Instructor: Durst W 4:40pm – 6:30pm
English 7030 introduces the field of composition studies. In this course, we will examine pedagogical, cultural, and political contexts surrounding the teaching of composition; we will investigate theories underlying teaching practices; and we will explore classroom approaches suggested by these theories. The course is structured to encourage consideration of theory and praxis not in isolation from one another but in close and sometimes uncomfortable proximity, thus permitting an examination of the complex relationship between what we do and how we justify it to ourselves and to the multiple constituencies we serve. The course begins with an overview of current contexts for writing instruction. We will consider the nature of student writing and the teacher’s role in the writing classroom, including ways of structuring writing assignments, methods of responding to written work, and strategies for evaluating writing. Throughout the semester, while thinking about ways to improve the writing of our students–and while reflecting about just what it means to write well–we will also be working to strengthen the clarity and power of our own prose.