Looking to Session 2

This week’s challenge is to create active learning activities to use in Session 2.

Here at The University of Alabama, our instructional program for First Year Writing Students is separated into two sessions. The first is Finding and Using Search Terms and the second is Evaluating Sources. Louise, Alex and Karlie have been challenged each week to design activities to use in the sessions, with a narrow focus on one aspect of these topics.

Our sessions focus on narrow learning outcomes. We try to limit the learning outcomes to 3 for each session. Our departmental outcomes for session 2 are:

  • Distinguish difference types of resources in order to select relevant and reliable sources
  • Locate articles and books in print and electronic format in order to retrieve diverse types of sources.

When we talk to students about evaluating sources, there are two conversations that we have with them.

We talk about setting standards- what are the standards that a source has to meet in order to be included in your body of research? What caliber source do you need in order to support your argument? Will you need to use scholarly articles? Primary sources? Or are popular sources good enough?

The other conversation is about a source itself- how do you critique or measure the value of a source? How do you review your source? Who is the author? Do you need to do some background research on them to make sure they know what they’re talking about? What gives them ground to talk about this topic? And what is the source origin? Is it peer reviewed? Did it have publication and editorial standards? What kind of reputation does it have?

So far, we’ve been seeing a lot of creative activities. Anything from small group work to game show style games. I am looking forward to seeing what comes out of this challenge, and I hope the activities will be blogged about afterwards!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.