Instruction for Intro to Writing Course

Today I had the opportunity to be a part of an instruction session for an ENG 102 Intro to Writing class. It was different from my previous instruction experience. The session began with a discussion of research topics and narrowing broad topics down to a more specific topic. The final assignment for this particular class was a 1,500 word research paper, so their topics needed to be specific enough for them to be able to thoroughly cover in only 1,500 words. After they narrowed down their topics, the discussion moved on to choosing keywords to use in a search and everyone came up with 3 or 4 keywords relevant to their topic. After they had their keywords, we then talked about boolean operators, including the functions of AND, OR, and NOT. A Venn diagram drawn on the white board was used as a visual aide to demonstrate the functions and differences between the different operators. The students then had an opportunity to come up with their own search strings using the keywords they had come up with and their new knowledge of the boolean operators. At the end of the session they had the opportunity to use their search strings they had developed to search Scout, the university’s main online database. I loved how the lesson was designed, where it took the students step-by-step through the process of creating a search for their research paper, starting with coming up with a topic and ending with searching Scout with a search string they had developed for their individual topic. Overall, it was a great experience and I look forward to the class returning next week!

Jennifer

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