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WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 28, 2015
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3RD ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE CONSORTIUM FOR CRITICAL READING, WRITING, AND THINKING AT
Photo Caption A: Keynote speaker Ann Jurecic, PhD, Associate Professor, English, at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, and co-author of “Habits of the Creative Mind,” a non-traditional textbook on college essay writing, speaks during the 3rd Annual Conference of The Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking at Berkeley College in Midtown Manhattan.
More than 100 college and university faculty and graduate students from around the nation shared best practices on effective teaching and improved student learning when they convened for the 3rd Annual Conference of the Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking (CCRWT) in Midtown Manhattan at Berkeley College on October 23, 2015.
Michael Jacobs, DA, Co-chair, English, Berkeley College School of Liberal Arts, and CCRWT Director, said, “This year’s theme of Dialogue and Collaboration between and across the Disciplines reflects the cross-disciplinary work that must be embraced by the academy. We are starting to see dedicated faculty both within and outside of the liberal arts take ownership of reading, writing and thinking in their own courses. We see serious stakeholders beyond those who teach English emphasizing these fundamentals.”
“Deep thinking and learning serves business well. There is a connection between deep understanding of a topic and the ability to communicate about it,” said keynote speaker, Ann Jurecic, PhD, Associate Professor of English at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, and co-author of Habits of the Creative Mind, an innovative non-traditional textbook on college essay writing, published in September, 2015. Dr. Jurecic spoke on a topic she strongly cares about – Cultivating Curiosity and Creativity in an Era of Standardization.
“We need to awaken their curiosity,” said Dr. Jurecic, describing how to help college students. “I am deeply concerned that the emphasis on test standards is taking the innovation out of education. We need to reconstruct humanistic education, not as a consumer good.”
An example was presented in a joint-workshop session, On Teaching the Text: Across Genres and Disciplines, by Maryam Alikhani, a graduate student at Columbia University and Adjunct professor at Berkeley College. Her presentation, Technical Poetry: A Case Study of Teaching Poetry Writing to Engineering Students, focused on efficacy of creative writing instruction for students who do not inherently see its relevance in their majors or career aspirations. In the featured workshop, Teaching Habits of the Writerly Mind, Dr. Jurecic showcased a number of classroom practices aimed at maintaining student focus and keeping them engaged. This included having participants take three minutes to draw the face of the person sitting next to them.
This year’s conference presenters included faculty and graduate students from Argosy University, Berkeley College, California State University, Central Connecticut State University, Columbia University, Hunter College, Iona College, New York City College of Technology, Queensborough Community College, Rutgers University, St. John’s University, Stony Brook University, and the University of Maryland - Eastern Shore.
CCRWT is a cross-institutional collaboration comprised of faculty from Berkeley College, Central Connecticut State University, Iona College, and Queensborough Community College. The CCRWT mission is to create spaces for ongoing discourse on effective pedagogy and improved student learning in higher education. Central to this endeavor is the facilitation of an annual conference on critical reading, writing and thinking across disciplines. You can visit online at CCRWT.weebly.com.
A leader in providing career-focused education since 1931, Berkeley College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and enrolls more than 8,300 students – including more than 700 international students – in its Baccalaureate and Associate degree and Certificate programs. Students can study in more than 20 career fields. Berkeley College is comprised of the Larry L. Luing School of Business, the School of Professional Studies, the School of Health Studies, the School of Liberal Arts, and the School of Graduate Studies, which offers a Master of Business Administration degree in Management.
Berkeley College has three New York locations – Midtown Manhattan, Brooklyn and White Plains. In New Jersey there are six locations – Clifton, Dover, Newark, Paramus, Woodbridge and Woodland Park. Berkeley College Online® serves a global population. In January 2015, U.S. News & World Report named Berkeley College one of the Best Colleges for Online Bachelor’s Degrees for the second consecutive year. The website address iswww.BerkeleyCollege.edu.
Photo Caption B: Mary McDonough, PhD, Provost, Berkeley College; Ann Jurecic, PhD Associate Professor, English, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, and keynote speaker; and Michael Jacobs, DA, Co-chair, English, Berkeley College School of Liberal Arts, and CCRWT Director at the 3rd Annual Conference of The Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking at Berkeley College in Midtown Manhattan.
Photo Caption C: Conference attendees at the 3rd Annual Conference of The Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking engage in discussion at Berkeley College in Midtown Manhattan. The teacher-scholars attending the day-long conference enthusiastically learned from each other during the keynote presentation, 15 faculty-led presentation sessions, breakfast, lunch and the networking reception.
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