Davis considers “the possibilities of the paperless classroom” if it is conducted with a
CMS in a hybrid setting that uses technology-enhanced in-class activities as well as
technology out of class in the form of e-mail, online quizzes, e-conferences, and
synchronous chat. While he acknowledges that technology can be a “diversionary tactic
employed by frustrated teachers” that gets in the way of learning, Davis reports on a
business communication course for working adult professionals wherein technology
made possible “an efficient and concise method for storing and evaluating papers and
communicating with students.” While Davis does not argue that digital responses to
student writing necessarily leads to better writing, he indicates that this medium allows
for a clearer and more orderly space in which to respond, and that the students thereby
Davis, Evan, and Hardy Sarah. “Teaching Writing in the Space of Blackboard.”
Computers and Composition Online: An International Journal
Spring 2003. 10
Aug. 2007 < http://www.bgsu.edu/cconline/DavisHardy/index.html>.
Davis and Hardy argue that with course management software, the classroom has
changed both literally—in terms of an electronic blackboard replacing a chalk-based one-
-and metaphorically—in terms of virtual space. Although e-mail, synchronous
communication, listserves, and file exchanges have been studied separately, they have not
been studied for the effect of placing them all within one CMS. Focusing on the use of
Blackboard within a traditional classroom setting, they examine metaphors, consider
dialogics, provide a “walk through” of its technological spaces, and offer thirteen tips for
teaching with Blackboard.
Davis, Thomas, and Mark Trebian. "Shaping the Destiny of Native American People by
Ending the Digital Divide." EDUCAUSE Review
36.1 (2001): 38-46.
Davis and Trebian cite a United States Department of Commerce report on the continued
existence of a digital divide “between those with different levels of income and
education, different racial and ethnic groups, old and young, single- and dual-parent
families, and those with and without disabilities.” They focus, however, on how this
divide affects Native Americans. Because of the remoteness of many Native American
communities, which raises issues of access and equity, Davis and Trebian assert that
technology can and should be part of the solution to the social, economic, and educational
problems that such peoples face. More specifically, among the authors’ recommendations
are improving “hardware, and software technology at tribal colleges and universities,”
and developing “tribally and culturally centered applications of information technology.”
Farmer, Robert. "Instant Messaging: IM Online! RU?" EDUCAUSE Review
Farmer argues that students now entering higher education “demand the integration of
technology into their learning,” and he states that this “is especially important as more
and more institutions, programs, and courses move to an online or blended environment.”
A prominent technology for this entering cohort of students is instant messaging (IM).
Farmer opens with an overview of IM, and then turns to its potential as a learning tool,
where it can be employed to interact and collaborate synchronically, with files “stored in
one location and accessible to everyone.” The author addresses some concerns with IM in
an educational setting, including security and privacy risks, exposure to viruses and
worms, the possibility of distraction, unauthorized usage, slang language by users, and
slow adoption by faculty. These issues notwithstanding, Farmer urges the higher
education community to “seriously consider” incorporating IM so as to create “a more
engaging learning environment.”
Fleckenstein, Kristie S. "Faceless Students, Virtual Places: Emergence and Communal
Accountability in Online Classrooms." Computers and Composition
Responding to the challenge of generating the same quality of “communal
accountability—the shared sense of responsibility students and teachers have to one
another—online as is typical in face-to-face classrooms, Fleckenstein argues that a
complex systems approach to understanding communal dynamics can help online
instructors cultivate deeper communal relations in virtual space. According to her,
complex systems are generated by an ecology that is not just the accumulation of
individual activities but “comes into existence through its interactivity,” the
transformative interaction that causes each element to change and become part of a larger
entity. Opposing such dynamic environments to virtual space functioning merely as what
William Gibson calls a “consensual hallucination” in which students feel that words and
actions have no real consequence, Fleckenstein offers best practices for online instruction
so that students, instructions, and administrators all contribute to a healthy and productive
online learning environment.
Ford, Dwedor Morais. "Technologizing Africa: On the Bumpy Information Highway."
Computers and Composition
24 (2007): 302-316.
Ford questions how many computers are available in academic institutions in Africa, and
he examines three African countries—Ghana, Kenya, and Egypt—to see how often and
in what capacity computers are used in educational settings. Ford examines each
country’s technology initiatives and then looks at statistics of computer use in both the
basic and tertiary education systems. Ford concludes by offering some reasons for the
lack of computer technology in academic settings in these countries.
