Thursday, January 31, 2019

Less reading, more “writing”

In The Chronicle of Higher Education, a professor argues that the solution to the problem of students not reading is to assign less reading, no more than one five-page article per class meeting:

Call me unrigorous if you like, but rethinking reading lists has reinvigorated my classroom and my students’ writing in some surprising ways. In a future post, I’ll talk about including podcasts, interactive texts, and videos as part of students’ final “writing” projects.
Less reading and more “writing.”

So odd that assigning reading and writing in a college class becomes equated with “rigor” and “virtue-signaling.” To my mind, reading and writing are just things one does in a college class. As students’ language skills decline, assigning less reading and more “writing” solves nothing.

A related post
Academically Adrift

comments: 2

Diane Schirf said...

At UofC, I signed up for classes on Russian, Latin American, etc., literature. Reading list for a quarter was usually at least a novel a week. We were forewarned about War and Peace so we could read it over the summer. And that was one course. History, etc., also required extensive reading. Imagine reading all those deep Russian and Latin American thinkers so intensely, with three other courses to worry about.

(That doesn't even get into reading Anglo-Saxon works.)

I am a very, very slow reader.

That's my story.

Michael Leddy said...

Slow — me too. When I think back to the work I did in college, I wonder how I did it. But then again, I didn’t do all that much else.