Perusall, the Reading Process, and Engaged Difficulty
Perusall, the Reading Process, and Engaged Difficulty avatar

         I was inspired by the video of Lisa Lane’s demonstration of Hypothesis and Perusall and immediately began to think of ways I could use Hypothesis and Perusall in my Integrated Reading and Writing ENG 100 class. Last night we were in the library working with our librarian to understand how to evaluate online sources. As I watched Lisa’s video, I thought that part of that library session next time might include students using Hypothesis to run the CRAP test on a website and annotate their work then share their evaluation work with the class. We did some practice last night, yet I can see how Hypothesis would make it so much more engaging. The other idea is to use Perusall instead of or as part of the Funds of Knowledge (FoK) dialectical reading journal assignment. The way it works now, students complete a FoK dialectical reading journal as part of an at-home reading activity. This particular journal is asking students to record or monitor how what they are bringing to the text (both their general and literary repertoires) are shaping their meaning-making process. Usually students share what they wrote in their reading journals in groups of four using the active learning stations—yet what if instead of sharing their journals—they used Perusall to annotate some of what they captured in their journals, say three to five places (annotations) per student in different colors. In the end, each group would have a map that would graphically represent the core principle in the class of reading as a social interaction in which the student is responsible for speaking back to the text, saying something of their own, constructing their own meaning and leaning to see reading as “a struggle within and against the languages of academic life” (Bartholomae and Petrosky, “Facts, Artifacts, and Counterfacts”).

       The other idea I drew from both Lisa’s demonstration and from “Beyond Highlighting: How to Get the Most From Your Annotations” is to use Perusall as a way to work with the “Difficulty Essay” assignments.   In the “difficulty essay” IRW teachers ask students to approach moments in the text that are striking in their complexity and begin to work through them in order to get a better idea of their purposes and work. The Difficulty Essay divides the reading process into four steps: initial observations, question (s), + Plan of action, new insights, and reflection. This sequence makes thinking visible and allows students to approach the reading process more strategically. Assignments like allow students to learn what types of things are difficult for them to understand and to begin to develop a methodology for figuring them out, as well as to practice supporting the conclusions they come to at the end of the process with evidence from the text. On the day students complete their difficulty essay, we could use Perusall to annotate and share the specific part of the text they zeroed in on for their difficulty essay, their plan of action, and what new insights they gained from the process. Since each student developed a strategy, a plan of action, to overcome their difficulty, we could use Perusall to assemble a map of the meaning construction strategies each person in a group used. Super cool right? I found the video and the annotated bibliography really helpful in thinking about how technology is changing the way we read and how to use it to teach integrated reading and writing and look forward to our Zoom session.

Accessing Accessibility Online
Kellen

As Scott Warnock covered the variety of texts we could incorporate into our OWC, I was most struck by his reminder to “think about the accessibility of the texts you choose” (59). While Warnock largely discusses strategies for making texts available to students, I wondered how we could use online programs to make content accessible to students. In this blog, I want to think about accessibility from an intersectional perspective that tries to take into account social issues like class, sexuality, and learning ability.

ACCESSIBILITY STRATEGY #1: ZERO-COST TEXTBOOKS

In all of Warnock’s discussions of online reading options, I was a bit surprised to see no mention of the ways in which we can minimize how much our course costs students. The prevalence of online writing, library databases, and open-access resources allows us to reduce the cost of our courses for students. To be sure, I understand the attachment to hardcopies of books. Physical books involve different kinds of thinking and reading, but digital texts do as well. Both are valuable. Transitioning our reading materials to more digital formats allows us to engage with primary sources on an unprecedented scale. For example, in my composition class, students can use InternetArchive to explore the New England Primer (1690). Students can interact with a copy of seventeenth-century text, noticing the similarities and differences in styles from now and then.

I’ve also envisioned entire courses where I ask students to locate all the readings on their own. I have mostly seen this as a literary survey course (pre-1900) where all the materials are in the public domain. Rather than having students buy an anthology, I will have them make their own by using Google Books, InternetArchive, and other online databases to find particular versions of a work such as Moby-Dick or Frankenstein. Not only does this eliminate the need to purchase a $50 book, but it teaches students to use research techniques that they can apply to this and other classes.