Ford, Michele. "Preparing Students for Assessment in the Online Class." New
Directions for Teaching and Learning
2002.91 (2002): 77-82.
Ford provides some concrete suggestions for explaining to students the standards that will
be used for classroom assessment. Noting the difficulties of ensuring understanding with
online students, Ford suggests a number of methods, including e-mail and web postings,
for communicating assessment expectations. This article is an important reminder that
redundancy is necessary in communicating with students in online classes.
Gos, Michael W. "Computer Anxiety and Computer Experience: A New Look at an Old
Relationship." The Clearing House
Gos studies the relationship between computer anxiety and experience with computers.
He finds that computer anxiety correlates strongly (r=.759) with previous negative
experience and that this experience accounts for much of the anxiety (r-square=.577). He
argues that computer anxiety is created by negative experience on computers, most
commonly through programming, and that students with no prior experience also are
Gos, Michael W. Where Technology and the Corporate Culture Meet: Toward a
Rhetoric of Hypertext Reports.
Proc. of the Conference of the Southwest/Texas
Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association. 1996 1997.
Gos argues that the pressure in business and industry to achieve a paperless office will
ultimately result in new forms for documents. Using hypertext as an example, he shows
how the changing media will result in changing report formats. He recommends that
students be taught to create documents solely through an analysis of purpose, reader and
media, rather than learning traditional report formats.
Gould, John D., and Nancy Grischkowsky. "Doing the Same Work with Hard Copy and
with Crt Terminals." Human Factors
26 (1984): 323-337.
Spurred by reports of fatigue among users of computer monitors, Gould and
Grischkowsky examine differences between writing tasks accomplished on computer and
with hard copy. While participants did proofread up to 30% faster on hard copy, they
found no differences in proofreading performance, physical comfort, or vision abilities.
Gruber, Sibylle. "Technology and Tenure: Creating Oppositional Discourse in an Offline
and Online World." Computers and Composition
17 (2000): 41-55.
Gruber acknowledges discussions regarding the mislabeling and misunderstanding of the
work of technorhetoricians by traditional faculty, particularly during promotion and
tenure deliberations. She argues that technorhetoricians are not simply outsiders in the
academy. Instead, they often occupy a central role in meeting administrative technology
goals. Gruber complicates the role of technorhetoricians by applying theories of
marginalization to understand how persons in such a role can “enact change in a system
that upholds largely traditional values and that often only gives lip service to innovation,
diversity, and heterogeneity.”
Haas, Christina, and John R. Hayes. "What Did I Just Say? Reading Problems in
Writing with the Machine." Research in the Teaching of English
20.1 (1986): 22-
Computer users report difficulties in reading on screen and often use hard copy for
reading. A series of three experiments found computer users experienced eroded spatial
sense (where in the document things are located), but that more sophisticated systems,
and especially large screens on monitors can eliminate this problem. The authors advise
that purchasing departments consider the impact of display monitor choice. Given the
continuing issue students and teachers have with reading on screen, this article remains
relevant for OWI.
Hailey, David E., Keith Grant-Davie, and Christine A. Hult. "Online Education Horror
Stories Worthy of Halloween: A Short List of Problems and Solutions in Online
Instruction." Computers and Composition
18 (2001): 387-397.
Hailey, Grant-Davie, and Hult provide several examples of volatility in the online
classroom that they ascribe to the technological nature of the classroom itself. They
suggest that frustration in the online classroom tends to escalate quickly, generating
flame wars among students and, in rare cases, spilling outside the classroom as students
take their grievances to administrators at the program, university, and even state level.
Based on their collective experience, the authors outline five key practices to help prevent
or mitigate frustrations evoked by online work: (1) “Visit the class often” to monitor and
manage discussions when necessary; (2) “Learn to recognize warning signs and respond
to them” (e.g., “low frustration threshold,” sense of victimization, and “tendency to
overstate problems”); (3) “Post messages often” to let students know you’re an active
participant; (4) “Respond immediately to relevant posts and to all student e-mail” because
students generally don’t write unless they are genuinely concerned about something; and
(5) “Use the telephone to solve difficult problems and to reinforce support for frustrated
students” because the sound of a human voice can diffuse anger and express concern
more clearly. More generally, the authors warn that teachers must translate and rethink
face-to-face teaching practices for online environments or risk serious unrest online.
