Lesson Plan: Teaching Context with Video Creation

Justin Hatch

Lesson Plans

Undergraduate students sometimes have trouble leveraging historical context to the end of persuasion. Reasons for this include that they may not see contextualizing (including the use of historical context) as a discrete and substantial task worthy of the same creative intellectual effort given the construction of arguments. That contextualizing is sometimes taught as just one of several tasks to accomplish in an introduction that precedes the real rhetorical work of argumentation can exacerbate the problem. This assignment attempts to remedy

Lesson Plan: Analyzing and (Re)Performing Vocality

Matt Breece

Lesson Plans

As rhetoric and composition instructors, we typically have students work with written texts, both in analysis and in production. While we might ask students to answer questions about tone and prosody in written texts, often their analyses remained confined to stylistic concerns without attending to questions of delivery. What gets overlooked in this assignment mainstay is the possibility of analyzing oral texts for delivery, affect, and vocality. Yet Erin Anderson notes that with contemporary mediated technologies, “this notion of voice-as-effect becomes

Lesson Plan: Visualizing The News As A Timeline

Ansley Colclough

Lesson Plans

In today’s information economy, the abundance and production pace of information can make it difficult to follow news coverage of any given topic or event. Whether you are comparing different coverage of the same topic by more than one news source, tracking coverage of a topic in a single source over a period of time, or following a single news source in order to track popularity of topics, data visualization can help identify and neatly summarize trends and patterns, or

Lesson Plan: Soundscape Narration

Michael O'Brien

Lesson Plans

With audio technology becoming both more advanced and also more affordable, the options for understanding and exploring the ways in which sound and image interact with one another are becoming ever more practically available. Historically, many film directors have been fascinated with the possibilities of different approaches to the use of sound in their work. Famed Soviet director Sergei Eisenstein saw the possibility of a sound-film conflict, one that could create new meanings not inherent to either component individually. French

Lesson Plan: Genre and Music

Kevin Schaeffner

Lesson Plans

In Carolyn Miller’s foundational text in Rhetorical Genre Studies, “Genre as Social Action,” (1984) she asserts the utility in studying “homely discourses.” Examining the quotidian genres we interact with on a daily basis does not “trivialize the study of genres,” Miller states, but it actually “take[s] seriously the rhetoric in which we find ourselves immersed.” This assignment encourages students to take seriously the rhetorical considerations of a non-literary genre that they often encounter: popular music. Music critic and historian David

Sounding Images and Imaging Sound

Justin Hatch

Lesson Plans

Image and code from wired.com Ferdinand Saussure provided a framework and vocabulary that can be applied in composition classrooms to understand the “arbitrary” nature of representational forms including sound and image. He famously gave us the vocabulary of semiotics including the “signifier” and “signified” within a framework that leaves meaning as a function of context. By having students explore image and sound as both signified and signifier, this lesson plan demonstrates for students the complexity of representation and meaning-making when

Lesson Plan: Failure Interviews

Marnie Ritchie

Lesson Plans

Image Public Domain, Flickr The goal of this lesson is for students to interview someone who has failed at something—in a small or large, invisible or spectacular way. Typically, when we conduct interviews, we target experts within a field who can dispense some knowledge for our imagined audience. For this lesson plan, students collapse the hierarchy of knowing-subject-to-unknowing-audience. Failure is often hidden from others; it does not show up in our resumes, and it is difficult to disclose in public

Lesson Plan: PlayStation VR

J Brentlinger

Lesson Plans

This lesson plan is an easy one to conduct: let your students play with the PlayStation 4 VR suite from the DWRL, and then encourage them to talk about the experience! Sounds simple, right? It is! But the scholarship the lesson produces is anything BUT simple. Interacting with this lesson allows students to engage with many areas of scholarship. Examples include: The following lesson plan uses Isbister’s book as an example. This lesson challenges students to experience something new (Virtual

Wearables Lesson Plan: Yelp

Reinhard Mueller

Lesson Plans

This is a picture of the Yelp logo with a symbolic scale in the background indicating the lawsuits against Yelp. The picture is mostly in red, the scale in the background is in black. The letters and the Yelp logo are mostly in white.

Yelp is a virtual marketplace that has been shaping our spatial orientation for many years, since it was founded in 2004 and has increasingly expanded worldwide since 2009. Despite its vast impact on our daily life, its digital rhetoric has hardly been researched and is usually taken for granted without further critical awareness. In a 2013 survey, the Boston Consulting Group found that only 15% of 4,800 interviewed small business knew that they had a free Yelp profile and that

Lesson Plan: Filter Bubbles

Shaherzad Ahmadi

Lesson Plans

We constantly consume media — whether television, internet, or radio. According to Pew, a whopping 62% of adults get their news from social media. This is troubling, considering the pervasive filter bubble; depending on our interests, social media and search engines filter their results to match our preferences. Hence the bubble. The Wall Street Journal has illustrated this phenomenon. Why does this matter? The media we consume can define almost every aspect of our lives — from who we associate