Recovered Writing, Brittain Fellowship, CETL Brown Bag, Writing the Brain: Using Twitter and Storify, Oct. 2, 2013

Slides from "Writing the Brain" PowerPoint.

Slides from “Writing the Brain” PowerPoint.

This is the sixty-second post in a series that I call, “Recovered Writing.” I am going through my personal archive of undergraduate and graduate school writing, recovering those essays I consider interesting but that I am unlikely to revise for traditional publication, and posting those essays as-is on my blog in the hope of engaging others with these ideas that played a formative role in my development as a scholar and teacher. Because this and the other essays in the Recovered Writing series are posted as-is and edited only for web-readability, I hope that readers will accept them for what they are–undergraduate and graduate school essays conveying varying degrees of argumentation, rigor, idea development, and research. Furthermore, I dislike the idea of these essays languishing in a digital tomb, so I offer them here to excite your curiosity and encourage your conversation.

In this Recovered Writing post, I am including two PDF files that I used in my presentation on “Writing the Brain: Using Twitter and Storify” for the 2 October 2013 CETL Brown Bag Workshop. The first is my PowerPoint presentation file and the second is my handwritten presentation notes. Normally, I type up a carefully written script for my presentations, but in this case, I wrote my speaking notes out by hand. While I was driven my a tight deadline imposed by several other responsibilities converging at the same time, I saw this as an opportunity to experiment with a way of presenting that I normally don’t do and I wasn’t completely comfortable doing. As I tell my students, we grow by challenging ourselves, doing new things, and experimenting with new approaches. This was one such attempt on my part.

DevLab’s Digital Pedagogy Workshop Series Begins Next Week on April 1

DevLab Workshop Flyer. Created by the AWESOME WCP Interns!

DevLab Workshop Flyer. Created by the AWESOME WCP Interns!

Georgia Tech Writing and Communication Program’s Brittain Fellow-run DevLab has lined up four upcoming workshops for you on Podcasting, Social Media, Flipped Classrooms, and Interactive Fiction. Through these workshops, we wanted to share some of the things that we’ve been working on pedagogically and professionally with you. We invite you to join us for learning, sharing, and collaboration on these topics. We encourage all participants to bring their experiences, ideas, and questions to make each workshop more informative and useful for all. Information about each upcoming workshop is included below and on the attached flyer. If you have any questions, please contact me or the workshop leader(s). See you at the workshops!

Spring 2014 Digital Pedagogy Workshops
Have you ever wanted to create or teach podcasts? What about developing social media assignments? How about flipping your classroom when teaching close readings? Or maybe you want to create interactive fiction with your students? If so, you are invited to our informal digital pedagogy workshops in the Hall DevLab. Session leaders will share their experiences developing curricula and adopting teaching practices using a specific technology or approach.
All workshops held in Stephen C. Hall Bldg., Room 012, DevLab.
1. Podcasting and the DevLab Recording Studio, Tuesday April 1, 1pm-2pm

Alison Valk’s introductory workshop will be an introduction to podcasting. Participants will learn the basics of podcasting software (Audacity and Audition) and have an opportunity to see our Recording Studio and its technology.
2. Social Media Pedagogy and Assignments, Tuesday April 8, 3pm-4pm

Jason W. Ellis and Valerie Johnson’s workshop will discuss how they each integrate social media into their teaching practices and design assignments with its use in mind. They invite participants to bring ideas and approaches for using and teaching social media to this open discussion about theoretical and practical aspects of social media pedagogy.
3. Rethinking the Flipped Classroom: A Multimodal Approach to Learning, Thursday April 10, 3pm-4pm

Mirja Lobnik’s workshop will focus on ways to integrate online resources into our teaching. In particular, it will showcase a lecture video that demonstrates close reading and provides contextual information, present student responses, and invite a discussion of the benefits and challenges of the flipped classroom.
4. Programming Interactive Fiction: What You and Your Students Can Do with Inform 7, Tuesday April 15, 11am-12pm

Jonathan Kotchian’s workshop will offer a brief introduction to a “natural English” programming
language used to create interactive fiction and show participants how they and their students can create rhetorically focused games. No coding experience necessary.

Georgia Tech’s Communication Center: Composition Support for All Yellow Jackets

Dr. Dustin Hannum talks with my students.

Dr. Dustin Hannum talks with my students.

Last week, my ENGL1101 students were treated to tours of Georgia Tech’s Communication Center on the fourth floor of the Clough Commons in Room 447.

Dr. Julie Hawk speaking with my students.

