Matching Items (13)

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The invention of transformative agency: collaborative inquiry as graduate-level mentoring

Description

This dissertation examines collaborative inquiry as a form of graduate mentoring. To investigate this issue, I analyze the research and writing process of a team of five multilingual graduate students

This dissertation examines collaborative inquiry as a form of graduate mentoring. To investigate this issue, I analyze the research and writing process of a team of five multilingual graduate students and their mentor as they collaboratively design, implement, and report a study based in their local writing program over the course of two years. Through a qualitative activity analysis of team meetings, participant interviews, and the team’s written drafts and email correspondence, I investigate the ways in which self-sponsored, team-based collaborative research and writing supports participants’ learning and development of a professional identity.

Key findings show that unanticipated obstacles in the research context present participants with “real-world” dilemmas that call forth disciplinary alignments, reinforce existing disciplinary practices, and, most importantly, generate new practices altogether. An example of this process is reflected in the research team's frequent need to adjust their research design as a result of constraints within the research environment. The team's ability to pivot in response to such constraints encouraged individual members to view the research enterprise as dynamic and fluid, leading ultimately to a heightened sense of agency and stronger awareness of the rhetorical challenges and opportunities posed by empirical research. Similarly, participants’ demonstrated an ability to recognize and resolve tensions stemming from competing demands on their time and attention during the course of their graduate study. Actively constructing resonances across various domains of their graduate worlds—coursework, teaching, and non-curricular research and professionalization activities—served to clarify purposes and increase motivation.

An additional aspect of this study is the way graduate students leverage their language resources in the collaborative process. This dissertation extends the disciplinary conversation by investigating ways in which language resources function as rhetorical tools within the research context. This focus on language, in concert with collaboration and rhetorical stances to inquiry, challenges persistent views of authorship, apprenticeship, and language norms, while simultaneously lending insight into how graduate students invent new ways of participating in their professional worlds.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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Making space for women's history: the digital-material rhetoric of the National Women's History (cyber)Museum

Description

The struggle of the National Women’s History Museum (NWHM) to make space for women’s history in the United States is in important ways emblematic of the struggle for recognition and

The struggle of the National Women’s History Museum (NWHM) to make space for women’s history in the United States is in important ways emblematic of the struggle for recognition and status of American women as a whole. Working at the intersections of digital-material memory production and using the NWHM as a focus, this dissertation examines the significance of the varied strategies used by and contexts among which the NWHM and entities like it negotiate for digital, material, and rhetorical space within U.S. public memory production. As a “cybermuseum,” the NWHM functions within national public memory production at the intersections of material and digital culture; yet as an activist institution in search of a permanent, physical “home” for women’s history, the NWHM also counterproductively reifies existing gendered norms that make such an achievement difficult. By examining selected aspects of this complexly situated entity, this dissertation makes visible the gendered nature of public memory production, the digital and material components of that production, and the hybrid nature of emerging public memory entities which operate simultaneously in multiple spheres. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach and guided by Carole Blair’s work on rhetorical materiality, this dissertation explores key aspects of the NWHM’s process of becoming, including an examination of the centrality of the interpellation of publics to the rhetorical materiality of public discourse; an analysis of the material state of public memory production in national history museums in the U.S.; and an exploration of the embodied engagement that undergirds all interaction with and presentation of historical artifacts and narratives, whether digital, physical or both at once. In a synthesis of findings, this dissertation describes a set of key characteristics through which certain hybrid digital-material entities (including the NWHM) enact increasingly complex variations of rhetorical agency. These characteristics suggest a need for a more flexible analytic framework, described in the final chapter. This framework takes shape as an heuristic of functions across which digital-material entities always already enact a situated, active, embodied, and simultaneous agency, one that can account fully for the rhetorical processes through which space is “made” for women in U.S. public memory.

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Date Created
  • 2017

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Scholarly Re-vision: Using Burkean Frames as a Heuristic for Iterative Narrative Reflection and Practice

Description

This dissertation develops a heuristic—one I call the iterative narrative reflection framework—for rhetorically engaged, data-driven teacherly theory building using Kenneth Burke’s frames of acceptance and rejection. Teacher-scholars regularly develop curricula

