Category Archives: teaching

Modernists think they’re so great

The 2nd-most irritating thing* about being a Victorianist is having to deal with our modernist colleagues who appear to believe that modernist claims about Victorian culture were simply true, and not at all artifacts of generational conflict or artistic brand-building.   … Continue reading

Posted in Dickens, fictional autobiography, teaching, things that should stop, Victorian literature | 11 Comments

A miracle of the Force

I was gobsmacked on Friday when something happened for the first time in 10+ years of teaching: A student produced a reasonable definition of the word canonical.  It was a first-year student, in a composition class. And how did the … Continue reading

Posted in family, higher education, star wars, teaching | 1 Comment

Should MLA members be experts in electronic environments?

Alex Reid has a typically thoughtful post this morning on the MLA’s recent white paper on the undergraduate major in language and literature.  There is something a bit embarrassing about the MLA’s assertion that competencies in reading and writing translate … Continue reading

Posted in education, English major, higher education, mla, teaching | Leave a comment

Teaching as a professor

Dr. Crazy has a great post this week about the intensity of an assistant professor’s workload, and how that’s different from graduate school. I also teach at a “regional comprehensive” university, and so have a roughly similar mix of teaching, … Continue reading

Posted in teaching | 1 Comment

Yet another reason not to like RateMyProfessors.com

Today I found out that my parents check up on A’s and my teaching by reading RateMyProfessors.com regularly. Awesome.

Posted in family, teaching, things that should stop | Leave a comment

Students’ research and writing process

This month’s issue of Macworld imagines a typical student’s writing process, and it isn’t pretty: If you’re using Safari to do so some heavy-duty browsing, you’ve probably got multiple windows and multiple tabs open at once.  For instance, when doing … Continue reading

Posted in silliness, teaching | Leave a comment

For future students: How to ask to be let into a course

One of my best things is not taking things personally. Almost nothing has anything to do with me. –Robert Lopez, A Part of the World   Unlike Robert Lopez’s narrator,  “not taking things personally” is one of my worst things.  … Continue reading

Posted in higher education, teaching | 3 Comments

On grades and anxiety

I’m grateful to Chuck and Alex for their encouraging comments about my plan to make my grade distributions public, and it still seems like a good idea to me. However–and maybe this is just me–it is slightly anxiety-provoking.  Last night, … Continue reading

Posted in teaching | 1 Comment

Summer’s finally here

My two summer classes end today!  July and August will be the first two months I’ve gone without teaching since 2003.  I scarcely know what to do . . . (Well, Alton Locke is due to Broadview in August, and … Continue reading

Posted in higher education, teaching | 2 Comments

What’s an assignment for?

This year I’ve been experimenting with a variety of digital replacements for my conventional “3 explication papers + one short paper + one medium-length paper” assignment set; for the purposes of this experiment, I’m not requiring formal papers at all.  … Continue reading

Posted in assessment, higher education, teaching | Leave a comment