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Life After           The Writing Initiative at PCCC developed                        over the past five years a program of...
Our Timeline - 21 months to launch                             Hire Director    LAUNCH PLANNING                    January...
Goals of Initiative                             Increase                            Writing in 25                         ...
Options for Using Writing Intensive         Courses College-WideLooking at other WAC & WID programs using the  writing int...
PCCC’s Writing Intensive Sections• 28 distinct WI courses were selected to have a  WI section(s) during the grant period  ...
WI Course Requirements• Distinct WI syllabus• Writing   – 2,500 words of formal writing   – Additional short informal writ...
WI Courses1.    AE-101 APPRECIATION OF ART       15.   HI-201 U.S. HISTORY I2.    BS-101 BIOLOGY I                 16.   H...
A writing-intensive course incorporatesdiscipline-specific writing extensively into thecourse, and the writing contributes...
Getting the ball rolling…                     Ken was hired in December 2007 to start in January 2008Initial faculty were ...
AT THE LAUNCH,we were piloting 3 courses -but also piloting the designapproach, assessmentmaterials and the trainingand de...
What were faculty concerns?
Professional Development Cycle              Marketing                           Formal     1:1                           T...
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT      Faculty Institutes (61 faculty)Writing Across Disciplines Days (75 faculty)     Off-Campus C...
Faculty InstitutesTOPICS ADDRESSED   Aligning course & Initiative goals                                         • 14 Inst...
• The Initiative team  met with faculty  prior to Institutes to  review the existing  syllabus and any  writing  assignmen...
The Tipping Point?              Year 3              • Significant                improvement in                assessment ...
Whatwestartedwith…
was continually revised along the way…    “Art is never                                         finished, only            ...
REVISIONS INCLUDED• Course design timetable• Training process• Faculty involved (FT  more  PT)• The rubrics for writing a...
Our Initiative has been recognizedwith the 2012 Diana Hacker Awardfor Two-Year Colleges in fosteringstudent success in wri...
So… whatworked?
Keeping the grant-built  birdfeeder filled…
ASSESSMENT Levels        and Methods•Class (student portfolios)•Program (student & faculty surveys, focus  groups)•Grant (...
Data Points• Writing (using 1-12 scale based on CWE, 2 readers)    •   Average score 7.9% (Year 5)    •   Pass rate increa...
60 % of WI faculty reported that                    that were using WI components inThe Ripple Effect   their regular cour...
6   Big Ideas
1      There is no        Field of Dreams.Just because you build it,doesn’t meanthey will come and play
When           2                       Don’t Work,Writing improvement OR Technology OR Critical ThinkingOR Information Lit...
Faculty will use            pedagogy/technology     3  they see how it helps themand NOT just because it helps
Student support          is key4        guidance, scheduling,         academic, technology,         recognition    BUT fac...
Collaboration    In departments, across the5   college and with other    colleges and high schools
Is the goal6                     or    passing rates, retention, 3-year graduation rate…
Sustainability andInstitutionalizationis more thanjust funding                       1.   Staffing                       2...
Links to all our resources for the Initiative   http://www.pccc.edu/home/initiative              Contact info    Ken kenne...
Life After Composition: Improving Student Learning with Writing
Life After Composition: Improving Student Learning with Writing
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Life After Composition: Improving Student Learning with Writing

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The Writing Initiative at Passaic County Community College developed over five years a program of student and faculty support and collaboration across disciplines at the general education course level. The Writing Initiative, which received a Diane Hacker 2012 Award, solidifies a targeted approach to student success by focusing on reforming curriculum, providing ample academic support, and creating opportunities for faculty professional development.

