Teaching Philosophy

I organize my writing pedagogy around questions. In my teaching, I stress that strong writing generates and responds to questions in line with a dialogue-centered model of academic conversation. To my mind, argumentative writing is an essential learning tool because it functions as both the outcome and the starting point of a larger process of discovery. From brainstorming to outlining to drafting to revising, the writer’s thoughts evolve alongside and through her prose. By giving my students space, time, and focused verbal and written feedback, I aim to train them not only as writers but simultaneously as critical thinkers prepared to communicate their hard-won insights to the appropriate audience and thus fulfill their ethical responsibilities to a larger community of citizens and scholars.

Link to my complete teaching philosophy.

Current Courses

Fall 16
Writing for Digital Environments: ENGL408. (also taught Spring 16)

A capstone course designed  for upper-level students of all majors to apply multimodal writing strategies to introduce, theorize, and offer perspectives on a wide variety of problems to a public and networked audience.

Practicum in Writing, Editing, and Publishing: ENGL334.

A two-semester course that offers students practical training in book publishing.  Students learn by  actively participating in all stages of the editorial process of an anthology—compiling and evaluating archival sources, editing, copyediting, soliciting material, publicity, and organizing a launch event in tandem with The Digital Press at The University of North Dakota and the City of Grand Forks, ND.  (See more on my projects page)

Spring 16
Diversity in US Literatures: American Migrations: ENGL 229.

A class on reading and writing about the literature of diversity focusing on novels, short stories, film, and television about the immigrant and migrant experience. For their midterm project, students collaborated to build an interactive map charting Junot Diaz’s acclaimed novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao. (See more on my projects page)

Fall 15
Contemporary American Literature: ENGL415.

A capstone class designed for upper-level English majors to use digital methods and sociology of culture techniques to understand reception and canon formation of literary works after 2001.

Diversity in US Literatures: Socioeconomic Class: ENGL 229.

A course focused on understanding American diversity through interpreting novels, short stories, films, and non-fiction attending to socioeconomic class issues. In their final projects, students used the audio editing software Audacity to produce oral histories about their personal experience of social class.  Read more about what I learned from teaching this assignment in my article "Teaching as Troubleshooting" published in Hybrid Pedagogy.