Contemplations

My Next Job Will Be At Starfleet Academy (Another Tech, No to Tech, Yes Column)

Nov 7th, 2013 | By
Star-Trek-Starfleet-Academy-star-trek-35218670-640-480

We were fans of Star Trek.  Sure, we thought: people will travel through space, we’ll meet with beings from other planets, we’ll fly space ships, and for work, we’ll hold flat, thin computers in one hand and tea in the other, the simulated daylight shining ever-so-slightly off our bald pates.  Sure, that will happen, because

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“We Can’t Stop Here! This is Tech Country!” Going Gonzo in English 1101

Oct 31st, 2013 | By
steadman gonzo

I’ve been thinking lately about one of the many useful comments my adviser made about the failed novel I submitted in the last semesters of my MFA program. She told me I’d shown bad manners. Instead of organizing the book into chapters, I used stick figure drawings to mark breaks between sections. No real respite

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Telling Stories, Building Community: “This I Believe” in the First-Year Writing and Communication Classroom

Oct 4th, 2013 | By
tib_essay_web_sp13_sm

In the spring of 2011, Georgia Tech started a “This I Believe” project in partnership with the Writing and Communication Program. The campus reading series and student contest are unofficial off-shoots of a popular radio series, originally hosted by Edward R. Murrow in the 1950s, and then resuscitated on NPR from 2005-2009. The radio essays

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The “This I Believe” Essay and Orality in the Classroom

Oct 2nd, 2013 | By
Screen shot 2013-10-02 at 11.31.31 AM

I use the personal “This I Believe” essay as a means to develop and appreciate oral language skills in the classroom. My students script their essays keeping in mind that they will be submitting their essays in an audio-visual format. I have found that this project has a profound impact on how the students compose

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Making [Multimodal] History: 21st Century Timelines and 20th Century Connections

Sep 16th, 2013 | By
timeline1

One of my challenges in teaching students is that they often don’t get a lot of my references. I’m sure many teachers have had this problem: jokes that you think are hilarious fall flat, or mentions of pop-cultural figures that you assume are common knowledge end up getting blank looks. But this problem also extends

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Teaching Composition with Interactive Fiction, Part Two

Sep 14th, 2013 | By
Plotkin's tutorial game

In an earlier post, I explained why I think interactive fiction (IF) computer games can drive valuable experiments in the multimodal composition classroom.  You can check out Part One for an overview of what IF is and what I think it can do for students.  In the present post, I’ll lay out a few more

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Britt Fellow Goes Bibliophile

Jun 21st, 2013 | By
lamour

It always seems self-contradictory to proffer sage career advice to fellow teachers and academics. I am not too far removed from the realm of the Brittain Fellows, having been one from 2007-2008. Like you, I walked among the hallowed halls of Skiles and watched the ever-fluctuating stream of students, many convinced they were born to

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Anatomy of the Bubble Girl

Jun 4th, 2013 | By
bubble girl

The moment Diane Jakacki showed me a picture of the Bubble Girl being chased by a bent but strangely menacing Prince Charles, I knew I had to write something about memes. That’s probably an exaggeration. I did laugh a lot. And I did do some investigating. Turns out Chubby Bubble Girl is part of an entire

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Teaching Composition with Interactive Fiction

May 2nd, 2013 | By
Note, in this excerpt from Plotkin's tutorial game, how the player-character and the narrative voice take turns typing to each other.

Regular readers of TECHStyle may remember my mentioning, back in September, my plans to use interactive fiction (“IF”) computer games in my multimodal composition classes.  After two semesters of teaching students to read, play, and write IF games, I can say that the experiment was mostly a success.  While we faced a few frustrations (largely

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A Model for Mentoring

Apr 11th, 2013 | By
chart1

The Writing and Communication Program has an ongoing initiative to provide mentoring to first year post-doctorates looking to further professionalize as they make their way to full time positions. As a new Brittain Fellow, I – Peter Fontaine – was paired with LMC faculty member, Dr. Krystina Madej. I had been both a mentor and

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