ACCESSIBILITY STRATEGY #2: STUDENT-SELECTED READINGS

Building on the last point, I also envision a composition course where students do the bulk work of finding reading materials that are relevant to them. For example, MiraCosta’s library has access to a really wonderful LGBT Archive. I’ve mused about a “Queer Composition” course where I would organize the semester into various themes (like I do already). At the beginning of the semester, I would teach students how to access and use this database while also providing them different kinds of readings. Over the course of the semester, I would increasingly ask students to choose weeks where they will do research and find relevant articles that the entire class will read. These can be fictional, nonfictional, published, audio, visuals, etc. In the end, I would compile everything together into an Online Education Resource that I would share with students and make available to future students. As the course continues, we will develop our own working archive of queer composition.

As Warnock indicates, we have access to a variety of materials on the web, and, as educators, we need to make information literacy accessible to our students in ways that are culturally relevant and empowering. Through this assignment, I hope to introduce students to strategies for locating and verifying information published in digital formats. In addition to reducing costs, it aims to familiarize students more with research and reading strategies that they will need as more information migrates to virtual ecosystems.

ACCESSIBILITY STRATEGY #3: ALT-READING PROGRAMS

Finally, as we think about accessibility, we can’t lose sight of whether the content we select is actually comprehensible and user-friendly. Programs like Perusall, Hypothesis, and Voyant open up access to a text in ways that traditional reading don’t. The first two highlight collaborative reading practices that demonstrate students are reading and engaging with course materials, and the latter breaks down complicated texts into a numerical information and graphs. In the past (but I’m doing more again this semester), I would have students use Voyant to identify keywords in a novel (like Huck Finn), poems (Angel Island ones), or essays (I just did this one with students last week). Using this information, I have students attempt to infer what the reading may be about. I also ask them to find keywords that interest them and identify where they are concentrated in the text. This gives them a rough blueprint of what they may expect, and, of course, when they get something different, we can use that as a discussion opportunity. Rather than signaling the death of the book or reading, I think these programs can breath new life into it.

In the end, I feel like the proliferation of databases and online reading platforms has given us a stronger arsenal than ever before to teach writing, reading, and literature. The book isn’t dead. Reading isn’t dead. They are evolving and adapting and so must we.

 

Books and Handouts and Message Boards Oh My
Books and Handouts and Message Boards Oh My avatar

So much to write about! I’ll be as succinct as possible.

I appreciate the opening discussion in Warnock about textbook choice. For the record, I am an instructor who advocates for classic literature in the composition class. I was pleased in Chapter 8 to see literature written by noteworthy authors included in sample readings: E.B. White, MLK, George Orwell. If I am required to teach texts other than fiction/novels, I will choose authors that are among the ones that students should have ‘tasted’ in their college experience All of my colleagues use brilliant texts regardless of genre; I am pleased that we have some autonomy to choose the ones that correlate with our pedagogy. Warnock brings up several salient points about assigned texts, a few of which prompt me to pull together my handouts, articles, and short stories and figure out how best to make them available. My first inclination is to post each in Pages and enumerate them. I like the idea of bundling the particular assigned reading with any correlative articles and handouts in one module. I have not yet mastered the art of creating modules, so I plan to work on that.

I like the chapter point “How Do I know They Are Reading?”

I will include multiple choice quizzes and discussion board assignments. I will consider requiring students to keep a Reading Journal and will explore options for crediting and possibly sharing it.

Chapter Eight in Warnock had so many good points. Here are a few I noted:

Regarding student posting:

  • Discussion Boards (DB) get students to “write, write, write” (70). This fact aligns with my (and probably everyone else’s) position that practice makes perfect(ish).
  • The cycle: this type of writing leads to more thinking and more thinking leads to more writing.
  • Shy students get a voice.
  • What do you all think about anonymous posts?
  • Students aren’t just writing to “please the instructor” (70).
  • This type of writing leads to “tantalizing digressions” (71) though, as discussed later in the chapter, the instructor/moderator may need to step in and manage.
  • ***I really like this point: DB teach students to be succinct and rhetorically precise. I preach about avoiding the ninth circle of writers’ hell: repetition, redundancy, and wordiness.***
  • Students develop interesting relationships through replying.

Regarding instructor involvement:

  • Great point: the instructor should not be on “center stage” (120).
  • S/he (they) should choose response and to whom to respond carefully
  • Instructor’s response should be challenging, not “cheerleading.”
  • Grading these responses can be challenging. It would be problematic to rely solely on length- I would anticipate some consequentially superfluous writing. Warnock acknowledges that reading, responding to, and evaluating DBs can be labor intensive. My initial and continuing concern with lots of DB activity is precisely the workload, so I would plan these assignments carefully, adding them to the agenda with my own time constraints factored.

