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INTD 105 Instructors' Retreat: Consultant Follow-Up

This retreat is devoted to Michael Murphy's consultant's report on Geneseo's writing program. The meeting specifically focused on planning a follow-up assessment of INTD 105 and 106.

Remarks by Michael Murphy

INTD 105 is a good model for first-year writing at a small liberal arts college. It would be nice to reinvigorate it as part of Geneseo's college culture.

One big problem for INTD 105 is staffing it. We might consider a "writing fellows" program, that would bring experienced writers to campus as adjunct faculty who could teach some sections of INTD 105 and advise faculty teaching others. It might also help to have an official director for "affiliated writing programs," e.g., INTD 105 and 106, the Writing Learning Center, and majors' writing requirements.

For assessing writing, Michael recommends portfolio-based assessment of INTD  105 and 106, followed by some sort of assessment of writing in majors.

General Discussion

Part of assessing writing includes identifying what stakeholders consider to be good writing and important writing skills. Perhaps it's time for a faculty learning community or working group to form around what our upper-level writing requirement should be.

INTD 105 seems to play an important role in GLOBE's critical thinking area, particularly the "explicate and question assumptions" outcome. Also relative to diversity and pluralism, given INTD 105's reference to "Standard English" and the presence of non-native speakers in the course. Indeed, maybe INTD 105 could play a foundational role in a curriculum based on GLOBE.

It would be nice for new INTD 105 instructors to have a co-teaching mentoring period, somewhat like Humanities did. Generally, it would be nice to encourage collaborations between sections so that instructors can build on each other's strengths.

INTD 106 can serve as a place to detect struggling students.

Perhaps INTD 105 and 106 should have their own prefix to make them more prominent in people's minds. Maybe "GWAR" for "Geneseo Writing and Rhetoric"?

INTD 105 (and 106) add sophistication to students' writing, both with respect to what students say (the content of the writing) and how they say it (the mechanics). Maybe both of these should be explicit in the course description, outcomes, assessment, etc.

Maybe library research sessions could or should coordinate with INTD 106 material on research as well as with INTD 105 sections' uses of research.

Assessment Rubric

We broke into working groups to consider specific outcomes to assess and to design rubrics for assessing them. The eventual result is this document. The first section is the rubric proposed for actual use in spring 2020, and the second ("Working Area for Rubric") contains the initial ideas developed during this retreat.

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