The Roving Rhetorician
This initiative uses a team-teaching model to address writing in the sciences efficiently and lastingly. We work with three science faculty members in the physical and natural sciences each semester. In time, we envision extending the model into other disciplines. Ultimately, The Roving Rhetorician seeks to nurture a university-wide culture of writing at Channel Islands.
- Clarify the writing goals and expectations in relation to the particular course and discipline
- Develop writing prompts that reflect those goals and outcomes in the course
- Develop rubrics that can help assess how students achieve those outcomes
- Model in-class activities focused on writing and on-line pedagogies such as peer-to-peer feedback on Blackboard
- Attend approximately 1/3 of the course meetings in each partner course
Please note that this is not about providing an English faculty member to grade or "correct" papers. Rather, the aim is to integrate writing with course content and to enable science faculty to teach writing in their disciplines with the effective tools and pedagogical strategies.
Because this "roving" team-teaching model can reach multiple classrooms each semester, we believe it can have a significant and transformative effect on faculty preparedness and student learning in a relatively short time.
If there are more than three requests to be part of the pilot, the CIS committee will choose among the volunteers according to the following criteria:
- Potential for writing to play an important role in achieving course outcomes
- The course is repeated frequently and reaches many science majors
- The faculty member is willing to adjust or develop course materials and class activities that can be used independently in future semesters
Reports and Resources:
English faculty work closely with each selected faculty member for a portion of a semester. During that time, the Roving Rhetorician observes several classes; reviews course documents such as syllabi, writing prompts, quizzes, exams and writing rubrics; works with faculty to further develop prompts, rubrics, and activities geared toward fostering writing; and prepares an informal report offering feedback. To date, English faculty members Sean Carswell and Mary Adler have served as Roving Rhetoricians. To access their reports and resources please click on the links below. Faculty responses can be accessed by clicking the link provided on each specific page.
Virgil Adams, Psychology
Sean Anderson, Environmental Science and Resource Management
Rachel Cartwright, Biology
Nitika Parmar, Biology
Geoff Buhl, Mathematics
Blake Gillespie, Chemistry
Brian Rasnow, Physics