“In the News”: Researching and Writing about Current Events

Students enrolling in first year writing courses today are doing so at a very interesting juncture of American history. — almost three years since the Presidential election of 2016. That is, over the past three years, there have been sweeping changes in the national political landscape. These have occurred as the administration of President Barak Obama has receded and the administration of President Donald Trump has advanced into national leadership. Resulting current events have been of national and international significance.

In response, I have been surveying students, to determine topics and related themes they prefer to explore, during this volatile season of change. The top six themes to emerge are: environmentalism, immigration, racism, social and mass media, technology and women’s issues. This course design is based on those choices.

The class will form six small groups to brainstorm, collaborate, research and write about topics related to these key themes. Students will compose four three to five page essays, in the following formats: problem-solution, comparison/contrast, cause and effect, and the literary analysis essay. A more detailed description of course requirements follows.

Professor Colleen Birchett, Ph.D.