How Academic Sins of the Past Can Affect The Future

Every so often, I get into my head that I need a Ph.D.  Right now, I not only think that I need one, but that I actively want it as well. Not having a Ph.D. in this profession is like going to a Star Trek convention without a clearly outlined Kirk vs. Picard argument.  It’s [...]

Help Me Plan My English 102 Class

These past few weeks have been crazy.  Things are finally settling back down, and I hope to be able to get back to a regular blogging schedule sometime soon.  One of the last details that needs to be finalized within a few days are the reading lists on my syllabi.  For the most part, they're [...]

When Students Will Not Read

Out of the three Comp II courses I taught this semester, I found a shocking statistic: no one read.  No one.  Okay, well maybe that’s an exaggeration, but not by much.  Across these approximately 60 students, I found that when I assigned H.P. Lovecraft’s “The Call of Cthulhu,” only five people actually admitted to reading [...]

Say No to the Burrito, College Kids!

I teach a course at my college called First Year Experience 101.  It’s an introduction to college life for--you guessed it--first year students. Whether they are traditional straight-out-of-high-school 18 year olds or worked-my-life-away babyboomers, new students at my school go through FYE to learn college-appropriate study skills, life lessons, and time management. Why Me? I [...]

Joss Whedon Inadvertently Became my Academic Specialty

I never really knew what my academic specialty would be. I originally thought about being a medievalist, but talking a single class on Chaucer where our entire text was in Middle English turned me off of that idea. I then had no idea really where my specialization would come from. Half of my indecision came [...]