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Category Archive for 'travel'

My summer was marked by several events. First, I spent three weeks working with a faculty group looking at examples of student writing from the class of 2010. To do so, we worked collaboratively to create a rubric to assess college-level writing. The rubric-making process was as enlightening as the information we gleaned from the assessments.  The faculty members came from various disciplines–literature, film, math, foreign language, and political science.  Ironically, my assessments were closest to those of the math professor!  Second, we presented some of our findings at the 22nd International Conference on The First-Year Experience in Montréal (July 23, 2009).

Jane Austen's house in Chawton

Jane Austen's house in Chawton

In June I took a longed-for trip to England with my younger daughter to visit Jane Austen sites.  I hope to write more about this trip later. (In a few weeks, I will be on leave and will be immersed in all Austen all-the-time), but here are a very few of the over 3,000 pics I took on my trip.

This fall, I’ve spent most of my professional time tutoring writing, an experience I have thoroughly enjoyed. I have some thoughts about the process of turning good high school writers into good college writers that I hope to write about once the semester is over. Another thing that has filled my time is Middlebury’s  Web Redo project. With two other colleagues, I’ve been working on the four sites for our offices (Center for Teaching, Learning, and Research; Office of Learning Resources; Writing Program, and First-Year Seminar Program).  I’m not linking here because the old sites will disappear, and the new ones aren’t ready yet.  I’m saving my opinion of Drupal until the process is complete.  I’m guessing when the process is finally  complete, all the work and frustrations will have been well worth the effort.  Stay tuned.

The National Resource Center 21st International Conference on

The First Year Experience

Dublin Ireland

June 23-26, 2008


FYS as a Locus for Faculty Development: Creating Mini Learning Communities



NITLE-sponsored Social Software Users’ Group at the College of Wooster (Ohio) January 2006.

Among many great conversations that took place at SSUG, one stands out for me. It concerned the different ways faculty and librarians look at copyright issues–especially for multi media projects. Faculty tend to look at what’s best for my class, my students; whereas, librarians tend to look at what’s better for the institution. Emotions rose–even in this very genial group–around this issue, but we all left more respectful of the issues our colleagues face, so thanks again, Barbara, for dragging me along!

On the Road Again

Barbara presenting at SS

Originally uploaded by mebertolini.

Few people could convince me to fly from Vermont to Ohio in January, but bg is one of them.
Lucky for me, or I never would have found myself at the College of Wooster for the NITLE Social Software Users Group. One of the great things about this group is the blend of faculty, IT professionals and librarians present and the respect and collegiality between all these players. After a few days there, I felt like a child passed out under the Christmas Tree, exhausted from playing with new toys: Wikis,
Peanut Gallery,
Skype, and
on and

Around and About

I’ve a long list of things I have been meaning to blog about: my students’ mid term portfolios, the i-movies they made based on Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park, the Regency Dinner Dance I’ ve planned for my seminar tomorrow night, but travel and midsemester business have slowed me down. In October, a trip to the lake in Massachusetts lake.jpggave me an opportunity to shoot pictures I used for demo i-movies to introduce the software and techniques for using it with my class. I stole this idea from bg who demonstrated the use of different music tracks with images in her class this fall.

During the first part of the semester, weekly lunches with faculty kept us hopping, but provided us with the opportunity to share ideas about teaching writing.

In November, a trip to beautiful Sewanee, the University of the South Sewanee.jpg left us full of new ideas and a deep appreciation for another part of the country and a gentler way of life.

More blogging will come on the topics mentioned above, but now I need to find my dancing shoes for tomorrow night.dance.jpg

On our way!

Barbara Ganley. Eugene Lee, Piya Kashyap, and I are off to this conference in May: Social Software in the Academy Workshop. I plan to be talking about my experience with blog journals in my Writing to Heal class last spring as well as an indpendent course I’m teaching on the same topic this spring.

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