15thC Cats

by Dr Davis on October 8, 2015

cats 15th century


References Comics

by Dr Davis on September 28, 2015

From PhD comics:

references 1

references 2


Grammar Goofs that Make You Look Silly

by Dr Davis on September 27, 2015

15 common grammar errors explained–and warned against.


English is Weird.

by Dr Davis on September 23, 2015

English is weird


A Video for Class

by Dr Davis on September 23, 2015

What English Actually Sounded Like 500 Years Ago.

When you are teaching early modern drama…


CFP: World Religions and Professional Communication

by Dr Davis on September 21, 2015

Special Issue: “World Religions and Professional Communication”
Journal of Rhetoric, Professional Communication, and Globalization
[email protected]

Scholarly conversations about the influence of religion on professional communication have largely been absent in our discipline’s published literature, yet religion often intersects with the work of teachers, researchers, and practitioners. It intersects with rhetorical patterns at many levels and contexts, including the organizations in which we work and volunteer, the sites where we conduct research and solve problems, and our teaching/training practices with students, clients, co-workers community partners, and the many other populations we regularly serve in our professional lives.

The Journal of Rhetoric, Professional Communication, and Globalization invites proposals on the topic of “World Religions and Professional Communication,” broadly envisioned, that address the focus of the special issue and are grounded in relevant theories of the discipline. Proposals authored by scholars and practitioners outside Euro-American contexts or whose work connects to sensitive areas of the world are especially welcome. The volume seeks to include work that represents the diversity of the world’s major religions (in terms of world population: Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, New Age) and others (e.g., Baha’i Faith, Jainism, Judaism, Sikhism, along with indigenous religious traditions, etc.).

Scholarly articles, teaching cases, short reports, interview transcripts, annotated bibliographies, and book reviews will be considered that may include the following topics and genres:

· Analysis of religious values that influence professional communication in the workplace, especially as connected to globalization and large-scale organizational initiatives

· Case studies involving charitable/religious initiatives by for-profit industries, academic institutions, and faith-based, humanitarian, activist, not-for-profit, or non-governmental organizations

· Analysis of religious foundations and influences in areas such as law, politics, education, and economic systems that directly impact global professional communication

· Rhetorical analysis of religious influences on public policy and advocacy, especially as connected to globalization issues such as immigration, economic development, human rights, and justice.

· Analysis of religious values that influence the teaching and development of literacy and how those values impact global professional communication

· Reviews of inter-organizational partnerships and collaborations that are influenced by ethical or moral considerations, which are often tied to religions

· Analyses of historical artifacts or events that document the influence of religious beliefs on the treatment of vulnerable populations

· Examinations of corporate social responsibility (a.k.a., corporate conscience) initiatives of organizations with religious aspects to their brand/identity, and the impact of such initiatives on target and other populations, public perception, and efforts in large-scale problem solving

· Administrative perspectives connected to religion, such as issues faced by teachers of professional communication at religious-based academic institutions in domestic and global settings

· Narratives exploring the influence of religion on the careers of academic faculty and researchers in fields closely related to professional, technical, and scientific communication, including agriculture, business, computer science, engineering, medicine, and rhetoric

Proposals (500 words) are due November 1, 2015

Full manuscripts (5000-7500 words/scholarly articles, APA style) are due March 15, 2016

Proposals should be sent as email attachments to [email protected]

The guest editors welcome dialogue regarding potential ideas well in advance of submission deadlines.

The Journal of Rhetoric, Professional Communication, and Globalization publishes articles on the theory, practice, and teaching of technical and professional communication in critical global and intercultural contexts such as business, manufacturing, environment, information technology, and others. As a global initiative, the Journal welcomes manuscripts with diverse approaches and contexts of research, but manuscripts are to be submitted in English and grounded in relevant theory and appropriate research methods. The Journal is peer reviewed with an editorial board consisting of experienced researchers and practitioners from over 20 countries. ISSN: 2153-9480, rpcg.org


CFP: Multimodal Rhetoric

by Dr Davis on September 20, 2015

The Journal of Multimodal Rhetorics, 2016 inaugural issue
full name / name of organization:
The Journal of Multimodal Rhetorics
contact email:
[email protected]
The Journal of Multimodal Rhetorics invites scholarly essays for our inaugural issue. Proposed articles can focus on the multisensory aspects of rhetoric and persuasion within:

- Art and visual culture
- Digital media
- Material culture
- Video and tabletop games
- Music and film
- Performance studies
- Multimodal composition practices
- Multimodal pedagogies within classroom spaces
- Crafts, hacks, and DIY endeavors

In addition, we are interested in essays which theorize the epistemic relationship(s) between rhetoric and sensory perception/experience.

The journal welcomes both traditional written essays and multimedia submissions, including hyperlinked webtexts, videos, podcasts, and narrated slideshows. Essays should be received by November 1, 2015 in order to be considered for inclusion in the inaugural issue.