Me: What do you like to read? Students: Tweets
Me: What do you like to read? Students: Tweets avatar

Sorry for such a long post. 

Equity and Accessibility (Warnock Ch 7): 

Warnock touches upon some important points or reminders here, including making texts available much earlier before the semester starts, especially when not using a traditional textbook. Even if/when I use a textbook, I give them a heads up so that they can get it through amazon or other cheaper sources and links where they can get other/cheaper editions, or give them options to get the e-book version, make copies, print out the pdf, etc.. Giving them different formats and time benefits distance learners, especially, but also our students who are waiting for financial aid.  I think this also relates to giving them the syllabus and a welcome/hello letter in different formats before the semester starts as well.  

Multimodal texts: I like the idea of this and definitely incorporate this to supplement textual analysis, but I think it’s important to be mindful of WHEN to use these and to also make sure they are accessible in terms of browser support or captioning.  I don’t like to use these up front in case of giving too much away that would lesson their “cold” analysis and original thoughts and inquiries, but maybe after their own analysis, to validate their thoughts, or get them thinking about the text in different ways as more supplement rather than scaffold. 

Library Equity: I never really thought about this until some of the colleges I work at started having these equity minded library workshops.  I usually have them start getting their feet wet with our library databased early in the semester with low stake exercises.  This kind of reminds me of my first class as a grad student when my professor made us look up a word in the real Oxford English Dictionary.  I was shocked that a dictionary was a dozen volumes long when I was used to the one book dictionary and that this one had the complete origin and history of every word.  I was sort of in shock, enlightened, and overwhelmed just from this one exploration and assignment.  This is what a lot of our students feel like when exposed to our library databases.  Some of them do not even know how to access it from the school’s website, which as we all know is like two simple clicks of the mouse.  A lot of students do not know what is available to them, the huge advantage of having a wealth of vetted knowledge at their disposal, or how to navigate those resources, to use more focused words and the huge difference an extra word in the search parameter can make or using the AND/OR in the searching.  I think it’s incredibly valuable to teach this early in the semester, again, with low stakes assignments, or schedule a library orientation early on. Something that I did not think about is using the library to double check the copyrights and open resource status of the materials I use – this is something that I will definitely start doing.

 

Conversation and Writing (Warnock Ch 8 & other)

I almost annotated everything in this chapter. Some of the things that I didn’t really consider is how online students have an advantage in their discussions with writing/message boards vs. a f2f class.  I always assumed they had a disadvantage not having that f2f interaction and that message boards tend to be more dry and not as vibrant or rich as in class discussions, but Warnock certainly enlightened me on several advantages such as online students given more time to digest and express their opinions, messages as practices to refine their writing skills, developing coherence and support within their discussions, etc… 

Something that I continue grappling with is my role in the discussion board.  I usually just let the students be in charge of the forums with me just being an outside facilitator with minimal interjection. I do, however, have very explicit rules/rubric for them to follow to solicit the best discussions possible.  I usually only comment regarding following instructions or not, and maybe length of content, instead of accuracy of content.  Like Warnock suggests, I let them freely “roam.”  Like Warnock says, if I go too in depth in responding to every student’s primary and secondary posts, a teacher can drive themselves mad and preoccupy all their time.  Instead, I use announcements to address all of the students’ discussions for that particular assignment, since most of the discussions have a common thread and can be applied to most, if not all the students at once.  Again, this balance or my role(s) is something I’m still constantly experimenting and grappling with.  

One idea that I really liked from Warnock is the idea of using the message boards as part of other assignments. Right now, I use them as an extension of every individual homework assignment for the pedagogy of using your own brain first, then multiple brains (collaborative learning), and then the collective brain.  I never thought about using the message boards as part of a larger or meta assignment later on. 

