My teaching is rooted in the philosophy that theory, discourse, and praxis should be co-equal in the classroom, a philosophy that is particularly important in digital humanities courses where critical making must be paired with critical inquiry in order to be effective. I teach courses ranging from introductory methods courses to writing and communication, from introductory thematic programs to literature and drama surveys, and from media studies to digital rhetoric and design. In these courses, I have established a rigorous yet accessible environment designed to maximize student involvement in the subject matter. In today’s society, where knowledge is increasingly defined by practical, applicable and manageable skills, my primary motivation for teaching is to provide a balance to this social development. As a specialist in literary and cultural studies, I center my teaching approach upon the objective of providing students access to abstract thinking, thereby formulating a deeper philosophical understanding of current cultural issues. My aim is to demonstrate that the skills developed in Humanities courses are crucial to responsible participation as global citizens, as well as to any post-graduate employment experiences.
- Digging into the Digital (Digital Humanities Methods). Beginning in 2014, I have taught a course I co-developed as the foundation course for students taking the DH minor at Bucknell. Using a corpus of archival materials (2014/2019 – life papers of 19th century Bucknell graduate; 2015 – 1600 black-letter text of “Tarlton’s Jests” and data about 16th century English touring actors; 2017 – contemporary newspaper articles and police statements from murder case in 1922 Hollywood; 2020 – Hamilton: the Musical) students learn:
- to perform differential reading through TEI and text analysis;
- to create social network visualizations, and spatial thinking;
- to identify, use, and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of different DH methodologies and tools;
- to develop sound research questions that can be addressed using these methods; e) and to create DH projects using the tools taught in the course, articulating and assessing the success (or failure) of a humanities research project involving DH methods.
- Special honors section of first-year composition and research skills course. In spring 2013 I taught a special section of English 1102, the core first-year composition and research skills course at Georgia Tech. This section was directed at honors students in computer science (CS) and computational media (CM) academic streams. The course was designed to better ground CS and CM majors in the rhetorical framework of digital media that they produce and consume. Interaction design is a crucial component of successful digital products that is often overlooked in computer programming curricula. Through readings and in-depth analysis of a selection of published digital media artifacts (including online applications, software programs, and video games), students considered what constitutes a successful digital interaction between users, and how a sound understanding of digital and visual rhetoric will make them better product software/platform/media producers. The course also involved a service-learning component, wherein the Georgia Tech library commissioned students to develop concepts for new components for the library website and mobile application.
- IP Courses: The Politics of Mapping (2018-19).
In my teaching, I endeavor to present canonical and popular texts in a light that reinforces their relevance to students’ perspectives on the world around them. Ultimately, I try to convey the passion I feel for literature to students. I encourage them to take on the challenges inherent in the language of the texts, thereby achieving comprehension of the universality of theme and character as well as cultural differences. I hope to bring students to the conclusion that having a deeper understanding and knowledge of literary texts of previous centuries will put contemporary issues in their own societies into a more global perspective.
Syllabi available upon request.