Armed with a couple of search engines, a fast modem, and a color monitor, a teacher of Web-based freshman composition will have no trouble, and a good deal of fun, assembling materials for each unit. Teachers can find an abundance of text in the public domain of hyperspace--articles, essays, columns, reviews, interviews, rants and commentaries of every stripe. But a Web-based composition class also can draw upon resources other than traditional text. Graphics, hypertext, interactive links: All these are out there on the Web, freely available for classroom use. A one-page set of Web links that can occupy a class for weeks, the equivalent of a hundred pages or more of traditional text, can be assembled single-handedly in a couple of hours, and changed and updated whenever class needs ictate--without repeated calls to the campus bookstore! The Web is particularly rich in material pertaining to technology and its uses, abuses, and implications. Some teachers may want to construct a semester revolving around such issues: A unit on electronic communities versus traditional communities, for example, could be followed by a unit examining First Amendment issues in cyberspace, or a unit examining those Cassandras who adopt a neo-Luddite position toward new technologies they deem unnecessary, wasteful, or dangerous. But plenty of Web sites and Web readings can be found for any topical issue of the day. Teachers interested in units devoted to pop culture, perennially popular with students, also are well served on the Web: The Elvis phenomenon, roadside attractions, movies and television, and so forth. This presentation will focus on a couple of Web units, and Web sites, that have proven particularly useful in the classroom, with tips for future explorations.

Presenter: Andy Duncan

Category: Classroom practice

Target Audience: Not Applicable

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