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ENG 675-01 Colloquium: Teaching College Reading and Writing


Instructor: Dr. Tabetha Adkins, Assistant Professor of English

Office Location: Hall of Languages 229
Office Hours: Monday 1-3; Tuesday 11-1; Thursday 1-3
Office Phone: (903) 886.5269
Office Fax: (903) 886.5980
University Email Address:


Materials – Textbooks, Readings, Supplementary Readings:

Textbook(s) Required:

The Elements of Literacy by Julie Lindquist and David Seitz. ISBN: 978-0-321-32891-5

The St. Martin's Sourcebook for Writing Tutors, 3rd. ed. by Christina Murphy and Steve
Sherwood, eds. ISBN: 0-312-44226-2

Shane, The Lone Ethnographer: A Beginner's Guide to Ethnography by Sally Campbell

Galman. ISBN: 978-0-7591-0344-3

Engaging Ideas: The Professor's Guide to Integrating Writing, Critical Thinking, and Active
Learning in the Classroom by John C. Bean. 978-0-787-90203-2

The Way Literacy Lives: Rhetorical Dexterity and Basic Writing Instruction by Shannon Carter.
ISBN: 978-0-7914-7355-9

Other Reading(s) Required:

Bloom, Lynn Z. “Freshman Composition as a Middle-Class Enterprise.” College English 58.6

(1996): 654-675. Print. Available

Delpit, Lisa D. “The Silenced Dialogue: Power and Pedagogy in Educating Other People‟s
Children.” Harvard Educational Review 58.3 (1988): 280-98. Print. Available
Downs, Douglas and Elizabeth Wardle. “Teaching about Writing, Righting Misconceptions:
(Re)Envisioning „First-Year Composition‟ as „Introduction to Writing Studies.‟” College
Composition and Communication 58:4 (2007): 552-584. Print. Available

Course Description:

ENG 675- Colloquium on Teaching College Reading and Writing is a required course for
graduate students teaching in the writing center or composition program for the first time.
Students will both engage with the theoretical texts that shape our programs and learn some
practical applications of those concepts for the composition classroom and writing center.

Departmental approval is required for enrollment in this course.

Student Learning Outcomes:

1. Students will engage with and understand the texts that serve as a foundation for the
basic writing program, first year composition program, and writing center at Texas A&M

2. Students will learn pedagogical strategies for teaching reading and writing at the college
level, including assignment creation, sequence writing, responding to students‟ texts,
managing classroom discussion, etc.

3. Students will learn about teaching composition by observing other teachers in the basic
writing classroom, the composition classroom, and/or the writing center and then reflect on
these observations in written responses.


Instructional / Methods / Activities Assessments

This course is divided into four units: English 1301, Basic Writing (ENG 100), the Writing
Center, and English 1302. In each unit we will read some of the theoretical texts that inform our
curriculum and practice creating assignments, sequences, lessons, etc. within those theoretical
contexts. We will also devote time in class to discussing what is going on in your own classes
and/or writing center sessions. Overall, this class is designed to help you become a better teacher
and tutor of writing.


Discussion leading:

You will each sign up for a week in which you‟ll be responsible for leading for class discussion.
Before class, your job is to read the texts carefully and create discussion questions and points.
During class, your job is to conduct the conversation: keeping it going, productive, and focused;
asking follow up questions; etc.
Program Philosophy Statements:

In pairs or groups, you will create a philosophy statement for the program explaining why we
teach what and how we do. Each group will work on a different part of the program, including
Basic Writing, ENG 1301 & 1302, and The Writing Center. These texts will be public and will
live on the web, so when you‟re creating these texts, remember you audience and think about
what makes a good web text. This text can include images, sound, video, and text.

Teaching Portfolio:

Your teaching portfolio, a common text requested by hiring committees at colleges and
universities, will contain:

 a teaching philosophy statement

 a sample teaching and/or tutoring activity
 a marked student paper
 an observation report of another teacher
 a reflection of your own teaching


You are expected to actively engage in each class period. Active engagement includes coming to
class prepared with assigned reading and/or writing complete, participating to positive ends in
class discussion, coming to class regularly and on time, etc.


Assignment Name Percentage of Grade

Discussion leading 15%
Teaching Portfolio 40%
Program Philosophy Statement 30%
Participation 15%

Grading Scale

The course is pass/fail. Students who attend class, participate in discussion, and complete all
assignments with quality work will pass. Failure complete these requirements will fail.

100%-60% Pass
Below 60% Fail


You will need access to the Internet and a printer to print three articles we will discuss in class.
You‟re expected to have access to the readings on the days we are scheduled to read them.
The final assignment, the program philosophy statement, is required to be a web text, so you may
need access to web editing materials (Sea Monkey), movie editing software (iMovie;
Movie Maker), sound editing software (Audacity), or image editing software (Picassa)
depending on the kind of text you decide to create with the group. This software is
available on any library computer and on the computers in the labs in this building and the
writing center.


