Writing Class: How Class-Based Culture Influences Community College Student Experience in College Writing
AuthorMorris, Myla Bianca
AdvisorCucchiara, Maia Bloomfield
Committee memberHorvat, Erin McNamara, 1964-
Smith, Michael W. (Michael William), 1954-
SubjectEducation, Community College
Permanent link to this recordhttp://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12613/1958
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AbstractThis study was designed to build on the existing research on teaching and learning in community college contexts and the literature of college writing in two-year schools. The work of Pierre Bourdieu formed the primary theoretical framework and composition theory was used to position this study in the literature of the college writing discipline. Employing qualitative research methods and a critical working-class perspective, this study reflects a combined data set of participant observation, in-depth personal interview, and document analysis, giving shape to the experiences of fourteen students in one section of a first-year college writing course. This ethnographic study provided fruitful data regarding the nature of student/teacher relationships and students’ negotiation of authority in the classroom and in their writing. The results showcase the value of in-depth, qualitative research in college writing classrooms, a perspective with great potential to reveal underlying factors for student behaviors and outcomes in two-year literacy education.
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Community College Students' Awareness and Use of College InformationCaldwell, Corrinne A.; Horvat, Erin McNamara, 1964-; Goyette, Kimberly A.; Davis, James Earl, 1960-; Partlow, Michelle Chaplin, 1941- (Temple University. Libraries, 2014)This qualitative case study utilized interviews with community college students enrolled in at least one developmental course to describe how students accessed college information and used this information to solidify or adjust their educational aspirations. College information sources included relatives, friends, classmates, professors, advisors, and other college personnel. Bourdieu's cultural capital and Tinto's integration frameworks were used as guiding theories. This study utilized semi-structured interviews with 15 first-time, full-time, remedial students at a suburban community college in the northeastern United States. Interviews conducted in the fall and spring semesters explored students' perceptions of college information sources in order to gain insight into how students viewed information and its implications over time. This study identified four categories that broadly characterize students' information seeking and application behavior: students were classified as dreamers, drifters, passengers, or planners. Students classified as dreamers had difficulty aligning their career and educational goals. While college information was an issue for dreamers, they required more intensive guidance about their larger educational picture before information about intermediary steps would be meaningful for them. Drifters had informed educational goals, but possessed incomplete information or had difficulty applying strategies to reach these goals. Passengers and planners were well-informed and had specific strategies to accomplish their educational aspirations. Planners actively sought out information. Passengers benefited from a guide, such as a dedicated advisor or mentor, who helped them to interpret and apply the information. This study suggests that just presenting students with information is insufficient; to get students on surer footing, colleges should explore both decreasing the need for information in the first place and providing students assistance with applying information to their unique situations.
Conceiving College Writers and What Influences Their Success in the TransitionGoldblatt, Eli; Smith, Michael W. (Michael William), 1954-; Williams, Roland Leander; Campbell, Angela (Temple University. Libraries, 2021)This study sought to form joint conceptions of success by creating a habits of mind orientational framework drawn from university administrative and practitioner scholarship and theory. Previous literature directed at university writing higher-level administrators and practitioners in first-year writing programs and writing centers was largely engaged in battle for control of determining what success means for incoming writers and how programs can support this version of success. This framework served as the basis for this study’s methodologies for the collection as well as analysis of data. Data was collected from twelve university stakeholders who support freshmen writers through first-year writing programs and writing centers at a small Catholic university in the Northeast. These data were collected using three different methods: semi-structured interviews, ranking activities and retroactive reflections. I found that the members from the three groups of university writing stakeholders shared either cognitive, interpersonal or intrapersonal orientations when conceiving what habits make writers successful and what programmatic mechanisms can help writers form these habits. These three groups did not, however, largely prioritize writers possessing or learning the same habits within each domain. The main commonality between groups sharing a cognitive domain orientation are that the habits they privileged look to preserve conventions grounded in a white Western rhetorical tradition. Yet, writing instructors and tutors mostly do not explicitly teach these conventions because they are expected to have been acquired in high school. Thus, students of color and/or from low income backgrounds are pushed to prepare themselves to meet these conventional expectations and abandon their own culture’s priorities and conventions if they are to succeed. Groups that had inter - and intrapersonal domain orientations privileged addressing each incoming writer’s individual needs through collaboration or teaching them an actionable process that can be continuously used in each new writing context. Based on these findings, I assert that utilizing a habits of mind orientational framework can benefit transitioning writers because university writing stakeholders can identify a single set of habits from each domain that can be consistently emphasized and reinforced through programmatic mechanisms.