Suggested length: 3,500-5,000 words (longer pieces considered on a case-by-case basis)

Preferred editorial style: MLA

Number of copies required: 1 (by email)

Number of peer readers prior to publication: 2-3 (double-blind process)

Special submission requirements: Email your essay or files to [email protected] as an attachment (traditional essays should be in Microsoft Word format). Articles should be free of identifying information, in order to facilitate anonymous review. In the body of your email, please list your name, institutional affiliation, and a brief (no more than 100-word) abstract of the project’s focus and primary claims. JOMR does not accept simultaneous submissions.

Unsure about whether your project fits? Our editorial team is happy to answer preliminary queries at [email protected] Questions about potential book reviews can be routed to [email protected]

For more information about the journal, visit www.multimodalrhetorics.com


Writing Critically Important for Career Success

by Dr Davis on September 20, 2015

Communication skills are critically important for both academic performance and career success. Both educators and employers emphasize the importance of oral (Barker & Hall, 1995; Maes, Weldy, & Icenogle, 1997) as well as written (Bacon & Anderson, 2004; Quible & Griffin, 2007) communication skills. However, more emphasis has been placed on written communication skills in recent years as technological advancements such as e- mail, text messaging, and instant messaging devices have become more common, and as businesses focus more on knowledge and sharing (Brandt, 2005). While business educators and employers agree that effective writing skills are important in higher education as well as in the workplace (Kellogg & Raulerson, 2007), researchers suggest that many business students may lack this important skill (Ashton, 2007; Henricks, 2007; Quible & Griffin, 2007). (Weldy, Maes, and Harris 12)

Weldy, Teresa G., Jeanne D. Maes, and Jeanne D. Harris. “Process and Practice: Improving Writing Ability, Confidence in Writing, and Awareness of Writing Skills’ Importance.” Journal of Innovative Education Strategies 3.1 (September 2014): 12-26. Web. 17 September 2015.

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Peer Review

by Dr Davis on September 19, 2015

Peer review is very helpful in the writing classroom.

My first semester at my uni I had students doing a peer review. I had already told students that there was nothing we were doing in class that we did for less than 2 reasons, because I didn’t have time to teach everything I wanted them to learn. One raised his hand and asked what the point was and weren’t they wasting their time.

I told the whole class:
Peer review is useful for the person whose paper has responses. They see where others have identified the writing as being confusing and interesting. They can adjust for one while leaving the other.
Peer review is useful for the person who is writing the feedback, because it is easier to identify errors in other people’s work than in your own. However, identifying the errors in someone else’s work might tread you to recognize them in your own and/or to pay attention to them.
Peer review is useful for the person who has done the assignment well because they can see that they are ahead of the curve.
Peer review is useful for the person who has done the assignment poorly because they can see that they are behind the curve.
Peer review is useful for the person who is confused about the assignment as they can see other people’s approaches to it.
Peer review is also useful for the person who has done a good job but wants to improve as reading other people’s work can help you to think of your own in new ways.

Peer review is increasingly conducted in writing classes since the prevalence of communicative approach in recent years, and it has been proved as an effective approach to improve the writing skill (Corbin, 2012), to increase motivation to writing, and to learn how to treat writing as a collaborative social activity (Farrah, 2012).(24)

It was found that not only did students enjoy the process and product, but also a significant development and change was observed in their writing skill. The peer review process engaged the students in frequent reading and writing, fostered their critical reading and reflection, sharpened their writing knowledge and skills, helped them to manage their learning schedule, increased their motivation and joy of writing, and promoted their information literacy.(32)

Shokrpour, Nasrin, Nikta Keshavarz, and Seyed Mohammad Jafari. “The Effect of Peer Review on Writing Skill of EFL Students.” Khazar Journal of Humanities & Social Sciences 16.3 (2013): 24-35. Web. 17 September 2015.


Assessment for Writing Improvement

by Dr Davis on September 18, 2015

Frey, Nancy and Douglas Fisher. “A Formative Assessment System for Writing Improvement.” English Journal 103.1 (2013): 66-71. Web. 17 September 2015.

Frey and Fisher found that (as most of us have figured out) comments after the writing is over are not helpful nor are they read much. Instead, during the drafting stage, feedback, comments, and suggestions are most beneficial.

“Give us your top two priorities for the kind of feedback that would be most useful to you on this writing draft.” A surprising 92 percent chose “Edits to improve my writing” as the most important kind of feedback, followed by “Specific and detailed information about my performance” at 84 percent. (66)

we began providing students more detailed feedback about their progress. (67)

When a mistake is pointed out, the student knows what to do next; when errors are pointed out, the student does not know what to do next. (69)

We learned that in most cases, students don’t need another version of the same lesson that had been taught previously. Rather, they needed time to apply knowledge in the company of a skilled adult who coached them through confusions and partial understanding. This guided instruction uses three key scaffolds: ques- tions to check for understanding, prompts to apply specific cognitive and metacognitive resources, and cues when the learner needs his or her attention shifted in a more overt manner (Fisher and Frey). (70)

As Grant Wiggins noted, a formative assessment system requires purpose-driven instruction, systems for collecting and analyzing student work, and ways to organize responses to the errors that students make. (71)

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