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Lincoln College English faculty members share teaching methods at conference

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[May 03, 2008]  Three Lincoln College English faculty members were invited to give presentations at the 44th annual Community College and University English Articulation Conference in Urbana in mid-April. Jeris D. Livengood, Spring Hyde and Judith Cortelloni shared thoughts and ideas on teaching in today's information society.

Livengood's presentation, titled, "Hey, 'Boyz' … 'Surf's Up'! Teaching Bildungsroman in the Composition Classroom," discussed her use of current films to help students understand literary genres. "As an instructor of a multicultural freshman English composition course at a small college, my challenge is to connect the work of the past to the students' lives in the present," said Livengood. "I have found using films such as 'Boyz n the Hood,' 'Cars' and 'Surf's Up,' in combination with Randolph P. Shaffner's in-depth analysis of the genre, effective in helping students comprehend Bildungsroman and, consequently, make the connections to their own lives,"

Hyde and Cortelloni made a joint presentation called "Student Authors," which focused on the need for writing instructors to recognize their students as potential authors.

Cortelloni introduced the steps of creating a writing competition as well as the process of creating an annual booklet for use in the classroom. Cortelloni said Lincoln College's “ROAR,” the published writings of the winners in the James Fulcher Writing Competition, is proof the teaching method is effective. "By using 'ROAR' for reading assignments, it benefits our students because they are often intimidated by the professional writings that appear in textbooks. Over 70 percent of students surveyed noted that they felt the essays in 'ROAR' better represented what their instructors were looking for compared to the professional essays in textbooks," said Cortelloni.

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"More and more we are seeing the positive results the writing contest has had on our students' feelings of ownership over their writing and how that sense of having something tangible to show the world increases the amount of effort they put forth in the revision process," said Hyde.

The conference gave insights into teaching composition and inspired attendees to try some of these new things in their classrooms.

[Text from file received from Lincoln College]


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