INFORMATION ABOUT YOUR PRESENTATION
The total abstract including title, authors, affiliations, faculty mentors, text and acknowledgments should be typed with a 10 point Arial font.
An Innovative Approach Using Writing to Improve Learning in Biology. Mohamed Lakrim, Theodore Markus, Carol Biermann. Kingsborough Community College, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11235
In an attempt to significantly improve the passing rate on the College Preparatory Exam (CPE) at the City University of New York (CUNY) and to simultaneously reinforce and improve reading, writing and critical thinking skills; faculty have initiated the Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) initiative. The CPE exam is administered to all CUNY students after having reached the 45 credit level. The 3-hour examination is designed to assess reading, writing and analytical; skills. Passing the exam is a requirement to graduate from a CUNY Community College as well as to be able to continue at a Senior College at CUNY.
Recognizing that for many students, the sole opportunity to develop and improve these skills is often limited to freshmen English courses, the University has implemented the WAC initiative. This initiative encourages all disciplines to increase the writing components in their course offerings. Writing is to be used as a tool for increasing comprehension and learning.
Our presentation will focus on the manner in which the biology courses at Kingsborough Community College (KCC) have been modified to utilize writing and to emphasize how these writing assignments are designed to increase understanding of biological concepts. Through these innovative writing assignments, students obtain numerous benefits. Students are taught to focus on understanding of the course material and to deemphasize rote memorization.
Although initially students were apprehensive, they came to appreciate and enjoy the writing assignments and were able to perceive the connection between writing and learning.