Hansen, Wilfred J., Richard Doring, and Lawrence R. Whitlock. "Why an Examination
Was Slower On-Line Than on Paper." International Journal of Man-Machine
10 (1978): 507-519.
Hansen, Doring, and Whitlock study the time required for students to take examinations
on paper versus online. In their measurements, the authors find that online exams
required as much as 100% longer than paper exams. The excess time came from two
sources: time spent navigating through different screens and time spent confused when
the user did not know how to proceed. The study looked at only seven subjects, but it has
potential value in understanding high-stakes situations in OWI settings.
Hart-Davidson, Bill, and Steven D. Krause. "Re: The Future of Computers and Writing:
A Multivocal Textumentary." Computers and Composition
21 (2004): 147-159.
Hart-Davidson and Krause construct a screenplay-style text that collects the voices of
technorhetoricians responding generally to a “resolution” that in the future, computers
and writing will cease to exist as a subfield because all rhetoricians will be expected to
understand and address the role of technology in their scholarship and in their
classrooms. In their response to this prompt and to one another, they examine the role of
computers in writing both historically and theoretically, addressing such questions as
“What is writing?” and “How might the ubiquity of writing affect them personally and
change the discipline as a whole?” If there is a central argument that emerges, it is that
even as technology changes and attitudes about technology change, their work has and
will continue to focus on the intersection of technology and rhetoric.
Hawisher, Gail E., and Cynthia L. Selfe. "The Rhetoric of Technology and the Electronic
Writing Class." College Composition and Communication
42 (1991): 55-65.
Hawisher and Selfe apply rhetorical theory to the use of technology in the writing
classroom in this 1991 article. They argue that a careful theoretical examination of
pedagogical technologies will lead to a more productive use for students and teachers.
Specifically, they suggest that we think carefully about the metaphors applied to
technological spaces, as some (such as “controller,” “gatekeeper,” or “guard”) can lead to
an excess of authority in electronic environments. The ease of establishing authority in
computer environments is something the authors warn us about generally, and this
warning is still relevant in OWI today.
Hawisher, Gail E., and Cynthia L. Selfe, eds. Passions, Pedagogies, and 21
. Logan, UT: Utah State University Press, 1999.
Hawisher and Selfe bring together a number of scholars who consider various aspects of
the ways technology influences communication, literacy, and pedagogy. The collection
consists of 23 chapters divided into four parts: (1) Refiguring Notions of Literacy in an
Electronic World; (2) Revisiting Notions of Teaching and Access in an Electronic Age;
(3) Ethical and Feminist Concerns in an Electronic World; and (4) Searching for notions
of Our Postmodern Literate Selves in an Electronic World. All four sections contain
important work, but the second section, containing chapters such as Marilyn Cooper’s
“Postmodern Pedagogy in Electronic Conversations” and Charles Moran’s “Access: The
A-Word in Technology Studies,” is particularly relevant for investigation in OWI. In the
words of the editors, “the specific technologies we now use have changed the world in
ways that we have yet to identify or appreciate fully”; this text is an effort to make those
Hill, Charles A., David L. Wallace, and Christina Haas. "Revising On-Line: Computer
Technologies and the Revising Process." Computers and Composition
Hill, Wallace, and Haas report an empirical study into the differences between student
and experienced writers using both pen and paper and word processing. They attempt to
determine how the computer affects writers' processes, not just their products. They note
that previous studies lose a sense of the revision process regarding how we can see and
understand revision considerations and decisions occurring in writer's minds but that do
not show up on paper. They determine that task definition plays a greater role in the
writers' choices than do differences in the revising medium. This article is important for
an early understanding of how technology influences writing.
Hirvela, Alan. "Computer-Based Reading and Writing across the Curriculum: Two Case
Studies of L2 Writers." Computers and Composition
22 (2005): 337-356.
Hirvela seeks to uncover how, and to what extent, second language (L2) students use
computers across the disciplines. She conducts a qualitative study of two undergraduate
students using activity logs, personal interviews, and a final questionnaire as the primary
means of obtaining information about computer use. The conclusion reveals that the
students used computers in multiple ways in different settings, even though teacher
instruction on how to engage the computer to complete various class assignments was
Inglis, Alistair. "Selecting an Integrated Learning Environment." Innovation in Open and
Distance Learning: Successful Development of Online and Web-Based Learning
Ed. Fred Lockwood and Anne Gooley. Vol. 1. Routledge, 2001. 88-99.