Annotated bibliography: I am fascinated with the tools of Perusal and Hypothesis and the whole realm of annotation technologies.  I thought the annotations of The Talmud in that video discussion were fascinating in that the commentary and meta commentary went outwards surrounding the text in a 2-D way.  This instantly made me think of how helpful it would be in annotating my favorite book  House of Leaves in this way. Collaborative annotating is something I will definitely start incorporating in my class and I think is a great way to pair with how I use Google Docs as a collaborative prewriting and outlining tool already.  Besides that, I’m going to the gym right now to start listening to those Podcasts in Teaching in Higher Education

 

Conversations about Conversations: Approaches to a Post-Text World
Conversations about Conversations: Approaches to a Post-Text World avatar

I found the readings (from the Warnock chapters to some of the bibliography texts I read, like a few articles on “Welcome to the Post Text World”) and videos fascinating this week because they broached what might be the most fundamental issue I have in most f2f classes (and suggested to me how that issue may echo in an online teaching setting): how do we get students to interact meaningfully and critically with the concept of text in a world predicated on mediating predominantly unmeaningful and uncritical interactions? (And, by extension, can we even define meaningful/unmeaningful and critical/uncritical as useful binary oppositions anymore?).

While Warnock was a little humdrum, as usual, in the chapters, I did really appreciate two aspects of these chapters:

1) That Chapter 8, especially, gave very practical advice through examples of how Warnock structures his discussion boards. I have had relative success with discussion boards in my f2f classes this semester, mostly because I unwittingly followed some of his advice, like having very specific word count criteria, and so seeing an even more structured way of approaching both formal and informal discussion board posts is really helpful.

2) That Warnock, though still attached to traditional ideas of text in some ways, did have a variety of useful sound bites here related to how online teaching can redistribute text: “think about the accessibility of the texts you choose” (59); “more equitable participation” (70); that writing online broadens definitions of audience (70); etc.

I especially liked the focus on “exploratory writing”: “[Discussion boards] allow them to practice, make mistakes, and thus develop. The message board environment represents an elegant combination of theory and practice, as it creates an ideal place to allow such exploratory or discovery writing to happen” (85). This is what process-based writing is meant to do, but (I find) more often than not doesn’t do, because students try to be perfect as fast as possible so minimal editing, they think, is required. The connection of this exploration, too, to class community is something I want to quickly adapt, via Warnock’s strategy of having students quote their class colleagues in their papers (88): this seems like a good, quick way to teach the redistribution of authority in online spaces.

Both this strategy of students quoting other students and having them engage with each other in discussion boards frequently connects to the main problem I am having in my ENGL100 this semester: “Students rarely talk to each other” (Warnock 76). We seem to be in both a post-text world and a post-conversation world. I’m on the fence about whether both of those are necessarily bad things, but they are definitely important to take into account and seem to be often deflating f2f classes. (Another problem I think that arises within such a situation is how we even market f2f classes, that are often so content-based, when content seems to need less emphasis, since if students really wanted to know something, they could find it. They are aware of this, so me pointing out information in class can generally just meet the wall of “If I wanted to know, I would have looked it up).

My guiding philosophy, then, has for a long time been connected to rethinking literacy in a post-text world. A lot is said about how much students use social media and other Internet-based applications, but I increasingly find that their literacy about interacting with culture in a multimodal world is relatively low, related perhaps to the suggestion in “Welcome to the Post Text World” that

“there’s the more basic question of how pictures and sounds alter how we think. An information system dominated by pictures and sounds prizes emotion over rationality. It’s a world where slogans and memes have more sticking power than arguments. (Remind you of anyone?) And will someone please think of the children: Do you know how much power YouTube has over your kids? Are you afraid to find out?”

As a concluding thought here, I wonder if our focus should be less on a post-text world (because of how much that still centralizes “text” as an ideal against which we are not working) and instead think about a discourse or even post-discourse world, where concepts of power and authority are more important to integrate than what exactly is said or how it is said (how do we even approach rhetoric in a world where the term seems to not really mean anything to anybody anymore? Not just “millennials” [who, I hope everyone knows, aren’t actually the majority of our students anymore], but every age bracket).

In a way, Warnock is pointing us in that direction, by centralizing conversation and “student texts” rather than the types of texts we are used to in composition classrooms—but how can we go further? How do we turn those conversations into interrogations of conversations, into conversations about conversations rather than into conversations about comprehending material that is ephemeral and decentralized now anyways?

Reading in the Digital Age
Reading in the Digital Age avatar

In Chapter 7, Warnock’s Guideline 19 talks about the “millions of Web readings and multimedia materials on the Web.” I think that everyone has discovered this and uses this approach to be able to include rich, up-to-date materials in our f2f or online courses. I know I spend hours every year updating my readings to include current, hot topics for discussion and as fodder for student writing. My opinion is that texts devoted to readings are out-of-date before they are printed and cause unnecessary expense for students.

