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Week 10: How do we use new tools to design and manage our digital work?

I’m at the tail end of a very long day, and I’m leaving early tomorrow morning for the PCA/ACA conference, so this update will be short and (hopefully) sweet. Here we go…

Next week, Mandy and Sanglin will be our discussion superheroes, and Kelly will demonstrate the social bookmarking service Delicious. (If you’ve ever wondered about Delicious, you might want to set up an account before Kelly’s presentation next week.) In class, we’ll discuss three chapters that address how contemporary digital technologies are affecting writing workplaces, and our workshop will focus on developing sound research methods for the Research Design project.

To read before class:

  • Digital Literacies for Technical Communication, Part 2 (pp. 85–143). (This is the shortest reading assignment of the entire semester, and I’m not adding any additional readings, so please read the heck out of these three chapters and come to class ready to have a solid discussion.)

To do before class:

  • Create the pages you think you will include in your electronic portfolio (even if some of them only contain placeholder text right now), then select a theme or template that you plan to use on your site. Tip: If you’re using WordPress, install and test a lot of themes to get a feel for which one(s) will work best for the type of site you’re creating. Resist the urge to settle for the first theme that isn’t atrocious.
  • Start working on your ten bibliography entries for the Research Design project. These aren’t due until April 10, but you might want to “claim” your sources in the Annotated Bibliography folder in Google Drive and begin drafting text for a few entries.

Bonus reading (as time and interest permit):

  • Read a really great novel you’ve been meaning to read for a while. Read part of it in print and the other part on your iPad, then think deeply about the differences between these two formats. :-)

I’ll be out of town until Sunday, but I’ll try to check email at least once a day, so please let me know if you have any questions about these plans. Otherwise, I’ll see you next week, either during my office hours (T 1–4; W 9–12) or in class on Wednesday.