Reading Objects, Watching YouTube, Writing Biography, and Teaching Life Writing: Student Engagement When Learning Online During Covid-19

Kate Douglas, Kylie Cardell, Marina Deller, Edith Hill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In this article we discuss our experiences of team teaching via ‘emergency remote teaching’ a hybrid literature/creative writing subject, ‘Life Writing’, during 2020, amid the Covid-19 pandemic. We explore how a focus on concepts and issues foundational to life writing as a discipline provided unique points of engagement at a challenging time for students. We discuss our experiences via case studies ranging from object life writing to YouTube and biography. The article explains our methods and how we approached with extra sensitivity the fact of challenging conditions affecting student lives and learning during this time. We found that our students showed strong evidence of deep engagement with the subject and its learning activities and assessments. Through participation, the students showed high-level comprehension and produced relevant and authentic work. The context resulted in learning and teaching that was necessarily personal and allowed students to show their knowledge of life narrative through an engagement with theory and personal practice.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages16
JournalLife Writing
Early online date2 Mar 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2 Mar 2022

Keywords

  • biography
  • Covid-19
  • material objects
  • online learning
  • student engagement
  • YouTube

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