NOTE: You may leave comments on this blog for the purposes of making inquiries about the blog content or the course. HOWEVER, keep in mind that the blog is PUBLIC. DO NOT leave personal information here. You may email me at Lisa.Dickson@unbc.ca.
Here you will find any general announcements regarding readings, class activities, assignments or updates to this blog.
NEW APRIL 9:
Here we are, the last “class” day of the semester. You had the weirdest year. One semester of disruption was bad enough; two in a row is a little over-the-top. Someone should have a word with the writers.
You’ve all been remarkable and I’m so happy to have had the chance to meet you and to work and learn with you. My time in the classroom with you has always been the best part of my week and, to be honest, I’m feeling that loss acutely. I know that the circumstances are difficult for you all in complex ways. We are all learning a lot about being a person in these times. I hope that you’re finding ways to stay in touch with the things that make you feel like people. I hope that, if you are struggling, you are able to connect with the helpers. Remember that UNBC has lots of helpers – the Wellness Centre, Counselling, the First Nations Centre, Student Life, your profs. We all want to make sure you’re doing okay. So, as Mr. Rogers says, look for the helpers.
Thank you so much for bringing your brains and your hearts, your willingness to share and to try, your curiosity and your hopefulness. Every day you teach me how to be a person, how to share and try and to be curious and hopeful. We don’t know what this world is going to look like when we can all meet again, but I know that you will bring all of those qualities with you and it will be a better place because of your presence in it.
Also, remember this: You don’t have to be amazing every day. Sometimes you can take off your cape and watch movies in your PJs.
Get your sleeps. Eat your foods. Be well.
- I am still working on assignments. Because computer time is very bad for my arms and because all I do is computer time in our new reality, I am having to set a slower pace than usual. But I will get everything to you as soon as I possibly can. I apologize for the delays and I thank you again for your patience.
- Office Hours. I will be open for office hours this week, Thursday 12:30-2:00. Please keep an eye on your email for that link to the Bluejeans session. After this week I will not be holding open office hours but will be available for appointments. I am also willing to host you if you would like to set up some small study groups. Email me to make those appointments.
- Take-Home Exam. I am working on this document and will send it out to those of you who signed up for the final. Hopefully this will happen on Wednesday, so please keep an eye on your UNBC email.
- I hope you are all well and are getting your sleeps and all the colours of food. Take good care.
1.I have sent you the URL for the Aphra Behn narrated PPT and have posted a version without the narration on the Links/Docs page.
2. I am still working on your assignments. I have completed the Reading Journals/Concept Maps and will be sending you your feedback today. Because my arms are quite terrible at the moment, I can only cut/paste/email/do computer things for limited periods, so it might take me a little bit to get all of those out to you. Thank you for your patience.
3. I will be holding Bluejeans office hours again today from 12:30-1:30 (see the link in your email). I have so far had no takers, so I’m considering moving to an appointment-only model for next week. Email me to make your appointment. That said, I also know that some of you are missing talking about the material with your groups, so, if anyone would like to set up a group study and needs an online venue, get in touch and I can set you up a breakout room in Bluejeans.
March 30: UPDATE: I have sent a NEW URL to your UNBC email accounts for the Matthew Arnold narrated ppt.
- REQUEST FOR HELP: Some students have been having trouble getting the narration to play on the Matthew Arnold PPT (URL in the email I sent to you last week). If you WERE able to make it play, please send me an email. I am trying to figure out where the problem is so that I can devise an appropriate fix.
- GRADING: I am working on your assignments. This process is slower than usual because I need to do everything on the computer and, as we know, my issues with my shoulders make that a bit problematic. I am almost done your Reading Journals/Concept Maps and hope to have those comments to you soon. Thank you for your patience. NOTE: PLEASE remember to use the requested FORMAT FOR NAMING FILES and to use WORD or an equivalent for your files. This practice will help me to keep track of your assignments and comment upon them more easily.
- APHRA BEHN ppt: I am working on this, but I want to figure out what the issue is with the narrated slides before I move forward. Again, thanks for your patience.
MARCH 24: I have sent you the URL for the Matthew Arnold narrated PPT. I have also put a non-narrated version of this PPT on the “Links/Docs” page. I will be spending the rest of this week on your assignments, so please keep an eye on your email for updates.
Reminder: I will be holding virtual drop-in hours on Bluejeans WED 9-10 and THURS 12:30-2:30. I sent you the URL to access these meetings. Please check your UNBC email. As these are public sessions, if you would like to discuss anything of a personal nature, send me an email and we can set up a separate private session.
Finally, I hope you are all doing okay. Remember to get your sleeps! Drop by on Bluejeans and let me know how it’s going.
MARCH 23, 2020
I have completed a narrative PPT for Matthew Arnold. Because of the size of this file, I cannot upload it here. Therefore, I will send you a URL to access the file in my Dropbox. Please check your UNBC inbox tomorrow.
MARCH 20, 2020
ANNOUNCEMENTS: Please always be sure to read down the page to make sure you have not missed any announcements.
TODAY’S PAPERS DUE: Today will be my last day on campus for a while. If anyone is around who wants to drop off a paper, I will be in my office until 4PM. However, I will accept electronic submissions so long as you follow the instructions on the information document I sent out previously:
FUTURE ASSIGNMENTS: Given the developing situation, I am going to request that ALL FUTURE ASSIGNMENTS for this semester be submitted by EMAIL as per the instructions in the document linked above.
