Integrating thought provoking conversation into writing: Blogging in the classroom

David Corwin, Angela Hattery

Session Information

Year: 2016 | Time: 11:20am-12:00pm | Location: Innovation Hall (Room 131)

Abstract

In this session, we will discuss a strategy to encourage students (both undergraduate and graduate) to read the material and engage in thoughtful conversation with their peers outside of class. In a blogging format, students are required to choose 1-2 partners from the class to discuss outside of class, on a regular (at least bi-weekly basis) the class the readings, the class discussion, and any other course materials, such as films, with each other. One advantage to this format is that often students who are not strong participators in the classroom are able to gather their thoughts and engage with their peers through this assignment. Not only does this technique encourage reading of the course texts in their entirety, but it encourages synthesis and applicability to daily life. We call these assignments “integrative essays” because they encourage students to integrate course readings and life experiences as well as the observations of their peers. These assignments have been used in Women and Gender Studies and sociology courses that focus on gender, race, sexuality, intimate partner violence, and institutional violence. 

Keywords

integrative thought, social justice, women and gender studies

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