Presentation Title

Studying Pedagogy of Transfer in UNO’s First-year Writing Program

Presenter Information

Amanda HayworthFollow

Advisor Information

Margarette Christensen

Presentation Type

Poster

Start Date

26-3-2021 12:00 AM

End Date

26-3-2021 12:00 AM

Abstract

As a new composition instructor and teaching assistant, I was introduced to Composition as one of three “fundamental academic skills,” required of all students in order to graduate. These competencies are deemed fundamental – or foundational – to every one of my university’s undergraduate programs; therefore, the often-understated goal of this first-year writing program, then, is for students to be able to transfer the knowledge and skills they learn in their writing classes to the rest of their university career. In an attempt to understand how my colleagues address my university’s desire for transfer, I designed a study that used both quantitative surveys and qualitative interviews that examined composition instructors’ goals of transfer, their pedagogical methods, and both their successful and unsuccessful attempts of transfer. Using the data from the composition instructors at my university as a case study, I have several recommendations to prepare students for future writing exigencies and adequately guide students in igniting transfer. I advise that instructors make transfer an explicit goal of their course, practice empirically tested transfer pedagogy, and advocate for transfer-focused objectives within their own institutions. Instructors must encourage students to enact their own agency and use their writing skills and knowledge to become effective communicators in various situations through diversified means of metacognition. By explicitly valuing transfer and following transfer-based pedagogy, as instructors, we can better help our students understand the larger applications of first-year writing, helping them to see how they can extend what they learn beyond the composition classroom and beyond academia.

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Mar 26th, 12:00 AM Mar 26th, 12:00 AM

Studying Pedagogy of Transfer in UNO’s First-year Writing Program

As a new composition instructor and teaching assistant, I was introduced to Composition as one of three “fundamental academic skills,” required of all students in order to graduate. These competencies are deemed fundamental – or foundational – to every one of my university’s undergraduate programs; therefore, the often-understated goal of this first-year writing program, then, is for students to be able to transfer the knowledge and skills they learn in their writing classes to the rest of their university career. In an attempt to understand how my colleagues address my university’s desire for transfer, I designed a study that used both quantitative surveys and qualitative interviews that examined composition instructors’ goals of transfer, their pedagogical methods, and both their successful and unsuccessful attempts of transfer. Using the data from the composition instructors at my university as a case study, I have several recommendations to prepare students for future writing exigencies and adequately guide students in igniting transfer. I advise that instructors make transfer an explicit goal of their course, practice empirically tested transfer pedagogy, and advocate for transfer-focused objectives within their own institutions. Instructors must encourage students to enact their own agency and use their writing skills and knowledge to become effective communicators in various situations through diversified means of metacognition. By explicitly valuing transfer and following transfer-based pedagogy, as instructors, we can better help our students understand the larger applications of first-year writing, helping them to see how they can extend what they learn beyond the composition classroom and beyond academia.