WAC Co-ordinators:
Sarah McLemore
Mark Maier

Take a bow (but to whom?): Paying attention to audience helps my students
Mark Maier

Of all I’ve learned from Writing Across the Curriculum workshops, the one idea that has most improved my students’ writing is paying attention to audience. Whether I’m creating a short question that students will answer to show they completed the reading, or a longer assignment in which students demonstrate what they learned, I now think carefully about for whom students are writing.

Previously, I assumed students were writing for me, an audience that often prompted brain dumps in which students put on paper every fact and idea they remembered, or attempts by students to replicate language they read in textbooks or articles. Neither approach led to good student writing: in the first case, student work was disorganized and often devoid of interesting ideas; in the second case, student writing was stilted and, not surprisingly, failed to measure up to professional standards for which they did not have sufficient content knowledge.

I know from my own experience ....For more click here


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From Bill Walton’s personal chef to GCC’s WAC Committee
Introducing Brian McDonald from the Credit ESL Division

Brian McDonald
Each issue the WAC newsletter will profile a different committee member. To see who’s on the committee and to hear more about how you can get involved with WAC click here.

WAC: Brian, tell us about how you came to teach ESL here at GCC.

Brian: Well, I knew I was interested in being a teacher since I was in the fifth grade. I was very influenced by my fifth grade teacher and I had the goal of teaching high school history. When I went to college, my second major was English but I ended up working as an editor for a marketing company after college. Eventually, someone at work asked me “what are you doing here?” and told me I would be an excellent ESL instructor. I ended up taking his advice and applying for jobs at private language schools. I became the director of a private language school, got my certificate in TESOL from UCSD, and then got my graduate degree in ESL education from Alliant University.

WAC: But I understand that you’re something of a dark horse. Is there any other interesting work experience or hobbies you’d like to share with our readers?

Brian: Well, in addition to teaching and working in marketing I was also, at one point the Bill Walton’s (NBA star and current ESPN NBA commentator) personal chef... For more click here

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Ask Sarah
Do you have a question about student writing? Email Sarah with your question

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UPCOMING EVENTS SPRING 2008

Templates to Teach Writing? An English Division Best Practices Workshop on Graff and Birkenstein’s They Say, I Say: The Moves That Matter in Academic Writing Thursday, February 28 12-1 in LB 225

ESL Across the Curriculum Workshop Friday, March 14 12:15-1 (lunch) and 1-3 (workshop) in Los Robles

Plagiarism Prevention Techniques Frday, April 25 12:30-3 in the GCC Student Center
Last updated: 1/14/2010 11:46:05 AM