Putting it in Writing: Teaching Circles and Institutional Return on Investment

*** The following is an abstract submitted to the 2017 NeMLA convention in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania***   For the Fall 2017 semester, the SUNY Cortland composition program implemented “teaching circles” as a required, yet loosely-defined, obligation for all instructors teaching FYW in the program. Hoping to spur dialogue, conversation and communication among program stakeholders, the WPAs … Continue reading Putting it in Writing: Teaching Circles and Institutional Return on Investment

Discourse in Democracy: Composition, Digital Citizenship and the Crafting of Authentic Rhetorical Situations

The scene is a familiar one. A student knocks reluctantly on my office door, enters the musty room with uncertainty and then proceeds to speak some deeply heartfelt words in a trembling, quivering voice. Something along the lines of “I do not feel comfortable with other people viewing the writing I produce for this class.” … Continue reading Discourse in Democracy: Composition, Digital Citizenship and the Crafting of Authentic Rhetorical Situations

Cognitive Seeds: The Role of Creative Thinking in First-Year Composition

Here's the body of what I'll present at the 2017 SUNY Council on Writing conference in Syracuse, NY. My talk is just that-- a talk-- so these notes are really only serving as memory aids. I won't be reading word-by-word directly from a conference paper, but rather will be verbally outlining a thesis on the … Continue reading Cognitive Seeds: The Role of Creative Thinking in First-Year Composition

Should Students Choose Their Own Writing Topics?: A Mindful Approach

      Should first-year writing students choose their own essay topics? I’d like to take some time this morning to venture an interesting take on this question that has been turning around in my head for a few months now. Long a topic of boisterous debate within composition and rhetoric, the role of student … Continue reading Should Students Choose Their Own Writing Topics?: A Mindful Approach

The Faces of Janus: Rothenberg, Divergent Thinking and the Productivity of Gray Areas

I'd like to begin this post by posing a question to my readers, especially those involved in the ever-complicated undertaking that is the teaching of the craft of writing: how can we press our writing communities, whether they be inside of the college classroom or outside of it, to travel intellectually beyond current thinking into … Continue reading The Faces of Janus: Rothenberg, Divergent Thinking and the Productivity of Gray Areas

Cognitive Seeds: 2017 SUNY Council on Writing Presentation

In a few weeks I'll be presenting at the 2017 SUNY Council on Writing conference to be held at Onondaga Community College in Syracuse, NY.  Here's the abstract of the presentation I'll deliver, which delves into creativity, cognition and the college writing classroom in the age of distraction. Cognitive Seeds: The Role of Creative Thinking … Continue reading Cognitive Seeds: 2017 SUNY Council on Writing Presentation

Can We Hold Class Outside, Professor? Nature, Cognition and Composition

Composition and education have long questioned a central premise of the academy and university life in higher education: What is a classroom?  Recent research published in Psychological Science steers us toward a premise that is of paramount interest to our discipline.  What would it mean for the natural world to serve the acting, thinking brains of our … Continue reading Can We Hold Class Outside, Professor? Nature, Cognition and Composition