This dissertation develops a heuristic—one I call the iterative narrative reflection framework—for rhetorically engaged, data-driven teacherly theory building using Kenneth Burke’s frames of acceptance and rejection. Teacher-scholars regularly develop curricula and lesson plans informed by theory and prior experience, but the daily practice of teaching and learning with students rarely plays out as expected. In many cases, institutional constraints and the unpredictable lives of students interact with teachers’ plans in surprising and sometimes confounding ways. Teachers typically make sense of such challenges by constructing post-hoc narratives about what happened and why, attributing motives and agencies to other participants in ways that suggest how to respond, move forward, and get back on track. Whether such narratives are part of a deliberate practice of reflection or an informal and largely unnoticed mental process, they are rarely thought of as constructed accounts and therefore as rhetorical acts that can be subjected to serious review, criticism, and revision. Yet these stories are shaped by familiar genre conventions that influence interpretations of events and motives in ways that may or may not serve well as teachers consider how best to respond to unfolding events. Using the iterative narrative reflection framework to guide my analysis of my own teacherly narratives through multiple layers of reflection and criticism, I demonstrate across the dissertation’s three cases how such deliberate, methodical analysis can reveal tacit assumptions and additional interpretive possibilities. Ultimately, such a process of iterative reflection enables the teacher-scholar to choose from among a wider range of available means of persuasion and pedagogical possibilities.

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Date Created
  • 2019

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Collaboration, affirmation, and the declaration of content for the discipline of writing

Description

This project emphasizes a complex, holistic, and additive view of content knowledge in the Discipline of Writing, advocating for balanced and affirming scholarship and pedagogy rather than a competitive approach

This project emphasizes a complex, holistic, and additive view of content knowledge in the Discipline of Writing, advocating for balanced and affirming scholarship and pedagogy rather than a competitive approach that leads to an epistemology of erasure. As a composite project, the introduction contextualizes three articles linked by their articulation of holistically and additively thinking for students and scholars in the discipline of writing, preparing the reader to see the rhetorical steps that I attempt to take in each article along these lines. Article 1, “The Collaborative Work of Composition,” uses Marxian language of production to highlight the complexities of collaborative writing in a social microcosm drawing focus to the difficulties some students have collaborating, particularly those of linguistic and cultural minority groups, because they or their collaborators struggle to adopt an additive valuing system to position themselves and one another as part of a team with varying strengths. In Article 2, “An Integrative Translingual Pedagogy of Affirmation,” I build on this valuing of writers by advocating for an affirming pedagogy that allows teachers to help students see the complexity and value of their shared languages and their individual (L)anguage as well as the identity connected to these. Article 3, “Familia Académica: Translingual History and the Epistemology of Erasure,” draws on a deep and overlooked history that provides a more complex holistic lens for the current socio-politics of the discipline of Writing’s interaction with the translingual approach, re-orienting to a more additive blend of the extreme perspectives that key scholars have taken between second language writing and translingual writing. Finally, the last section of the dissertation acts as a metaconstruction of the discipline of Writing, pointing to moments within the previous three articles that indicate a sustained effort to complicate binaries and then provide an alternate symbiosis of scholarly perspectives for disciplinary discourse and identity in Writing. Most importantly though, the final section of the dissertation synthesizes the partial approaches introduced in the previous three articles which inform my understanding of disciplinarity. Further, this final section attempts to find equity in the variety of partial approaches developed in the previous articles and which I have since matured into what I call the 8 Aspects of Writing. The 8 aspects and their components move beyond individual issues presented in each article and synthesize a more holistic, additive, and systematic model of defining the content knowledge for the discipline of Writing.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Composing Facebook: digital literacy and incoming writing transfer in first-year composition

Description

Most new first-year composition (FYC) students already have a great deal of writing experience. Much of this experience comes from writing in digital spaces, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and

Most new first-year composition (FYC) students already have a great deal of writing experience. Much of this experience comes from writing in digital spaces, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. This type of writing is often invisible to students: they may not consider it to be writing at all. This dissertation seeks to better understand the actual connections between writing in online spaces and writing in FYC, to see the connections students see between these types of writing, and to work toward a theory for making use of those connections in the FYC classroom. The following interconnected articles focus specifically on Facebook--the largest and most ubiquitous social network site (SNS)-- as a means to better understand students' digital literacy practices.

Initial data was gathered through a large-scale survey of FYC students about their Facebook use and how they saw that use as connected to composition and writing. Chapter 1 uses the data to suggest that FYC students are not likely to see a connection between Facebook and FYC but that such a connection exists. The second chapter uses the same data to demonstrate that men and women are approaching Facebook slightly differently and to explore what that may mean for FYC teachers. The third chapter uses 10 one-on-one interviews with FYC students to further explore Facebook literacies. The interviews suggest that the literacy of Facebook is actually quite complex and includes many modes of communication in addition to writing, such as pictures, links, and "likes." The final chapter explores the issue of transfer. While transfer is popular in composition literature, studies tend to focus on forward-reading and not backward-reaching transfer. This final chapter stresses the importance of this type of transfer, especially when looking back at digital literacy knowledge that students have gained through writing online.

While these articles are intended as stand-alone pieces, together they demonstrate the complex nature of literacies on Facebook, how they connection to FYC, and how FYC teachers may use them in their classrooms. They serve as a starting off point for discussions of effective integration of digital literacies into composition pedagogies.

