In the Indian academia the focus on teaching "Writing" is relatively new; traditional focus has been on teaching the English language or Communication Skills. The novelty of Academic Writing has called for rigorous efforts in its operation under the Indian context. In addition, the virtual learning environment drawn by the pandemic posed the serious challenge of adopting the academic writing pedagogy to the new format of the virtual classroom. This presentation showcases successful strategies adopted for Undergraduate (UG) and Postgraduate (PG) foundation Writing courses in the Fall semester of 2020 at IITGN for maximum engagement and minimum distraction. The UG and PG courses differed in goals of writing, expected learning outcomes, and practicality. The former was conducted on the basis of general writing with intensive discussion components; the latter was concerned with applicability and transferability of the knowledge and skills acquired in the course to varied discipline-specific writings of the advanced students.Firstly, we will present how the UG writing instructors used "collective notepads" to cater to less motivated UG students’ in-class writing in a visible and trackable way. Using the notepads had two advantages: Instructors could spot students’ speed of writing and the students could stay motivated by their classmates’ writing progress. Secondly, we will focus on the pedagogical practices adopted in the PG course to ensure knowledge and skill transfer to discipline-specific scholarly writing. Finally, we will conclude the presentation with the summary of UG and PG courses’ key components and the points for future improvements.
Sharmita Lahiri, IIT Gandhinagar, India
Jooyoung Kim, IIT Gandhinagar, India