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ERIC Number: ED559840
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 166
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3033-4388-9
Remembering to Teach: Writing Instruction in Disciplinary Classrooms
Kirell, Leah R.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Michigan State University
The following dissertation explores how higher education faculty members' memories of learning content and learning to write influence their pedagogical practices and examines how disciplinary and departmental contexts intersect with those pedagogical practices. The research was designed as a nested case study that draws on interview data, document analysis and classroom observation. Since the majority of higher education faculty members have little formal pedagogical training when they begin their teaching careers, most rely heavily on their memories of learning content and writing skills during their own undergraduate and graduate courses to guide their own teaching. Consequently, those memories prove to be the most salient and persistent metric on which quality teaching is judged. Three of the four teachers in this study reported that they primarily utilized techniques they valued as learners during graduate school to develop and implement lesson plans and writing assignments for their undergraduate students. Additionally, departmental and disciplinary factors were also instrumental in guiding higher education faculty's development of teaching skills and practices. Faculty, in this study, reported that their perceptions about the relative value of teaching and conducting research influenced their understanding of their jobs. Faculty also reported that, in relation to writing instruction, departmental resources (staff turnover, teacher workloads, class size and tutors) had a significant impact on the amount of time faculty were able to spend working with students to improve writing. This study's findings suggest that in order to improve student writing in multiple disciplines, faculty need greater exposure to pedagogical training and educational research to implement best practices in their classrooms. Further, the data suggests that changes to departmental culture/policies could increase teachers' willingness and ability to continually improve their pedagogical practice. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A