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Transcript of "Life After Composition: Improving Student Learning with Writing"

  1. 1. Life After The Writing Initiative at PCCC developed over the past five years a program of Composition: student and faculty support and Improving Student collaboration across disciplines at the general education course level. The WritingLearning with Writing Initiative, which received a Diane Hacker 2012 Award, solidifies a targeted approach to student success by focusing on reforming curriculum, providing ample academic support, and creating opportunities for faculty professional development. Elizabeth Nesius Kenneth Ronkowitz Passaic County Community College Paterson, NJ
  2. 2. Our Timeline - 21 months to launch Hire Director LAUNCH PLANNING January 2008 Fall 08 writing the 3 grant, CWC, Hire staff & coursesJanuary 2007 course redesign Sp 08 – Su 08 FUNDING received Spring (Fall 07) 2009 Planning 2 more Phase 2 courses
  3. 3. Goals of Initiative Increase Writing in 25 Gen-Ed Classes Build Introduce CollegeTechnology Levelto Students Writing & Faculty Center Improve Improve Critical Information Thinking in Literacy Writing
  4. 4. Options for Using Writing Intensive Courses College-WideLooking at other WAC & WID programs using the writing intensive course approach: 1. Add writing competencies to all courses 2. Redesign certain courses as “writing- intensive” in all sections 3. Redesign and designate some course sections as WI
  5. 5. PCCC’s Writing Intensive Sections• 28 distinct WI courses were selected to have a WI section(s) during the grant period – The first 24 were all General Education courses• The redesigned section would have writing, critical thinking, and information literacy elements.
  6. 6. WI Course Requirements• Distinct WI syllabus• Writing – 2,500 words of formal writing – Additional short informal writing assignments• Critical Thinking elements in at least one assignment• Information Literacy elements in at least one assignment• Use of rubrics for formative assessment• Use of tutoring• Use of ePortfolios• Course LibGuide of resources – All course materials available to subsequent instructors
  7. 7. WI Courses1. AE-101 APPRECIATION OF ART 15. HI-201 U.S. HISTORY I2. BS-101 BIOLOGY I 16. HI-202 U.S. HHISTORY II3. BS-102 BIOLOGY II 17. HS-204 GROUP DYNAMICS4. BS-203 MICROBIOLOGY 18. MA-101 COLLEGE MATH I5. BU-203 MARKETING 19. MA-103 BASIC STATISTICS6. CIS-101 COMP CONCEPTS & APPS 20. MU-106 APPRECIATION OF MUSIC7. CIS-202 SYSTEMS ANALYSIS & DSN 21. PH-101 INTRO TO PHILOSOPHY8. CT-101 CRITICAL THINKING 22. PL-101 INTRO POLITICAL SCIENCE9. EC-101 ECONOMICS I 23. PS-101 INTRO PSYCHOLOGY10. EN-205 INTRO TO LITERATURE 24. RL-101 COMPARATIVE RELIGION11. EN-212 HISPANIC-AMERICAN LIT 25. SC-104 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE12. ENS-106 PUBLIC SPEAKING 26. SO-101 INTRO SOCIOLOGY13. HI-101 WESTERN CIVIL I 27. SO-102 INSTITUTIONAL RACISM I14. HI-102 WESTERN CIVIL II 28. SO-202 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY
  8. 8. A writing-intensive course incorporatesdiscipline-specific writing extensively into thecourse, and the writing contributessignificantly to each student’s grade.The course content is the same as the“regular” sections of that course.What changes is not the what, but the how:pedagogy and assessment.The instructor uses writing assignments topromote the learning of the course content,as well as to increase the students’ criticalthinking and information literacy skills.Student learning is assessed to a greaterdegree by writing (rather than testing).
  9. 9. Getting the ball rolling… Ken was hired in December 2007 to start in January 2008Initial faculty were self-selected and had beeninvolved in CWC discussions.The courses were ones with a large number ofsections (Intro to Lit, Western Civ, Intro to Psych)Elizabeth was hired in Spring 2008 to start in June (along with an EducationalSpecialist and a 50% grant-funded technology support team member)
  10. 10. AT THE LAUNCH,we were piloting 3 courses -but also piloting the designapproach, assessmentmaterials and the trainingand development process.
