tech: August 2008 Archives

Syllabus Muse?

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So here's a question.

I'm working up my syllabus for a course I'm teaching this fall, a doctoral seminar on Computers and Writing. I've got tons of notes on it, but I'm struggling a little bit with exactly how I want to (a) organize it, and (b) reduce the readings to a manageable set. Later today, I'll probably toss up a page that offers up my progress-to-date, but in the meantime, I thought I'd ask for a little collective wisdom. Here are my constraints:

The course is going to be 1/3 workshop, 2/3 seminar. That is, each week, we're spending at least an hour in our lab, where I'll be running a series of hands-on intros to a broad range of tools and platforms. The goal will be familiarity rather than mastery, of course, but I'm a big believer in the doing alongside the thinking.

One corollary of this is that I will be asking the students to work outside of class on their technology skills, and so I'll be requiring a little less reading than I normally might for a seminar. I'm pretty much decided that I'm not ordering books--my plans are to go with 3-4 chapters/articles per week.

And of course, the problem here is that a given week's topic could pretty much be the theme for an entire course, so I need to really distill rather than overwhelm. At the same time, I've got shelves and shelves of stuff I could use, not to mention all the stuff online. I'm still debating internally about whether it's best to shoot for a rough chronology of C&W or to focus on more recent developments for the most part.

Nothing to it but to do it, I suppose. Look for updates later today. Oh, and the collective wisdom part is this: what texts, perspectives, ideas do y'all think are indispensable for a course on C&W, one that's likely to be the only sustained exposure to the sub-d that these students will experience?



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