DVP Workshop on Student Research for Faculty



Don Jones, Program Coordinator

The 2021 NEH Distinguished Visiting Professor, Bruce Ballenger, will be leading a two-day virtual workshop on May 25th and 27th from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The workshop will be limited to 12-16 participants, so please apply by May 3rd, as explained below. 

Bruce Ballenger, an emeritus professor of English at Boise State University, is the author of seven books, including the best-selling textbook: The Curious Researcher (Pearson 9th ed.) and the related book: Beyond Note Cards: Rethinking the Freshman Research Paper. This workshop will continue the 2020-21 DTH focus on research assignments and, as Ballenger explains: “An Amateur’s Raid in a World of Specialist”: Reimaging Student Research. 

We ask students to write research-based papers more than any other writing assignment in college. While it has been a fixture in the undergraduate curriculum since the 1920s, the “research paper” is also the writing assignment that generates the most frustration among students and instructors. In this workshop, we’ll reimagine how to teach research-based writing to make it align more closely to the spirit of inquiry that animates our scholarly efforts. We’ll examine why students struggle with the assignment, including how they must unlearn some of what they think they know. Then, explore how to reframe the assignment as an activity that focuses on the question rather than the answer. The theoretical issues addressed will include discourse variation or re-genre writing, unlearning, and students’ epistemological assumptions. The workshop will highlight a series of activities that instructors can later use in their classrooms. A pre-workshop reading, titled “A Captive Genre” from Beyond Notecards, will be provided as PDF. Participants will be expected to participate in a follow-up event in Fall 2021 (date TBD). 

There is a $350 stipend for participants attending the workshop in May ($250) and the fall event ($100). Any faculty member of the University of Hartford is eligible to apply, and the application should include:

Name, UH email, faculty position, and years of service

Teaching area(s) and expertise

Reasons of workshop interest


Applications should be emailed by Monday, May 3rd at 4 p.m. to Don Jones, the 2020-22 Distinguished Teaching Humanist ([email protected]). Accepted applicants will be notified by Tuesday, May 11. Please contact Don Jones with any questions.