Writing

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Where Did Those Mushy “No Labels” Ideas Come From?

Jan 07, 2011 by George Leef |

In this sharp essay, Mary Grabar links the intellectually mushy "No Labels" movement to academic fads that decried logic and debate as just bad male habits.

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What’s the Value of Freshman Composition Courses?

Dec 10, 2010 by George Leef |

Here's an essay about a composition course at UNC that was a waste of time.  No student, who wanted to improve his writing, would buy a course like this in a stand-alone, free market transaction.

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A Voice from the Front Lines of the High School English Classroom

Oct 22, 2010 by |

A reader offers constructive suggestions and deepens our understanding of the reasons high school teachers don’t (and can’t) assign research papers.

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Censored Study Unearthed - Why Teachers Don’t Assign Research Papers

Oct 21, 2010 by Ashley Thorne |

The NAS has published a long-buried study on the state of the history research paper in American high schools. The 2002 study sponsored by The Concord Review (TCR) went unpublished when its benefactor,… Continue Reading | Leave a Comment >

Teaching College Students to Write

Oct 15, 2010 by George Leef |

Most college composition courses teach students "next to nothing" writes Troy Camplin in today's Pope Center piece. The problem is that most students have great deficits in their understanding of English thanks to their K-12… Continue Reading | 2 Comments >

“It Messes Up My Fishing Time”: Why American High School Teachers Don’t…

Oct 14, 2010 by Peter Wood |

NAS brings to light a long-suppressed research report on how American high school teachers avoid assigning research papers.

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What Has Become of Freshman Comp?

Sep 13, 2010 by George Leef |

That is the question Professor Robert V. Young of North Carolina State answers in this Pope Center piece we released last week. Back when he taught the course in the 1970s, it was like boot camp for college students who needed… Continue Reading | 2 Comments >

Freshman Comp Ain’t What She Used to Be

Aug 02, 2010 by George Leef |

We hear a lot of chatter about how it's so vital that we get more young Americans through college because college teaches them the "higher skills" that the globalized "knowledge economy" demands. I think that's baloney.… Continue Reading | Leave a Comment >

In Memoriam

Jul 12, 2010 by David Clemens |

Most good teachers had a model. Robert Pinsky had Francis Ferguson; Mark Edmundson had Frank Lears. I was lucky; I had two. My Freshman Comp. teacher was Dr. Idelle Sullens, a Stanford-trained medievalist specializing in 14th… Continue Reading | Leave a Comment >

Freedom from Bad Academic Writing

Apr 26, 2010 by Jonathan Bean |

The following column on George Orwell's advice to free students from bad academic writing is worth reading:

http://chronicle.com/article/Bad-WritingBad-Thinking/65031/?sid=ja&utm_source=ja&utm_medium=en
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The Philomath Speaks: An Interview with Anu Garg

Dec 15, 2009 by Ashley Thorne, Peter Wood |

"Words are like air — they are all around us even though we can't see them, and they are just as essential," says Anu Garg, creator of Wordsmith.org.

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Squeezing the Grapefruit

Dec 07, 2009 by Ashley Thorne |

NAS president Peter Wood’s book review of Stylized: A Slightly Obsessive History of Strunk & White's The Elements of Style, is linked on Arts and Letters Daily.

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On the Beauty of Formal Grammar

Nov 04, 2009 by Ashley Thorne |

A charming blog on our blogroll, Quiddity - created by the Center for Independent Research on Classical Education (CiRCE) - has an excellent post on the beauty of formally-taught grammar. Author Andrew Kern, CiRCE president… Continue Reading | Leave a Comment >

Politics as Pedagogy?

Oct 08, 2009 by Ashley Thorne |

At Critical Mass, Erin O’Connor has an excellent take on a professor’s recent article justifying her use of the classroom for political activism. Professor Gemma Puglisi, who teaches a writing course at the… Continue Reading | Leave a Comment >

Acres of Rhinestones: Temple Betrays Its Heritage

Jul 01, 2009 by Stephen Zelnick |

This article by Stephen Zelnick recounting Temple University's departure from the Great Conversation appeared in the "Case Studies in Academic Malady" issue of Academic Questions (vol. 22, no. 3).

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