I found the more important issues contained in this week’s videos and readings were getting students to learn to read deeply with the goal of being able to critically talk about the ideas, discern the important issues, and then to springboard to their own thinking and then ultimately to their own writing. This is truly a life-skill or survival skill for any serious student and actually for any mature adult.

This week’s readings further moved us from simply having students read online articles or online texts to looking at teaching reading strategies specific to digital environments. I have to say I wish more research was devoted to this practical aspect and focused on college courses both f2f and online because reading has changed. Although the research delves into showing the differences, I see the need for research that actually deals with the change and how to teach it.

As I pondered what to post this week, I kept coming up with questions rather than any answers, so I’ll include some here.

How do we teach students to read deeply on a device that has been seen as a great skimming device?

Will students really learn to read deeply on a device that includes links in every article to so many other locations or to so much other information?

Will deep reading take place on the same device that connects to social media or provides so much entertainment?

Opening up New Reading/ Writing Experiences Online
Opening up New Reading/ Writing Experiences Online avatar

In Chapter 7 of Warnock, he focuses on many different possibilities for incorporating reading into the online class. And while I do value his reassurance that it is still okay to use a book in an online course, the two sections that really got me excited about reading online were his sections on Multimodal Texts and Student Texts. As Warnock points out: “The array of audio and video materials on the Web can be used in conjunction with conventional texts to create a different kind of ‘reading’ experience for students” (62). What I like about his approach is it seems additive rather than a substitution, that is, he still values “traditional” texts while also opening up the possibilities of texts that we can point our students to in an online space.

This connects nicely to an interview with Laura Gibbs on the “How to Create Engaging Online Classes” episode of the Teaching in Higher Ed podcast. For Gibbs, the most important feature of an online course is its openness, and she urges us to design our online courses to be open-ended spaces. She suggests that the nature of the Internet is one of openness, and as teachers we should ask ourselves- is my course open or closed? One method she shares is to have students create their own blogs that belong to them, the students create blogs and then engage with each other’s blog posts, and she emphasizes the importance of building choices into the weekly workflow. Gibbs uses student blogs in place of discussion boards in hopes of motivating students to engage with ideas and share with each other while developing a place (the blog) that belongs to them- and everything they do takes place at the blog- her ideas are very compelling and links Warnock’s focus on multimodal approaches and his suggestion to make student writing a central text in the online space. 

I’ve also been super inspired by John Warner’s book The Writer’s Practice. Warner calls for us to create writing experiences that give students increased agency in the composition classroom while providing opportunities for the kind of multimodal readings that Warnock highlights. Next semester I plan to borrow Warner’s “What’s So Funny?” (Rhetorical Analysis of a Work of Humor) writing experience/ assignment in my ENGL 100 course. In the experience students first identify their audience as “a curious bunch of people who enjoy being shown aspects of [our] culture they may not have immediately grasped. Your goal is to have the audience exclaim, ‘I never would have thought of that,’ after reading your analysis”(91). The cool connection to both Warnock and Gibbs is Warner’s suggestion that students choose their own texts to analyze, they can choose a bit from a stand-up comedy routine, a sketch from SNL, Key and Peele, or other sketch show, they can analyze cartoons, comics, and even memes. This would increase both student agency and engagement while emphasizing the openness of the online space- I know that I consistently watch excerpts from Late Night with Seth Meyers on YouTube, and based on anecdotal observation, students engage with authentic texts in a similar way. Students then go on to process the text, they react to the text answering questions, “where did you laugh? what kind of laugh was it?”, students then observe, “look for details . . . who [else] would find it funny? what does the audience have to know to find it funny?” Next, students analyze, “start to shape some of the observations into a theory,” and then synthesize “[students] work from those observations and bits of analysis” (93). After this sustained engagement with the text, students move on to the drafting/ revision process. My goal in an online course would be for students to engage in blog posts/ discussion boards detailing their choice of texts, their process of analysis and synthesis while getting feedback – the student writing and engagement will be privileged while the students explore their choices and the analysis of their texts. 

