Giving Students What They Need to Succeed in College

As freshman composition instructors, we can help our students gain information literacy by introducing them to and making them a part of the discourse community of the internet. If we presuppose that our students are already computer savvy because of their age, we are doing some of them a disservice (“Writing Technology”). To many students from a low socioeconomic background, the internet, if they use it at all, is simply a new kind of mailbox, sitting empty or collecting junk mail which occasionally needs to be thrown away (Rothbaum, Martland, and Jannsen). We can give them life skills they need, including how to integrate their learning (Abbot and Nantz), while increasing their writing and reading skills and encouraging their completion of college by involving them in an academic community (Tinto). All of this can be done using the internet. I know it can make a difference because I have done it in my classroom.

This is my proposal for TYCA-SW. I have already written the paper, but I figure I shouldn’t publish it until after I’ve presented it. For all I know, they might print the papers. (I don’t think so, but I’ve never been to this conference.)

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