the entire 55-minute class period. FYI only 1 student continues to tweet after class…but I digress.

    This post is about how all of this thinking about and requiring student blogs has pushed me to step back and return to Jill Walker’s definition and to also think more about what going public with reader responses means in terms of audience, format, and design.

    If you check out the ENGL-745 blogroll on the side you can see my students’ responses to readings such as “Looking from the Inside Out: Academic Blogging as New Literacy,” “The Social Media Release as a Corporate Communications Tool for Bloggers,” and “Learning with Weblogs: Enhancing Cognitive and Social Knowledge Construction.” Nearly every grad student was either hesitant or curious about blogs, and only 1 had maintained a blog already, so offering these readings early on about the use of blogs for educational and workplace purposes prompted them to reconsider the medium they had only stereotyped in the past. While there are still a few skeptics, one thing for certain is that they are all realizing how whitespace, images, link, and embedded video can add value to their responses.

    Actually, another thing I’ve realized in reading their responses is how many of these MS in Technical and Professional Communication students are also teachers, so I’m glad to have started this course with an emphasis on technological literacy. I’d assumed more would be tech writers in non-academic settings, which is unfamiliar territory to me, but this way we can all reflect upon our own teaching/writing/reading/researching with new technologies and then work our way into the “Work and Play in a User-Generated World” section.

    I really hope these grad students continue to blog throughout their coursework because I know how beneficial it became to my research and how connected I became to other academic bloggers, but I can’t and won’t force anything. If they do continue, though, I hope they make their blog space their own.

    With that said, I’ll close this post by sharing some links, including one to a resource I never thought I’d take seriously, “8 things every blogger can learn by studying Perez Hilton.” If you take a look you’ll find that it’s actually decent advice! But if that’s not your thing, check out “13 blogging lessons learned from Stephen King’s On Writing” and “How blogging can change your life.”

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  • Sep
    2010

    speaking of dance videos…

    Why didn’t this kind of stuff happen when I lived in Boston?

    See here and here for additional examples of Sound of Music-related flash mobs.

    Even if Julie Andrews doesn’t know about this phenomenon, Mashable does!

    And, somehow, all of that reminds me of this from 2007,

    which Henry Jenkins eloquently discussed in his post, “Hustling 2.0: Soulja Boy and the Crank Dat Phenomenon.”

    Sigh…more to discuss with the freshmen when I get to the YouTube chapter!

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    Sep
    2010

    video driven evolution of skills

    I’ve been teaching for 1 week now, and much of my planning and reading for my ENG 101 class has been related to literacy, particularly “What it means to be literate” nowadays. Teaching on a laptop campus has its challenges, but the best part is projection in every classroom. That way, I can show videos and ask students to livetweet responses/comments/questions OR I can ask them to close their laptops and, even if for just a few minutes, focus on only 1 screen.

    I’ve used TED talks in the past, JZ’s, Mena Trott’s, and Rives’ contributions being my favs. This one by Chris Anderson, which references “The LXD: In the Internet age, dance evolves…” and which further reminds me of this “participatory media” post by Henry Jenkins, is a new favorite because it focuses on how video offers us new ways to share information, not to mention visually and perhaps physically learn from it:

    We don’t get into the YouTube chapter of our textbook New New Media for a couple weeks, but I’ll be interested in hearing how students seek, watch, produce, and incorporate video into their day to day lives, whether for learning or entertainment. I wonder how many will already be familiar with TED and/or other video sites like hulu or dailymotion.

    Do you have any video sites that you visit more frequently than YouTube?

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    Sep
    2010

    back to school; back to blogging

    In case you haven’t noticed, ever since I started my job at UW-Stout in 2008 I’ve hardly blogged. The dissertation [on blogs of all things] consumed me and even though I defended in March, formatted in April, skipped the Tampa graduation in May, and finally received the diploma in the mail in July, I took the summer off from anything over 140-characters.

    Doctah Day-Z!!!!!! on Twitpic

    Sure, I traveled to NYC, TX, and Italy, and could write volumes on those trips. I even taught a summer course and scored thousands of AP essay exams in June, but I just couldn’t bring myself back to reading blogs until a few weeks ago.

    Now, though, I have some fresh new research and publication ideas, which I will post on later this week, so beware: I’m totally throwing myself back in to blogging!

    It helps that every course I’m teaching this Fall has a technology emphasis:

    • ENGL 101 is using the textbook New New Media and while these students aren’t required to blog, we will be relying on Twitter [in class only] to generate questions and reactions of assigned readings. 1 section of the 3 is dedicated to a Learning Community called the Google Generation, and I’m excited to see how these students connect our reading and writing to that assigned in the Information and Communication Technologies course they go to immediately after mine.
    • ENGL 495 is a brand new 2-semester capstone course. I have 1 very diligent student, and this semester we’re focusing on research methods with the final project being a proposal and pilot study. I’m having him purchase Research Confidential and Internet Inquiry as well as read a bunch of PDFs that either discuss methodology or put mixed methods into practice.
    • ENGL 745 is a brand new graduate course in our brand new Master of Science in Technical and Professional Communication program. Students are reading Socialnomics as well as 40+ journal articles/book chapters [including some from Always On, The Future of the Internet and How to Stop It, and Convergence Culture], all with the goal of “interpreting the ways emerging media and digital technologies affect writing, rhetoric, literacy, and the discipline of technical and professional communication.” If anyone has any suggestions for more tech comm-y texts that I should include, please let me know!Aside from academic posts, I can tell you already that I’m also going to share my opinions on various TV shows since I’ve become quite the fangirl. Between watching stuff online, via Netflix, and now with cable at home, I’ve got quite the list of favorites. To close this post, I’ll share 2 swoontastic pics of my man, Don Draper. Please note, I don’t have a crush on Jon Hamm. It is only Don Draper that makes me weak in the knees.

      suit
      swoon

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    Jan
    2010

    rhetoric & the “truth”

    My favorite way to start a semester in Advanced Rhetoric:

    In addition to readings from our three course texts: Rhetoric and Human Consciousness, Rhetoric and Style, and Rhetoric Online, the semester will bring in PDFs of readings like Tania Smith’s “What Connection Does Rhetorical Theory Have to Technical and Professional Communication?”

    I also plan to show Thank You For Smoking, The Invention of Lying, Shattered Glass, and, if there’s time, SuperSize Me.

    So much to cover and so many arguments to analyze, but I think my upper-level undergraduates can handle it!

    It also helps that I’ve got 85-minute class periods. 😉

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