Effective Composition Instruction: Washington State Community College Instructors Respond.Report as inadecuate




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To determine what traits characterize instructors who enjoy the greatest success in teaching composition to community college students, a questionnaire was sent to 17 community colleges throughout Washington State. Chairpersons were asked to give the questionnaire to those instructors they considered most effective in teaching freshman composition courses; 38 surveys were returned representing 14 community colleges. In the survey, questions 1-4 solicited information about each instructor's educational and professional background; question 5 asked instructors to characterize an effective composition instructor; questions 6-11 asked how instructors identify and help students with various backgrounds, abilities and motivations; questions 12-15 solicited responses concerning factors that promote and hinder student success; and question 16 allowed instructors to add additional insights not covered in their responses. The survey revealed that many instructors bring both secondary and university-level teaching experience to their community college teaching. Furthermore, since respondents averaged 12.8 years of community college teaching experience, their responses reflect significant years "in the system." Significantly, the majority of community college composition instructors (60%) felt poorly prepared by their undergraduate and graduate studies to teach college composition. Few had courses that specifically addressed how composition should be taught. Most instructors believe that for a composition instructor to be effective he or she must have a superb knowledge base and a deep commitment to the importance of teaching writing. Instructors recognized distinct differences between students that succeed and students who are at-risk. The survey instrument is included. (TB)

Descriptors: College English, Community Colleges, Instructional Effectiveness, Rhetoric, School Surveys, Teacher Education, Teacher Effectiveness, Teaching Methods, Teaching Styles, Two Year Colleges, Writing Instruction











Author: Loucks, Scott Douglas

Source: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=10401&id=ED384881







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