Midterm Discussion 2007

questions for seeding midterm discussion

Part of this course is to push writing boundaries, and to test preconceptions about writing, about reading, about 'how' we think about writing in both electronic spaces and traditional spaces.

Our discussion over the next few days is not an exam or a debate, but a heuristic dialoge: an opportunity to think about and reflect on what you've been doing over the past few weeks. The questions on this page are some guides that I may call on to direct our attention.

See also MidtermReflection | MidtermDiscussionNotes26Mar2007

getting started

Think back to how you looked at these matters at the beginning of this course.
Since the time when you wrote those entries, - an example of the change
- What's stayed the same - and why?
- Most of my understanding has stayed the same because I came into the course with prior knowledge of and experience with both blogs and wikis.
- an example of what's stayed the same

How are you spending your time on your projects?
- time spent/week
- 1-2 hours
- how often
- around once a week
- how long
- doing what
- looking at other blogs, thinking about what I want to write, writing


What's going well? What's going better than expected?
There really hasn't been anything going well with my project, lately. I guess I've been coming up with a lot of topics to write about.

What's going not so well? What unexpected problems have you encountered?
I haven't been getting my ideas from my head onto my blog. It's been hard for me to designate time to sit at the computer and write on my blog.
- examples of problem
- How have you addressed these unexpected problems?
I've started to write things down on paper so that I don't forget about them. However, I've been forgetting to write them on the blog itself.

What are you going to do next?
I'm going to be taking my project much more seriously and will be attempting to designate times for writing on the blog.
- If you will change your plans, how?

collaborative writing and participation

If you're working with others, how is it going? That is
- what are others providing
- what are they not providing
- what complications are you running in to that involve the participation of others?
- how might you address those complications?
- what benefits are you gleaning from working with others?
- what drawbacks?

writing spaces

Has keeping a blog/writing in a wiki changed your writing habits, and if so how?
When I write on my blog, I think my writing becomes much more conversational than when I'm writing a paper for a class.
- writing habits include when you write, where you write, how you write (drafts, revisions, editing), who you write to (audience imagined and audience addressed), how you read your own writing. Do you write and run? return to it to develop later?
- if so, have any of these changes moved into your writing in other writing spaces?
I don't think my writing styles or habits in academic or other writing have changed because of the way I write on my blog.

Has keeping a blog/writing in a wiki twigged you into developing any new writing practices?
I don't think so.
- if so, examples

Has keeping a blog/writing in a wiki twigged you into developing any new writing strategies? that is, have you found yourself encountering new ways of addressing the new writing situations, eg: how you respond to others on a collaborative blog, or how to write a critique of a piece of writing posted to a wiki?
I don't think so.
- if so, examples

Has keeping a blog/writing in a wiki twigged you into experimenting with any new forms or genres of writing - either traditionally recognized (the sonnet; the aphorism....) or (purportedly) new (the list, the linked essay...)
- if so, examples
I've noticed that I have been making a lot more lists lately.

Has keeping a blog/writing in a wiki changed your understanding of writing, or your understanding of your self as a language user?
- if so, examples


realm of usefulness

As you see it now, how might you use a blog or wiki to support what kind of writing?
- research / academic writing and publishing
Even though everything that I publish online is copyrighted, I still am apprehensive about putting anything that I would possibly want published academically out there for everyone to see.
- research notetaking and analysis
I've used a blog in the past to decide on topics for a research paper. I could see myself doing that again in the future.
- personal notebooks
This is usually what I think of first when I think of blogs. I've got another blog that I use for that purpose.
- general online presence: news, reporting, commentary
I guess what I'm doing now on my blog could be considered commentary.
- online collaborative projects (wikipedia, etc)
I could see myself doing collaborative projects related to school, but otherwise I don't think that'll be something that I take part in.
- literary genres (essay, poetry, fiction)
I probably wouldn't be using a blog or wiki for this kind of writing, unless I'm looking for suggestions on how to improve something.
- support
I guess if I become an expert in some area that a lot of people need help in, I may keep a blog about it to help others.
- publishing
If I wanted something published and publishing companies wouldn't accept my work, maybe I would publish it on the internet to get it exposed.
- teaching
As a prospective teacher I can definitely see myself using a blog or wiki in the classroom. Both have characteristics that could work well for keeping students and parents updated, as well as the opportunity for students to work together outside of class.

generative questions

You're now approaching a level of expertise that allow you to address these questions with some authority. So

- In exactly two sentences, define a blog, distinguishing it from other forms of writing spaces, including a wiki and paper.
- In exactly two sentences, define a wiki, distinguishing it from other forms of writing spaces, including a blog and paper. see WhatIsAWiki
- What do you think you as a language user can do best in a wiki / blog that you can't do in another writing space?
- Just what does the blog / wiki provide that good ol' paper and pencil can't?
- Just what does pencil and paper provide that writing in a blog / wiki can't?
- Just what changes about writing when you write in a blog / wiki?

and so

- What are you finding you're gaining by keeping a blog / writing in a wiki that you didn't expect?
- What are you finding you lose?

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