The university-level study of English is paradoxically both an individual and collaborative effort, with students developing their own analytical skills while simultaneously learning to think in collaborative ways with tutors and fellow students. What this paradox demonstrates, of course, is that communicating with those around you plays a significant role in the development of ideas, … Continue reading 7 Questions to Help Students Use and Understand Secondary Sources
It's not very often that my research requires me to get involved with something as interesting as archeology, but in tying up some last pieces for my new book The Vitality of Influence: Alan Hollinghurst and a History of Image (Palgrave Macmillan, early 2014) I have found myself tracking down archeological digs in some surprising … Continue reading Alan Hollinghurst and Some Archeological Digging
This week I reminded my students that if they are serious about getting a good job in writing or communications then they need to get serious about their media consumption. That means: a daily newspaper with an international focus, a weekly news magazine, and two to three high-quality monthly magazines. 'But that doesn't require you … Continue reading “How Do You Consume Your Media?” It’s Time to Get Serious
Over the past several years I have experimented with experiential learning in my teaching: how it's presented, how it's managed, and how it's evaluated. This semester I have rolled out a full-scale experiential learning component for my module on the Twentieth-Century British Novel--and this has only come after a great deal of trial and error. … Continue reading Making the Most Out of Experiential Learning: 5 Things That Work for Me
I have said before that my research is still largely paper-based and that I use my Kindle exclusively for pleasure reading. This isn't entirely true: I do use a combo of Mendeley and Evernote on my iPad for journal articles. However, the fact remains that my primary texts are just about always of the paper … Continue reading When Will Kindles Be Ready for the University Classroom?
I've finally made peace with my Cloud, and come to terms with the fact that while I will continue to read books for pleasure on my Kindle, most of my actual research will be distinctly paper-based for the immediate future. (I'm just waiting for the next great piece of kit to make that change.) But, … Continue reading A Discovery of Academics