Interaction with Instructor Statement:

The very best way to contact me is to send me an e-mail at

I‟m also available for meeting during my office hours, Monday 1-3; Tuesday 11-1; Thursday 1-
3. My office is located at HL 229. Appointments scheduled through e-mail are appreciated.


Course Specific Procedures:

Academic dishonesty/ Plagiarism:

Professors in the Department of Literature and Languages do not tolerate plagiarism and
other forms of academic dishonesty. Instructors uphold and support the highest academic
standards, and students are expected to do likewise. Penalties for students guilty of
academic dishonesty include disciplinary probation, suspension, and expulsion. (Texas
A&M University- Commerce Code of Student Conduct 5.b [1,2,3]).

Plagiarism isn‟t simply the use of another source‟s words without giving credit to that
source. In fact, this issue is far more complicated. For example:

1. If you write an entire paragraph based on information from a source and only cite
that source at the end of the paragraph, this practice can be considered a form of
2. If you use an author‟s idea without crediting the author, this practice can be
considered a form of plagiarism.
3. If you turn in an essay you‟ve used in another course, you can be accused of
plagiarism. Yes, you can plagiarize yourself!
4. If you buy a paper from an online “paper mill,” this is definitely plagiarism.
5. If someone writes your paper for you, this is definitely plagiarism.
6. If you “lift” sentences, phrases, or paragraphs from a source (online, a book, a
peer‟s paper, etc.) without giving credit to the source, that is definitely plagiarism.

Some tips for avoiding plagiarism:

1. Take good notes so you‟ll know which sources are making which claims.
2. If you find information in three or more sources, that information is probably
considered “common knowledge” and does not need to be cited.
3. Start working on your assignments early to avoid temptation to purchase a paper
from a “paper mill” in an act of desperation.
4. If you run out of time on an assignment and are tempted to purchase from a “paper
mill,” talk to me. Chances are, I‟ll give you an extension if you need one.
5. Ask for help if you‟re confused. I‟m happy to help you, and the writing center is
staffed with tutors trained in helping students with these issues.

My promise to you:

I promise to never use or other proprietary tools like it because these
programs make money off your work without compensating you. Here‟s how it works:
A university pays for its services (with your tuition dollars). Teachers place
student papers in the program‟s “bank,” and the program compares that paper with other
papers existing in the bank. At that point, the student‟s paper becomes part of the bank.
Therefore, and other tools are making money from this bank full of papers
written by uncompensated students. For more information on this issue, see this article in
the Chronicle of Higher Education:

I also promise, however, that I take academic dishonesty very seriously. If I catch a
student blatantly and purposefully using another writer‟s words, that student should
expect to fail the course.

Help and information:

For great information about plagiarism and how to avoid it, visit this site on Purdue
University‟s Online Writing Lab (OWL) page: I am, of course, always
available to talk through these issues, as well.

Grievance Procedure:

If you have concerns about the class or about me as an instructor, please speak to me about those
concerns. If you are not satisfied with the outcome of our conversation, the next person in the
chain of command is the Department Head of Literature and Languages, Dr. Dunbar-Odom.

Other course policies:

1. I do not accept late work.
2. I do not accept papers submitted via e-mail unless we previously agreed upon that
3. Turn your cell phone ringer off and put it away during class. If you‟re experiencing some
kind of emergency in your personal life that requires access to a cell phone during class,
just let me know before class begins.
4. You must turn in all assignments in order to pass the course.
5. Please be courteous to me and to your classmates; come to class on time. See attendance
policy for more information.
University Specific Procedures:

ADA Statement

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides
comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this
legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that
provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you have a disability requiring an
accommodation, please contact:

Office of Student Disability Resources and Services

Texas A&M University-Commerce
Gee Library 132
Phone (903) 886-5150 or (903) 886-5835
Fax (903) 468-8148
Student Disability Resources & Services

Student Conduct

All students enrolled at the University shall follow the tenets of common decency and acceptable
behavior conducive to a positive learning environment. (See Code of Student Conduct
from Student Guide Handbook).


Class Meeting Date Be Prepared to Discuss:

August Introduction to class- discussion of Downs & Wardle article

September English 1301 theory and practice


14 English 1301 theory and practice

21 English 1301 theory and practice

28 Basic Writing (ENG 101) theory and practice

October Basic Writing (ENG 101) theory and practice


12 Basic Writing (ENG 101) theory and practice

19 English 1302 theory and practice

26 English 1302 theory and practice

November English 1302 theory and practice

9 Writing Center theory and practice

16 Writing Center theory and practice

23 No class-- Thanksgiving

30 Writing Center theory and practice

December Time for program philosophy statement group work


7 Present program philosophy statements and teaching portfolio to

class and guests