Writing Process Overview
Writing Process Overview avatar

The way I structure my class is that I go through things pretty slowly and methodically for the first paper in order for my students to build their writing “toolbelt.”  After they have the foundational tools in place, then every unit after that speeds up and the process of assignments progresses.  So, for this video, I’m giving an overview of how I teach the writing process that leads up to our first essay.  Each Module and page is a step by step approach from building the foundational concepts to the reading assignment, to writing process, essay anatomy, and revising/editing/proofreading steps to achieve their final draft and reflection.  Each assignment has a corresponding discussion board and some assignments I use with Collaborations/shared Google Docs, mostly for thesis revisions and class brainstorming/prewrites.  Here is my youtube link: https://youtu.be/zrM_uPWGq8k

My homie, Socrates
My homie, Socrates avatar

  • I apologize for being so late with this unit.  As an adjunct at 4 different schools, all my different spring breaks messed me up a bit, including my daughter’s, in which she pretty much preoccupied all my time.  

Socratic Method – This is the philosophy I center my pedagogy around the most.  I love the socratic dialogue/dialectal and constructivism approaches to learning as opposed to the fill your brain up and regurgitate or lecture based methods.  However, translating a socratic method to online courses is a tricky one.  What I really like about Tony Burman’s video is that diagram of using cms/online tools to facilitate collaborative learning.  I like the idea of individual exploration wikis/blogs, mini lectures of patterns in responses, collaboration through discussion boards and google docs, and how that diagram can be shifted around and work cyclically and not linearly.  In my class, I use individual assignments and then into discussion boards and sometimes google docs in bigger collaborative assignments, but I have yet to use wikis, blogs, or listservs as Warnock suggests. 

*** In my critical thinking class, I like to start with the socratic dialogue as a means of a critical thinking strategy.  I use the classic Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, A conversation between Waldo and Carmen San Diego on the concept of love, and a socratic dialogue on fait, which also play into a research paper on ontology and self-awareness.  They create their own socratic dialogues and also role play characters to generate different perspectives and “lenses” as a scaffolding exercise. 

Warnock Text: Some things I definitely want to incorporate and build in both my online and f2f courses is service learning and group projects with a service learning component. I’ve also always wanted to turn my entire course into a video game as I have already mentioned in other blog posts, but this is a lofty goal that may take a long time and resources I don’t have to accomplish. As far as syllabus design goes (Chapter 5), I’m actually pretty confident in my syllabus and reading this chapter gives me some validation and peace of mind that my syllabus addresses most of what Warnock recommends.  Some things that I definitely want to incorporate better is messaging rules. My organization, the way I name files and the rules I have my students name files is a bit messy still and can use better organization. One thing that I’m not present enough about is the section on technology, especially regarding how slow/fast they upload large files, or even accessibility to large files using old outdated technology.  I assume that students have the most updated technology or can use the school’s computers, so I don’t really take into account students who use old slow computers or do not have the current software like microsoft office or pdf readers.  Along this tangent of the time it takes like connection time/lag, I also want to incorporate time expectations for all my assignments to help them better manage their time.   

Prewriting, Synchronicity, and Presence
Prewriting, Synchronicity, and Presence avatar

I’m glad to have had the opportunity to work through this exercise and to think about ways to get students to exchange their work in our unit/discussion of the writing process. In my presentation post (is it typical to really hate one’s voice in a computer recording?), I focused on prewriting (where, I tell students, the real essaying–using writing as a tool for discovery–occurs). The brief presentation is not in connection with any one assignment (I hope that’s ok as it veers a bit from the instruction for this week); rather it is part of a longer discussion early in the semester about the writing process and applies to all assignments generally.

In my onsite classes, I often ask students to exchange work that they have written in class (brainstorming upcoming writing assignments, e.g.), and I will work at nailing down similar exercises in an online class. I’m not sure if I want students to work synchronistically on that sort of assignment, so I may use Collaboration. Having stated that (about synchronicity), Chat can also work, but I don’t want students to feel pressured into a time/punctuality constraint for a low-stakes activity.

Re: my synchronous exchanges with students, yes yes yes. I will use chat to conference short writing assignments. Syrnyk uses the phrase  “embodied presence through texts,” and though I’m not certain we need a face-to-face exchange with students to recognize this presence, it’s useful to contemplate if Syrnyk’s concept is a bit lofty. I frequently use the term “presence” in my written comments: “strong voice and presence here,” “a bit more commentary can strengthen voice and presence.” I have not felt a need to address “presence” in that same context in any other manner. I acknowledge that my use of the term may slightly differ from Syrnyk’s. I will work at acknowledging that “embodied presence” via chat or even some version of video chat (skype? Sounds kinda awful), but it seems that meeting at an arranged time on the student’s Google Doc may be perfectly suitable for the objective.

Here is my presentation:

https://screencast-o-matic.com/watch/cqfVFBZcPs