REMIX/FINAL EXAM: If you are still planning to do a REMIX in lieu of the final take-home exam, please contact me and we will confirm format and submission expectations. If you would like to switch from the remix to the exam, please email me to make that switch. The exams will only be distributed to the people on my list, so you cannot simply “default” to the exam if you change your mind.
OFFICE HOURS: I will be holding online office hours using Bluejeans video conferencing. I will send you the URL via your UNBC email. We will hold hours at the regular times: WED 9-10 and THURS 12:30-2:30. If you want to chat outside of these times, send me an email and I can open a separate session.
CHECKING IN: I hope that you are all coping okay with our rapidly changing circumstances. Remember to look after yourselves. Anything to do with the course can be dealt with and we don’t want anyone to make themselves vulnerable to illness by adding stress. If you want to talk privately about the course or the assignments or just to check in, drop me an email and we can open a Bluejeans session and have a chat. Be well and stop touching your face! 🙂
MARCH 19, 2020
- Please make sure you are reading downthread here to catch any announcements you might have missed.
- A reminder of the COVID19 update and instructions document I posted on the weekend:ENGL 300 COVID19 class plan and instructions
- OFFICE HOURS:
- Today: DROP-IN hours 12:30-3:30.
- FRI March 20: 10-4PM (for collecting assignments)
- NEXT WEEK: I will be working from home starting Monday, March 23 except on days when assignments are due. I will be setting up some online office hours through Bluejeans and will send out the URL for that on the morning of my office hours. For consistency’s sake, we will keep them at the same time as usual: WED 9-10 and THURS 12:30-3:30.
- I am still looking for a few more volunteers to switch from the remix to the take-home exam. If you are interested in this option, please send me an email.
MARCH 18, 2020
ADDITIONAL: please check your UNBC email as I have sent you a link to a narrated PPT for Oscar Wilde. I non-narrated version is also posted on the Links/Docs page. Please also have a look at the PPT entitled “Aesthetics” as this has some additional information, page numbers and quotations that you might find useful.
- I am still looking for volunteers to switch from the Remix to the take-home final exam. This exam will look exactly like the mid-term.
- I am working out some technical difficulties with posting my narrated PPTs. You should have the PPT for Wilde soon. Please stand by.
- Please remember to look at the COVID19 update and instructions document linked in the message below.
MARCH 17, 2020
A reminder of the COVID19 update and instructions document I posted on the weekend:
READING LIST REVISIONS: In light of the extra cognitive load we are all experiencing as we cope with the new circumstances, I have decided to lighten your reading responsibilities for the remainder of the term. You will be responsible now for the following readings:
Oscar Wilde, Matthew Arnold, and Aphra Behn.
There are PPTs available on the Links/Docs page for Wilde (“Aestheticism) and Arnold (“Arnold: Liberal Humanism”), and I will add one for Behn soon. Also, as this is the “teaching an old dog new tricks” season, I will be learning how to do some narrated versions of the PPTs for you so that I can walk you through the texts. Please keep an eye out for those announcements.
And, as we are moving into our new reality, please keep an eye on the blog as I will be adding materials and making announcements there. If you are experiencing added pressure because of the COVID19 precautions and would like to discuss some strategies with me, I am available.
I will be in my office 9-3 every day this week, 9-4 on Friday, or you can send an email. Remember that there are services available to you through Counselling, the First Nations Centre and the Wellness Centre if you need some additional help.
Take good care of yourselves and each other.
MARCH 14, 2020:
As you have heard by now, Faculty have been asked to shift away from face-to-face course delivery to a version of online instruction. I am still working on the details, but I have drafted an information document to help you get sorted in terms of our class time and assignments. Please read the document linked below carefully. I have also sent it to your UNBC email.
I know that you have been asked to cope with a lot over this past school year. I am tremendously impressed with your grace and adaptability. That said, I am aware that some of you may find that these new circumstances place unexpected pressures on you. Please feel free to contact me if you are having difficulty with these new measures and class plans. We will all have to be flexible and compassionate during the coming days. I promise to do what I can to make this transition manageable for all of you.
March 2, 2020: Hi all. I have meant to post the link to the CBC Sunday Edition panel discussion of Literature and Humanities degrees. You will find that our class discussion of the issues played an important role in that piece and I want to thank you again for your valuable insights. You can listen to the piece by clicking the link below:
Feb 5, 2020: I have replaced the PPTs for HUME on the Links/Docs page. The content is similar to the older version, but I have adjusted page numbers for the new textbook and have added some examples and questions for next class.
Jan 24, 2020: I have updated the PPT for Augustine: “Augustine and Polysemy Revised 2020.” There are no new slides here. I have simply amalgamated the two PPTs previously posted into one document.
Jan 16, 2020: My by-appointment student hours today are curtailed due to a committee meeting I must attend. I will be in my office today 12:30-1:15. I don’t have anyone signed up yet, though, so please keep in mind that you can sign up for a 20minute meeting by putting your name on the form on my office door.
Jan 15, 2020: Today we are experiencing extreme cold. I will be holding my classes as usual but I don’t want anyone to put themselves at risk to get to school on the bus. Just email me to let me know if you can’t make it so that I can make plans and adjust our schedule.
Also, I usually have some snacks in my office for anyone who needs one. Feel free to drop by to get a granola bar. If you come to my student drop-in hours, I’ll even make you tea!
Jan 10, 2020: I have placed a copy of the textbook on reserve in the library. I am in contact with the bookstore and will let you know when additional copies will be available.
JAN 7, 2020: Due to a scheduling change, I have REPLACED the READINGS AND ASSIGNMENT SCHEDULE posted yesterday. Please update your files.