Inglis discusses the problem of a lack of traditional educational support services
(libraries, tutors, counselors, etc.) for online students. He explains the need for these
support services, then provides a framework for educators to make their own decisions
about such services. He finds the most important features of these systems to be cost,
scalability, and compatibility with existing systems.
Johanek, Cindy, and Rebecca Rickly. "Online Tutor Training: Synchronous
Conferencing in a Professional Community." Computers and Composition
Johanek and Rickly describe an online synchronous conference program, Daedalus
Interchange, and its introduction into the Ball State University writing center. The authors
note that the capabilities of the program match the writing center’s tutor training
philosophies, in which all members of communities have their own voice, so the program
would seem useful technologically and pedagogically. Aiding their analysis is their
inclusion of four transcripts from writing center staff meetings, and they note that the
synchronous conferencing InterChange allows is beneficial to the trainers and the tutors.
They also report on a survey of the tutors that indicates a favorable response to the
program. This early effort at applying pedagogical principles to a technological tool is an
interesting example of how pedagogy and technology can meet.
Johnson-Eilola, Johndan, and Amy C. Kimme Hea. "After Hypertext: Other Ideas."
Computers and Composition
20 (2003): 415-425.
Johnson-Eilola and Kimme Hea re-envision hypertext after its enthusiasm and promise of
the 1990s had waned. They present hypertext as a cultural analogy instead of a simple
tool or “fulfillment of desires.” They argue that a more constructive notion of hypertext
can be built on three tropes: hypertext as kinship, hypertext as battlefield, and hypertext
as rhizome. They demonstrate that these tropes can lead us to a more productive vision
and use of hypertext in the online writing classroom.
Kemp, Fred. "The Daedalus Integrated Writing Environment." Educators' Tech
1.1 (1993): 24-30.
Kemp explains the pedagogical philosophy behind the Daedalus Integrated Writing
Environment (DIWE): If “engaged and committed writers will take care to read their own
text critically and revise carefully,” then adding a variety of online peer and teacher
response and discussion will help to create such writers. DIWE was the first writing
education-based networked software to have text distribution and management tools, as
well as heuristics for invention and internal e-mail for communication. Kemp addresses
basic issues for instructors, such as learning to use such software, and he outlines what he
sees as benefits for students.
Kirtley, Susan. "Student Views on Technology and Writing: The Power of Personal
History." Computers and Composition
22 (2005): 209-230.
Kirtley argues that students are not necessarily as computer savvy as the myth and
literature may suggest. How and where students gain their previous experience affects the
attitudes they have toward computers upon entering college. Kirtley recommends
instructors maintain a designated regular time in a public computer lab to assist students
in their difficulties with the technology.
Laurinen, Leena I., and Miika J. Marttunen. "Written Arguments and Collaborative
Speech Acts in Practising the Argumentative Power of Language through Chat
Debates." Computers and Composition
24 (2007): 230-246.
Laurinen and Marttunen assess the argumentative quality of student speech acts by
examining student debates in an online chat forum. They examine the balance between
collaborative and non-collaborative speech acts by organizing chat responses into seven
functional categories. Consequently, the authors are able to conclude that a majority of
speech acts in the debates do not reach the highest level of argumentative, logical debate.
However, Laurinen and Marttunen also conclude that many students engage in
collaborative speech acts in the chat forum and desire to emotionally validate their
classmates’ responses. Additionally, the authors argue for the usefulness of the chat
debate forum since students using chats are able to reflect on their writing after the fact
by accessing and reviewing their chats in saved files.
LeBlanc, Paul. "Competing Ideologies in Software Design for Computer Aided
Composition." Computers and Composition
7.2 (1990): 7-19.
LeBlanc identifies two ideologies brought to computer-based composition teaching. The
instrumental ideology sees human knowledge as something that can be quantified and
reduced to the mechanical. A dialectic interaction philosophy, however, has writers
working in a discourse community. The latter, he argues, is a better option, since it is
more amenable to the writing process. He recommends composition instructors push for
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