  11. 11. What were faculty concerns?
  12. 12. Professional Development Cycle Marketing Formal 1:1 Training Informal Peer training Training
  13. 13. PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT Faculty Institutes (61 faculty)Writing Across Disciplines Days (75 faculty) Off-Campus Conferences College Writing Committee WI Roundtables Department Chairs Meetings
  14. 14. Faculty InstitutesTOPICS ADDRESSED Aligning course & Initiative goals • 14 Institutes were held Critical thinking and information • First Institute had 24 literacy for writing participants and ran 4 Rubrics (standard; instructor- created) consecutive days. Assessing writing for content and • The final 8 were 2 2-day writing (12 hours) sessions and Using informal versus formal writing had fewer than 8 faculty Creating assignments per session. Using ePortfolios • In year 3, we began to train Using the Writing Center and faculty taking over (not eTutoring http://etutoring.org Collaborative course websites developing) WI courses (using LibGuides) and training adjuncts. Incorporating media
  15. 15. • The Initiative team met with faculty prior to Institutes to review the existing syllabus and any writing assignments.• Some faculty were able to “test drive” materials in their regular sections prior to WI pilot semester.
  16. 16. The Tipping Point? Year 3 • Significant improvement in assessment results • Began developing science & math courses
  17. 17. Whatwestartedwith…
  18. 18. was continually revised along the way… “Art is never finished, only abandoned.” ~ Leonardo da Vinci Leo never received a grant – but he did rely on patrons.
  19. 19. REVISIONS INCLUDED• Course design timetable• Training process• Faculty involved (FT  more PT)• The rubrics for writing and critical thinking• FLEXIBILITY WITH REQUIREMENTS?? (e.g. paper portfolios, use of “tutoring” not just eTutoring….
  20. 20. Our Initiative has been recognizedwith the 2012 Diana Hacker Awardfor Two-Year Colleges in fosteringstudent success in writing.
  21. 21. So… whatworked?
  22. 22. Keeping the grant-built birdfeeder filled…
  23. 23. ASSESSMENT Levels and Methods•Class (student portfolios)•Program (student & faculty surveys, focus groups)•Grant (Institutional Research)
  24. 24. Data Points• Writing (using 1-12 scale based on CWE, 2 readers) • Average score 7.9% (Year 5) • Pass rate increase from 70% (don’t have Y2 data) to 81% (Year 5)• Critical Thinking Average score increase from 6 (Year 2) to 8.6 (Year 5) (1-12 scale)• Information Literacy “passing” = 56% (year 3)• College Writing Exam Pre = 68% (first attempt) to 88% (year 5) & 95% for WI cohort• Course Passing Rate (Yr 5) – 75% 78% for WI sections• 3-year Completion pre = 6% current 8.7% WI=9.3%
  25. 25. 60 % of WI faculty reported that that were using WI components inThe Ripple Effect their regular course sections
  26. 26. 6 Big Ideas
  27. 27. 1 There is no Field of Dreams.Just because you build it,doesn’t meanthey will come and play
  28. 28. When 2 Don’t Work,Writing improvement OR Technology OR Critical ThinkingOR Information Literacy? Portfolio products, paper folios, LibGuides, required e & F2F tutoring…
  29. 29. Faculty will use pedagogy/technology 3 they see how it helps themand NOT just because it helps
  30. 30. Student support is key4 guidance, scheduling, academic, technology, recognition BUT faculty also need the same support
  31. 31. Collaboration In departments, across the5 college and with other colleges and high schools
  32. 32. Is the goal6 or passing rates, retention, 3-year graduation rate…
  33. 33. Sustainability andInstitutionalizationis more thanjust funding 1. Staffing 2. Training 3. Assessment 4. Supervision 5. Leadership 6. Planning
  34. 34. Links to all our resources for the Initiative http://www.pccc.edu/home/initiative Contact info Ken kenneth.ronkowitz@njit.edu Elizabeth enesius@hccc.edu
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