(Blogging) With Honors

For those of you who’ve been keeping up, my first foray into seriously integrating blogging into my writing classroom begins (eek) tomorrow. I’m teaching the summer version of the second half of our FYC offerings, Composition & Research (this is actually still a pilot course at this point; this should change over the next year, hopefully and colleagues willing). They’ll be using their blogs to explore and respond to course readings and to report on and discuss their progress on research projects. This will all be folded, tweaked, and revised into a final paper. (That’s the plan, anyway.)

Anyhow, I’m also beginning some serious prep for my fall courses (which I have too many of). I’d like to integrate blogging into my two sections of Composition & Rhetoric–one of which is an Honors section (this is the first time we’ve done Honors FYC, and I’m pretty excited about it).

This brings me (in a roundabout way) to my point here–two questions.

  1. If you do so, how do you use blogs with undergrads?
  2. How would you do an honors or advanced FYC course differently?

In addition to the stuff we’ve “got” to do for assessment & departmental purposes, I’ve already got some plans of my own.  I’d like to do some real workshopping–you know, the kind that you always wish would happen in your classes but never really does because they don’t take the writing seriously.  I think I can get a group of committed (or at least willing to play commited) Honors writers to really put their heads together.

I’d also thought about setting them loose on group-authored blogs.  During C&W ’09, someone on Twitter (can’t remember who at the moment) mentioned that they have their students “create a popular blog”–this sounds like a great idea, and one that allows us to not only get deeply into aspects of rhetoric and digital literacy that I just never can get around to in the normal course, and do so in a very agency-laden situation (for the students).

It’s all rather nascent at this stage, and so I’m VERY interested in suggestions and ideas (or warnings to turn back now before I die).

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