Posts Tagged ‘Bedford/St. Martin’s’

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235 Downloads and 2,820 Clicks Per Semester

posted: 3.20.13 by Nedra Reynolds

For the 47th time in the past two weeks, I have typed this sentence into the comment box on Sakai >
Assignments:  “Please see my comments on the copy I’ve attached below.”

I’m tired of typing that sentence.

By the end of the semester, I will have typed it approximately 188 times along with onscreen-clicking at least 12 times per submission.  Is this the best use of my time?  Come to think of it, is the entire rigmarole that I go through to accept electronic texts the most efficient way of responding to student writing? (Okay, maybe there’s no efficient way . . . ) Collecting paper documents and writing in the margins with a pen is looking better to me lately—at least until I remember that my backpack was more stuffed; and that all those pages transmitted germs, absorbed cigarette smoke, and got wet, walked on by the dog, or stained by a teacup.

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Teaching about Writing Instructions with Comics

posted: 3.18.13 by Elizabeth Losh and Jonathan Alexander

Instructions are obviously a nearly ubiquitous part of life in our visual culture and can be found everywhere from the emergency exit of an airplane to a tube of toothpaste. Unlike writing that is organized into prose paragraphs, instructions often take the form of an ordered list that may seem to be woefully lacking in sentence variety for lovers of intricate grammatical style.  However, encouraging students in composition classes to think about writing instructions can be a useful way to discuss audience and purpose and improve students’ understanding of different rhetorical situations.

Technical writing courses often include very interesting prompts about how to write clear, effective, and economical instructions.  My former colleague at UC Irvine, computer science faculty member David Kay, was fond of assigning the task of writing instructions for how to build a particular object from building toys, such as Legos or Tinker Toys.  Peer editing groups would need to try to follow the instructions to build the intended object (such as a specific house, vehicle, or animal) without illustrations and without verbal prompting from the instructor. [read more]

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Categories: Elizabeth Losh
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It’s a Deep Subject

posted: 3.13.13 by Elizabeth Wardle and Douglas Downs

Your intrepid co-bloggers have, for about the past year, and especially the past couple months, been consumed with revising Writing about Writing for its second edition. This past week we finished its new material, and the 2e is much closer to our ideal book.

I thought I’d talk here about why that would be—what’s the difference between an ideal and what can actually be written? Why don’t the two simply correspond? Why don’t we “get it right the first time”? Or at least the second time? Several reasons:

1. We’re trying to hit a moving target. Every time we teach a WAW class, we learn more about how to do it well. Every new teacher using a WAW approach brings new considerations and ideas. We happen on approaches, readings, or ideas that make us happier. (For example, we’re learning now about threshold concepts, which the second edition is built to account for.)

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Categories: Douglas Downs
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A Journal Built Around "Lore"

posted: 7.7.09 by Nick Carbone

LORE began when two University of Illinois at Chicago professors, Patricia Harkin and James Sosnoski, got in touch with Bedford/St. Martin’s about an idea several of their graduate students had: to publish a journal built around lore, “the informal ways in which teachers accumulate knowledge about pedagogical traditions and practices. Many of us who seek advice about what happens in our classrooms do not turn to published journals, but instead ask our colleagues, ‘what would you do?’ LORE is interested in these answers” (“What is ‘lore’?”).

The goal of the journal was to make a scholarly home for lore, which is a valuable and intellectually rich way of knowing and understanding the teaching, scholarship, and academic service.

The founding editors — Eve Wiederhold, Beth Burmester, Eva Bednarowicz, Tina Kazan, and Nels P. Highberg — published the first issue in the spring of 2001 and their final issue in the summer of 2004. The aim had been for the journal to be a vehicle for graduate students and adjuncts to gain experience managing a publication — the editors issued calls for contributions, designed the journal’s look and feel, and reviewed and selected submissions. Bedford/St. Martin’s sole role was to publish the journal online for free and to help promote it. [read more]

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Congratulations to the Kairos Awards Winners

posted: 6.23.09 by Nick Carbone

On behalf of Joan Feinberg, President, and all of Bedford/St. Martin’s, we want to recognize and acknowledge how important the work of TAs and Adjuncts is. We support these awards, funding the three $500 prizes, because the innovative work of TAs and Adjuncts in the Computers and Writing community is so important to the field. We’re especially gratified to be working with Kairos, a journal founded and sustained by TAs and Adjuncts. It’s a journal that is fun to read and write for because its ideas excite.

Rik Hunter, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Annette Vee, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Krista A. Kennedy, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

Jerz’s Literacy Weblog by Dennis G. Jerz, Seton Hill University

Expanding the Space of f2f: Writing Centers and Audio-Visual-Textual Conferencing
Melanie Yergeau (who also received an award last year), The Ohio State University
Kathryn Wozniak, DePaul University
Peter Vandenberg, DePaul University

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Categories: Professional Conferences
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Making Waves at City Hall

posted: 3.13.09 by archived

by Kimberly White, Editor

The Bedford/St. Martin’s party has become a tradition at the CCCC’s conference. Every year the event is held offsite at a location that is significant to the local community. In 2007 it took place at New York’s historic “Tavern on the Green” restaurant. Last year it was held in the New Orleans Aquarium. This year Bedford hosted the event at San Francisco’s City Hall—a location in keeping with the conference theme “Making Waves.”

Significant wave-making events have taken place in City Hall. Including the House Un-American Activities Committee hearings and subsequent protests, and Harvey Milk’s assassination in 1978. More recently, City Hall served as the site for some of the nation’s first same-sex marriages, and later as the site for protests against Proposition 8.

But as I strolled through the great hall, it was the beauty, not the history, of the site that provoked thoughts about what making waves really means. Standing under the rotunda, I remembered Charles Bazerman’s inspired opening address to the conference. He spoke about the incredible power of writing to coordinate complex societies, to move the human spirit, to connect us with our past, and to lay the foundation for our future. He reminded us that teachers of writing have an important mission; they are responsible for passing this sacred art on to the next generation. With that in mind, the grand rotunda seemed an even more apt place to celebrate the commitment, passion, and monumental contribution writing instructors will make to our society today, and for generations to come.

Thank you for your service. We at Bedford/St. Martin’s salute you!

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Categories: Editor, Professional Conferences
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