Browse Student Learning by Series/Report

    Prof. Kristin McCann [1]
    Professor Catherine Viera [4]
    Professor Junaid Rana [2]
    Professor Thomas Herakovich [1]
    Rhet 102: Race and the University, Instr. Eve Eure: This course engages issues of race, diversity and representation at the University of Illinois. Students are encouraged to think about what the university is, as well as about race and ethnicity as a phenomena within the university’s narratives. The readings in the course interrogate U.S. race politics as a way to contextualize our understanding of the relationship between race and the University of Illinois. Students write both long and short essays which critically analyze the readings done both inside and outside of the classroom. This is achieved by a series of writing assignments, which prepare students to look at these various aspects of campus culture which might not otherwise be questioned and/or studied in a critical manner. Students build upon these initial studies to create a larger research project that brings them into conversation with their environment and other scholars, as well as research of previous students. The course syllabus is available at: [2]
    Rhet 104, Ethnography of Race and the University, Instr. Samantha Looker: In this course, students take the writing skills that they built during Rhet 103 and apply them to research, with the ultimate goal of completing an in-depth research project. As part of the EUI-Rhetoric Race and the University Project, this class revolves around how race is represented and lived on university campuses, and specifically on our own campus here at UIUC. Students ground themselves in readings on how race is defined and talked about, and then move on to research related issues on our campus. Students will choose a research question related to race to answer in your final research project. As part of the EUI (Ethnography of the University Initiative), this class gives students the opportunity to create original scholarly research based on your firsthand experience with people, texts, and places on campus. In addition to traditional academic sources, students final research project will include several interviews, observations, surveys, and/or analyses of University texts. [1]
    RHET 105, Spring 2012 [1]
    RHET105 Fall 2011: Principles of Composition [2]
    RHET105 Principles of Composition [1]
    RHET105 Section B4C3 (Race and Ethnicity at UIUC) [1]
    Rhetoric 105, Principles of Composition, Race & the University, Instr. Kristin McCann: This course entailed continual negotiation of three primary focuses: academic writing, introduction to ethnographic research methodologies, and critical inquiry into issues of race and representation. I approached this course as a semester-long conversation with students, the texts with which we engaged, and the kairos of the physical and ideological spaces in which we were immersed. I encouraged students to draw upon their expertise as current UIUC undergraduates and to consider their stake in the university’s narratives. Students were, of course, not expected to produce a complete ‘ethnography’; rather, to consider what combination of ethnographic research methodologies might be most useful to their specific essays and research projects and what issues they deemed most exigent for their inquiries. Students also had the opportunity to present at the bi-annual EUI conference, alongside other EUI undergraduate and graduate students. The course syllabus is available at: [1]
    Rhetoric 105/Principles of Composition introduces students to the practices of research-based writing for academic audiences, such as formulating a researchable question, locating sources, constructing an argument, drafting, revising, and editing. This course uses writing, reading, observing, and critical thinking to develop scholarly curiosity. To do this, instructors focus on: deepening research skills, developing students’ abilities to read and respond to difficult texts, and, most importantly, helping students through the writing process in a social, collaborative, revision-focused environment. This particular section of Rhetoric 105 was focused around the theme of “Exploring Student Communities at the University of Illinois.” The assignments and discussions asked students to explore their own experiences as students and consider how various student communities shape our campus culture and identities as students. Over the course of the semester students formulated research questions about a particular campus community and answered them by doing semester-long ethnographic research (observations, interviews, archive analysis, and surveys), including a short video presentation. The kinds of writing studies and conducted were formulated around reflections on these communities. [1]
    Rhetoric 233 (Principles of Composition) is an intermediate expository writing course where students refine their skills in critical reading, argumentation, revision, anticipating audience, and editing. In this course, students explored the relationships between language, culture and identity, as well as examined the ways that writers understand their surrounding cultures, contexts, and audiences (and what that means for their writing). They explored how writers use language to not only express themselves or their ideas, but also to do something—act politically, resist dominant structures, express agency, enact change, etc. As part of the Ethnography of the University Initiative (EUI), a major part of this course was to produce an in-depth research project, where students chose some aspect of language, culture, and community/identity to study on the University. They engaged in ethnographic research methods, which included collecting data, observing and participating in their chosen culture, recording their findings, and analyzing what they collected and recorded. [1]
    Soo Ah Kwon, Instructor [1]
    Students were encouraged to make their work public so that their research subjects, fellow students and Syracuse community participants, would be able to comment and provide feedback on their research. The IDEALS on-line archive would enable this process to be recorded for future students in the hope that they will build on present student research. The archiving of “scholarship in action” research for ANT 300 may help Syracuse University better understands the learning outcomes of “scholarship in action” initiatives. [2]
    The course also introduced students to ethnographic methods. The bulk of this class was devoted to students’ own ethnographic projects on a Syracuse University “Scholarship in Action” endeavor although it was possible to carry out research on other areas if students presented a good case for doing so. A wide variety of social practices and learning processes were expected to become part of what students researched. [2]
    The Ethnography of the University Initiative (EUI) includes several universities and community colleges located in the state of Illinois. All of these schools are public. Syracuse University is the first non-Illinois and first private university to join the group. This class joined an inter-campus learning community in which many classes from several schools (most, however, are located at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) explore their universities and colleges ethnographically. In order to explore Syracuse University ethnographically, we needed to think about what “the university” is, what “ethnography” is, and what “scholarship in action” is. Broadly, we explored the university as a composite of prose, numerical, and visual narratives. [1]
    The Ethnography of the University: Studying Scholarship in Action was designed to introduce undergraduate students to ethnographic methodologies, institutional analysis, and the research publication process. Students conducted ethnographic studies of Syracuse University Scholarship in Action projects of their choosing and had the opportunity to produce their results on the web. All the steps in the research process, from the formation of research questions to the creation of final research papers, was produced on-line at a collaborative website, Moodle, that has been created at the University of Illinois to facilitate undergraduate ethnography of the university projects. This project is titled the Ethnography of the University Initiative (EUI). [2]
    The objective of this course is to provide students with hands-on training in ethnographic methods and writing and to help students become critical readers of ethnographic research. Instead of attempting to present a whole smorgasbord of research methods or to survey the vast literature on ethnographic fieldwork, we focus on a small selection of techniques that are central to much anthropological fieldwork (field note taking, participant observation, interviewing, mapping) and that are most useful and relevant for students' semester projects. Other techniques and issues are discussed and incorporated as they emerge from students' own research inquiries. Students will not conduct a full-blown research project but instead will get “a taste” of ethnographic research through a series of ethnographic exercises and students' own mini-project. At the end of the semester, students write an ethnographic research report based on their findings and reflections on the research process. This course is affiliated with the EUI and, as a part of this initiative, students are asked to try their hand at ethnographic research about their own institution, Illinois State University. [4]
    The purpose of this class was to provide students with opportunities to engage in a scholarly examination of research and practices associated with museum interpretation to diverse audiences; and to lead in the development and implementation of Krannert Art Museum educational programs and outreach activities with selected local audiences. [1]