my approach to scholarship

I work every day as a writing scholar.
 
I work every day to promote writing in all of its applications and iterations.
 
I work every day by a set of principles that guide me as teacher, as researcher, as administrator:
 
The Transparency of Best Practices
I maintain an open-source process for all of my activities, carried out as transparently as possible. A recursive process: I think, I plan, I draft, I revise, I edit. While products are a necessary part of the professional, academic system, they by no means define me as a professional. All of my work, even that which is “finished,” is constantly under revision and available for re-use, re-application, re-distribution: teaching, research, administration.
 
To meet my goals as an academic professional, my nature demands that I organize my working life, to account for the time necessary to complete the tasks at hand. Thinking and planning are at the core of my daily routine. I am an obsessive planner. I use my planning as a benchmark, as a means for setting and meeting my standards of expectation. More importantly, planning forces me to document my process, to account for all aspects of my process, to acknowledge my work in all of its messiness and complexity.
 
Drafting, revising, and editing bring my projects closer to completion, and, at the same time, open these same projects up for improvement. My courses, for example, are under constant scrutiny. While I seek consistency from section to section and from semester to semester, so that each student can be assessed accurately over time, each course differs from the previous as I seek (an unattainable) perfection in delivery.
 
The Standards of Expectation
I strive for excellence: to maintain a commitment to my goals, to achieve my goals on a daily, weekly, monthly, annual basis, and to always be a bit better than my best.
 
I set goals regularly, with an understanding that life happens. In other words, some goals are easily met, while others prove elusive, and others just need a bit more time. I revise goals regularly, as well. Each day I organize my working life with short- and long-term goals in mind, trying to do better today than I did yesterday, a bit more than I did last week, while not forgetting to enjoy my family, walk the dog, play a video game, read a guilty-pleasure book, or watch a movie.
 
High standards create a working life of expectation, making the world fresh, new, and exciting. They require concentration and my best effort. They help me maintain a routine that is not rote, a routine that is under revision, a routine that breeds success. High standards force me to take responsibility for all aspects of my working life and evaluate my accomplishments honestly.
 
I try to perform all of my duties with a positive outlook and a workable plan. I want success for myself, but always with an understanding that my success contributes to the larger goals of the community. I can’t be successful without the success of those around me, so I strive daily to provide support everyone wherever and whenever I can.
The Community of Equality
I encourage participation of thought and activity, interactions that enhance how and why I do my work, opportunities to grow as a professional and as a citizen of the world. I do my best and most consistent work in collaboration, reveling in the multiple perspectives of sharp and engaged minds: students, colleagues, friends, and family.
 
I collaborate as a means for creating community, and this collaboration permeates all that I do. For example, as a teacher, I collaborate with my students to achieve the learning goals that we have agreed upon as a community of learners. As teacher, I understand that the educational system affords me certain power and responsibilities as teacher, but I also believe that all learning goals should be equal and equitable in the classroom, no matter how base or simplistic. Success is best achieved when all meet their goals, and maybe a bit more.
 
Support structures for success, for both students and faculty, are imperative for building community over time. As a part of these support structures, I design and implement every procedure, every action, with equity in mind first and foremost. All academic programs should be a shared sense of purpose. Only then can we achieve a greater sense of community, and greater success.
 
I work every day as a writing scholar to contribute to a body of knowledge established by those who came before me, those who walk beside me, and those who will follow.

My approach to: ScholarshipTeachingAdministrationWriting

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