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Date Created
  • 2014

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A community of second language writing at Arizona State University: an institutional ethnography

Description

This project is an institutional ethnography (Smith, 2005, 2006) that examines the lived experiences of nine second language (L2) writing teachers, specifically with regard to the interpersonal, material, and spatial

This project is an institutional ethnography (Smith, 2005, 2006) that examines the lived experiences of nine second language (L2) writing teachers, specifically with regard to the interpersonal, material, and spatial relationships inherent in their work. Using interviews, focus groups, and a mapping heuristic for data collection, the study investigates the current culture of L2 writing that is (or is not) created within this specialized community of practice (Lave & Wenger, 1991) and the individual participant motivations as actors within a complex and dynamic network (Latour, 2007). Because findings from the study are relevant for a variety of fields and audiences, the dissertation is separated into three freestanding but interrelated articles.

Article one focuses on the data of one participant whose teaching roles/ranks in the writing program shifted over time: from graduate teaching associate to part-time adjunct faculty member to full-time non-tenure track writing instructor. Article two uses all nine participants’ data and focuses on their perceptions of and experiences with L2-specific teacher training. Results share the perceived benefits and drawbacks of teacher training to specialize in working with multilingual student populations considering various material conditions present in the institution. In addition, the article locates additional programmatic spaces where professionalization happens (or can happen), and ultimately assesses and questions the justification of specialization of teachers within the writing program and where that specialization can/should occur. Article three reflects on a specific data collection technique—a mapping heuristic—and discusses the ways in which this method is beneficial, not only for observing the different connections that L2 writing teachers create in their work lives, but also for collecting data in any institutional ethnographic study.

While these three articles are intended to be independent of one another, together they comprise a dissertation-length institutional ethnographic inquiry that demonstrates the diverse voices, motivations, and experiences of second language writing teachers that inform the decisions made in an institution known as a writing program. WPAs can use the knowledge and takeaways gained in the study to learn more about how to support and advocate for this important stakeholder group.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016

Re-seeing composition: object oriented reflective teaching practice

Description

This dissertation presents reflective teaching practices that draw from an object-oriented rhetorical framework. In it, practices are offered that prompt teachers and students to account for the interdependent relationships between

This dissertation presents reflective teaching practices that draw from an object-oriented rhetorical framework. In it, practices are offered that prompt teachers and students to account for the interdependent relationships between objects and writers. These practices aid in re-envisioning writing as materially situated and leads to more thoughtful collaborations between writers and objects.

Through these practices, students gain a more sophisticated understanding of their own writing processes, teachers gain a more nuanced understanding of the outcomes of their pedagogical choices, and administrators gain a clearer vision of how the classroom itself affects curriculum design and implementation. This argument is pursued in several chapters, each presenting a different method for inciting reflection through the consideration of human/object interaction.

The first chapter reviews the literature of object oriented rhetorical theory and reflective teaching practice. The second chapter adapts a methodology from the field of Organizational Science called Narrative Network Analysis (NNA) and leads students through a process of identifying and describing human/object interaction within narratives and asks students to represent these relationships visually. As students undertake this task they can more objectively examine their own writing processes. In the third chapter, video ethnographic methodologies are used to observe object oriented rhetoric theory in practice through the interactions of humans and objects in the writing classroom. Through three video essays, clips of footage taken of a writing classroom and its writing objects are selected and juxtaposed to highlight the agency and influence of objects. In chapter four, a tool developed using freely available cloud-based web applications is presented which is termed the “Fitness Tracker for Teaching.” This tool is used to regularly collect, store, and analyze data that students self-report through a daily class survey about their work efforts, their work environment, and their feelings of confidence, productivity, and self-efficacy. The data gathered through this tool provides a more complete understanding of student effort and affect than could be provided by the teacher’s and students’ own memories or perceptions. Together these chapters provide a set of reflective practices that reinforce teaching writing as a process that is affective and embodied and acknowledges and accounts for the rhetorical agency of objects.

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Date Created
  • 2017

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Bringing-before-the-eyes: visuality and audience in Greek rhetoric

Description

"Bringing-before-the-eyes": Visuality and Audience in Greek Rhetoric examines how Greek rhetorical theories are understood through the lens of visuality and the ways in which orators accounted for audience knowledges and

"Bringing-before-the-eyes": Visuality and Audience in Greek Rhetoric examines how Greek rhetorical theories are understood through the lens of visuality and the ways in which orators accounted for audience knowledges and expectations in the creation of rhetorical texts and performances. Through a close reading of Greek rhetorical texts from the classical period, I develop three heuristics for analyzing the ways in which rhetoricians invite and encourage visualized images through rhetorical practice.

