Friday, August 26, 2005

The Autumn Term Has Begun

The students have arrived and a new term has begun. Funny how crowded the university suddenly feels. The A-level students (the beginners) had a diagnostic vocabulary-grammar/syntax test today and it is going to be interesting to see what this group will be like.

My own two courses start next week. A teacher trainee course begins on Tuesday focussing on language and learning, and I teach this course for the first time. The other one is the "Text, Media, and Culture" course, which I'm teaching for the third time, and this time I will share it with a colleague of mine, Erik.

Another new element will be added to the, by now, well-known mix of novels, short stories, movies and ads: a computer game. At our first meeting on Thursday evening, the class will create avatars and try out Rebel Dawn and interpret and analyze this web-based computer game as "text". The students are supposed to focus on the same things they would focus on in any other text type: the values or world view(s) that can be found in the text. By doing this, the students will hopefully provide "material" for my own paper for the League of Worlds conference on how comparative lit students interpret computer games. (Yes, my paper was accepted!) It is always an advantage if what you do has more than one purpose... =)

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