Dr. Julie Hawk speaks with my students.

The Communication Center serves the communication needs of all undergraduates and graduate students at Georgia Tech. The professional and peer tutors in the Communication Center provide help students use WOVEN modalities (e.g., written, oral, visual, electronic, and nonverbal modes) and  rhetoric (e.g., audience, situation, choices, persuasion) in their communication-focused assignments and other work.

Dr. Dustin Hannum pointing out the Communication Center's computer lab.

Dr. Dustin Hannum points out the Communication Center’s computer lab.

This means that their staff help students with writing across media, oral presentations, visual artifacts like posters or videos, electronic or computer-based compositions, and more. If you need help planning a project, go see them. If you need help organizing your writing, go see them. If you want to learn how to fix a specific problem with your writing, go see them. They can help students with class projects, conference presentations, resumes, cover letters, poster presentations, and more!

Dr. Julie Hawk asking my students a question about their projects.

Dr. Julie Hawk asks my students a question about their projects.

The Communication Center’s  central goal is to guide, suggest, and teach students to be the best communicators that they can be instead of simply doing the work for the student and depriving students of the benefit of learning. This means that tutors work with you instead of for you. They don’t proofread or copyedit, but they will assist students with identifying trends and helping students learn how to improve their communication skills.

I recommend that my ENGL1101 and LCC3403 students call on the Communication Center for help on our various class projects. Due to their high demand, students should make a reservation on their website linked above. Also, students can reserve the presentation rooms in the Clough here, but if you want a Communication Center tutor to help you, you will need to make a tutoring appointment, too.

DevLab’s End of Semester Best Computing Practices Workshop, Wed, Dec 4, 2013, 4-5PM

S is for Security!

S is for Security!

Our computers and other computing devices store some of our most important belongings: photos, videos, music, syllabi, research, and manuscripts. We owe it to ourselves to maintain and protect these things through best practices in computer maintenance, security, backups, and training. During the upcoming winter break, I would like to encourage everyone to spend some time putting your cyber-house in order before the spring semester begins.

To help you with this and to promote best practices, I will hold a workshop in DevLab on Wednesday, Dec. 4 from 4:00-5:00PM before D-Ped. Workshop participants are encouraged to bring their Mac or PC to the meeting. Tablets are also welcome.

Before or after the workshop, you can download the first version of my best practices guide from here: ellis-jason-best-computing-practices-v1.pdf

If you have a question for the workshop that I cannot answer off the top of my head, we can use the workshop as an opportunity to learn something new together.

See you in DevLab!

My Poster for SAMLA 2013: The Brittain Fellowship’s DevLab: Space, Resources, Expertise, and Collaboration

My DevLab Poster.

My DevLab Poster.

This year, Georgia Tech’s Writing and Communication Program and its Brittain Fellows had a strong presence at the annual South Atlantic Modern Language Association meeting in Atlanta, Georgia.

I presented a poster on the program’s R&D unit, DevLab. To compose the poster, I took a panoramic photo of DevLab’s main space (we also have an external recording booth). My students and fellow Brittain Fellows are pictured doing work and collaborating at various events over the past few months.

Standing next to my poster in the Buckhead Marriott.

Standing next to my poster in the Buckhead Marriott.

We also had posters on the Communication Center, our pedagogical research, and our scholarly research. Here’s a list of all posters from the official program:

10. Georgia Institute of Technology Brittain Fellowship,

Poster Series I

The Marion L. Brittain Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Georgia Institute of Technology

a. Jason Ellis, DevLab: Research and Development Lab Facility

b. CommLab: Tutoring Center for Multimodal Communication

11. Georgia Institute of Technology Brittain Fellowship, Poster Series II

WOVEN: Multimodal Communication in the Classroom

a. Joy Bracewell

b. Jennifer Lux

c. Julia Munro

12. Georgia Institute of Technology Brittain Fellowship, Poster Series III

Intersections between Scholarship and Pedagogy

a. Aaron Kashtan

b. Jennifer Orth-Veillon

c. Aron Pease

13. Georgia Institute of Technology Brittain Fellowship, Poster Series IV

Changing Higher Education

a. Mirja Lobnik, World Englishes Committee

b. Multiple Presenters, Curriculum Innovation Committee

c. Arts Initiatives Committee

Besides participating in the poster session, I also took notes from N. Katherine Hayles’ plenary lecture on Friday afternoon. I will post my notes from that talk here soon.

Next year, I will propose a paper for SAMLA and hopefully present an updated version of the DevLab poster. See you there!