By exploring (1) language cues that orators use to signal visualization, (2) the ways in which shared cultural memories and ideas allow orators to call upon standardized images, and (3) the influence of stylistic choices and audience emotions related to the vividness of rhetorical images, I argue that it is possible to analyze the ways in which classical Greek orators understood and employed visual elements in their rhetorical performances. I then conduct an analysis of the visual aspects of Demosthenes' On the Embassy using these heuristics to demonstrate the ways in which these three aspects of visuality are intertwined and contribute to a greater understanding of the relationship between the verbal and the visual in rhetorical theory.

My findings indicate that Greek orators readily identified the influence of visual ways of knowing on rhetorical theory and presented early hypotheses of the ways in which sense perceptions affect social practice. This project complicates the ways in which rhetorical theory is categorized. Rather than considering visual rhetoric as a distinct field from traditional, verbal text-based rhetorical studies, this project explores the ways in which visual and verbal modes of thinking are interconnected in Greek rhetorical theory. By bridging these two areas of rhetorical study and arguing that verbal rhetoric can instantiate internalized, visual phenomena for audiences, the dichotomy of verbal and visual is problematized. By focusing on the rhetorical theory of classical Greece, this project also invites future research into the ways in which dominant, Western historic and contemporary systems of epistemology are influenced by the co-mingling of verbal and visual in classical Greek philosophy and education.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Attack of the fake geek girls: challenging gendered harassment and marginalization in online spaces

Description

Attack of the Fake Geek Girls: Challenging Gendered Harassment and Marginalization in Online Spaces applies feminist, gender, and rhetorical theories and methods, along with critical discourse analysis, to case studies

Attack of the Fake Geek Girls: Challenging Gendered Harassment and Marginalization in Online Spaces applies feminist, gender, and rhetorical theories and methods, along with critical discourse analysis, to case studies of the popular online social media platforms of Jezebel, Pinterest, and Facebook. This project makes visible the structural inequities that underpin the design and development of internet technologies, as well as commonplace assumptions about who is an online user, who is an active maker of internet technologies, and who is a passive consumer of internet technologies. Applying these critical lenses to these inequities and assumptions enables a re-seeing of commonplace understandings of the relationship between gender performativity and digital cultures and practices. Together, these lenses provide a useful set of tools for methodically resisting the mystique of technologies that are, simultaneously, represented as so highly technical as to be opaque to scrutiny, and as ubiquitous to everyday life as to be beneath critical examination.

Through a close reading of the discourses surrounding these popular social media platforms and a rhetorical analysis of their technological affordances, I documented the transference of gender-biased assumptions about women's roles, interests, and competencies, which have historically been found in face-to-face contexts, to these digital spaces. For example, cultural assumptions about the frivolity of women's interests, endeavors, issues, and labors make their way into digital discourse that situates the online practices of women as those of passive consumers who use the internet only to shop and socialize, rather than to go about the serious, masculine business of making original digital content.

This project expands on existing digital identity and performativity research, while applying a sorely needed feminist critique to online discourses and discursive practices that assume maleness and masculinity as the default positionality. These methods are one approach to addressing the pressing problems of online harassment, the gender gap in the technology sector, and the gender gap in digital literacies that have pedagogical, political, and structural implications for the classroom, workplace, economic markets, and civic sphere.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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Presenting ASU's ethos: Old Main as a seat of argument

Description

Scholarship on the rhetoric of place and space provides ample precedent for the study of structures as rhetorical texts; real and imagined places which convey meaning or memory, particularly monuments,

Scholarship on the rhetoric of place and space provides ample precedent for the study of structures as rhetorical texts; real and imagined places which convey meaning or memory, particularly monuments, memorials, and museums have been extensively studied, but loci of identity and history in institutions of higher education are under- examined. The following analysis of Arizona State University's Old Main building seeks to fill a gap in the study of place and space. As an entity which produces its own powerful discourses, Arizona State University expresses its historicity and institutional goals through varied and numerous media, but Old Main is one of the most critical, for the structure acts as an ethical proof in ASU's argument for its character, endurance, and worth. This examination addresses how ASU's ethos is articulated through the experiences of Old Main's past and current users, the instructional historical texts and artifacts displayed in the structure, the way that the building is mediated by ASU discourses, and the agency of the edifice itself. This work endeavors to answer Henri Lefebvre's call to improve widespread understanding of spaces as texts and their dialogue with users, and builds on the work of Carol Blair, Richard P. Dober, Diane Favro, and Bruno Latour, as well as that of Henri Lefebvre. To provide full context, this analysis integrates scholarship from the disciplines of campus planning, architecture, classical rhetoric, and the rhetoric of place and space.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014