In today's American college classrooms, more and more international students are enrolling at a rapid pace. This happened in my classroom sevearl years ago. I had taught for over twenty years at the time, but I did not know how to approach these students who possessed varying levels of English proficiency. My traditional methods did not work, and all I could do was speak louder-as if an increased volume would increase their learning.
Because I considered teaching a vocation, I did not want to give up. Instead, I enrolled in a doctoral program in Adult Education and chose Teaching English as a Second Language as my Cognate.
In one of my doctoral classes, I had to do a research project. I decided to conduct interviews with my new students and simply ask them how they prefrred to learn how to speak and write in english. The results fascinated me!
Based on what they told me and what I found in the literature, I totally revamped my composition classes. Gone were the days of lecture! Instead, with student input, I created a film based approach to teaching writing that seemed to emancipate my students, and they became proficient writers of English! Along the way, I was emancipated, too, and I knew that my classes would never be the same.
This book is a result of my experience,and I hope it can be used as a jumping off point for positive change for any college composition teacher who truly cares if their students learn!