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The Weekly Blast: February 6, 2009

EXERCISE OF THE WEEK:
Many of us find that our students sometimes slip into using clichés or general statements to make important points. Adam Cogbill brings us an exercise that shows students how specific details work in a comedy routine. Check it out here.

LOOKING FOR A FEW GOOD JUDGES:
We are looking for 2-3 volunteers to judge the Best Text Contest. The time commitment would consist of reading the essays submitted to the contest and 1-2 meetings to select the winners. It’s a fun process and a great way to see the writing being done throughout the program. If interested please contact Peggy (pmwoods@acad.umass.edu) or Heidi (hterault@acad.umass.edu) by February 13, 2009

SPECIAL PROJECT MONEY:
The Writing Program has available a small amount of money for instructors to do a project that will enhance the 112 curriculum. Instructors can request up to $200 for a special project. For more information and for the proposal form see the Writing Program website. Deadline for Special Project Requests is April 10, 2009.

PLANS FOR NEXT YEAR:
Reminder: Deadline to return the Teaching Request form is Friday, Feb. 13. Please return the form to the envelope located on the bulletin board in the Writing Program office. Thank you.

W-2 FORMS:
W-2 forms have been sent back to Human Resources, 325 Whitmore. You should call their office first before picking them up.

OFFICE HOUR FORMS:
Reminder: Office hour/address forms were due last week. If you haven’t turned yours in yet, please see Becky.

SYLLABUS DUE FRIDAY 2/6:
Please drop-off a copy of your syllabus and grading policy to Becky if you haven’t already. The deadline is today, Feb 6. A paper copy is needed for each semester.

TRAVEL MONEY FOR CONFERENCE PRESENTERS
Once again we are offering limited funding for those of you presenting papers at CCC in March or at other conferences related to the teaching of writing. Deadline to apply for funding is Friday, February 13. Please submit a request for travel funds to Heidi. The request should be accompanied by some proof that you are, indeed, presenting (not just attending [sorry]).


LIBRARY TRAINING IN ENGLWRIT 112
All College Writing instructors need to introduce their students to the research resources, print and electronic, available through UMass Libraries. This is a key part of Unit III: Adding to a Conversation. We recommend that you do this soon after students return from spring recess. For MWF sections, we’re suggesting sometime around Friday, March 27; for MW sections, Wednesday, March 25; for TuTh sections, Thursday, March 26. You can reserve a computer lab in Du Bois Library by going to the librarians’ blog for College Writing: http://blogs.umass.edu/ugradlib/college-writing/ and clicking on “Reserving a Library Instruction Classroom.” Do this as soon as possible so you’ll be sure to get a computer lab when you want it.

DIVERSITY ON TAP!
Diversity on Tap!
All TO’s Welcome!
Every Thursday at 7:30
Thursday, February 12, Diversity on Tap will meet at The Moan and Dove in Amherst.
Join members of the Diversity Committee to discuss issues related to writing and the classroom every Thursday evening! Bring questions, concerns, and classroom situations and enjoy a lively discussion!

COPY MACHINE:
Each instructor is aloud to print 600 single sided copies per class. Experimental courses are allotted 200 copies. Our copy machine is to be used for Writing Program work only! Each week a list of the total amount of copies each person has made will be taped to the wall behind the machine. Once you’ve reached 600 copies your number will be removed from the machine.

WRITING CENTER OPEN FOR BUSINESS:
The Writing Center is open for business! Please feel free to encourage your students to come to the writing center to get additional feedback on any of their writing projects. We are happy to work with them at any stage of their writing process. If you'd like, we can even arrange for a tutor to visit your class to talk about what we do at the writing center. You can also mention to your students that they can make appointments with tutors online at www.umass.edu/writingcenter.

While we are always eager to work with your students, we would ask that you do not require students to go to the writing center, as we do not wish to be seen
as performing a punitive function. Likewise, we ask that you do not offer extra credit for visiting the writing center, as we cannot guarantee that each student
would have access to a tutor due to increased demand for tutoring services.

If you have any additional questions, feel free to email us at writingcenter@acad.umass.edu or to stop by the writing center and speak with Haivan Hoang or Chris DiBiase.

Thanks,

Chris

NEW HOME FOR TECH COORDINATOR AND TECH FELLOWS:
The Technology Coordinator and the Tech Fellows have a new home! Stop by Bartlett 303C (across from Resource Center) to chat with us about teaching with technology, and stick around to see the new office we've set up. Leslie, Denise, Megan, Tim, Sarah, Christian, and Chris will be in the office and eager to chat about your technology-related ideas and questions. Our office hours will be posted on the door soon. It's a great space with new computers and software, and we want to invite all the Writing Program TOs to stop by and say hello.
__________________________________________
Leslie J. Bradshaw
Technology Coordinator
Writing Program
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Office: Bartlett 103
lbradsha@english.umass.edu

JUBILAT:
With the support of the UMass Arts Council and the Alumni Association, jubilat is once again able to offer FREE copies of our latest issue, jubilat 15, to faculty and graduate students for dissemination in your classes. If you are teaching creative writing or another class in which the contemporary poetry, art, and critical and creative prose in our pages might be useful, consider using the magazine as a teaching tool. If not, no worries—please give your students each a copy anyway! We are looking to build awareness of the magazine among undergrads, and the students in your classes are among the most likely to be interested in it. Please feel free to request a desk copy for yourself as well. We have /four hundred/ copies to give away! If you would like copies for your class, email us at
jubilat@english.umass.edu <mailto:jubilat@english.umass.edu> with the number of copies, and we'll set up a convenient time for you to pick them up from the jubilat office, 482 Bartlett.

Best,

The jubilat staff

 
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