Contextual Issues and Lessons Learned in Teaching, Advising, and Mentoring the Undergraduate Honors Student in Communication
Table Of Contents
- About the Author
- About the Book
- This eBook can be cited
- List of Tables and Figures
- 1. Introduction to Honors Communication: Contextual Issues and Lessons Learned in Teaching, Advising, and Mentoring the Undergraduate Honors Student in Communication
- Section I Contextual Issues for Teaching and Learning in Honors Communication Courses
- 2. Honors and Communication in Conversation
- 3. Administering Honors: Understanding Multiple Perspectives to Advocate for Honors Education
- Section II Teaching Commonly Offered Honors Communication Courses: Practical Resources and Lessons Learned
- 4. Teaching Honors Public Speaking
- 5. Teaching Honors Rhetoric and Communication
- 6. Teaching Honors Argumentation and Debate
- 7. Teaching Honors Interpersonal Communication
- 8. Teaching Honors Small Group and Team Communication
- 9. Teaching Honors Family Communication
- 10. Teaching the Capstone Course
- Section III Advising and Mentoring Honors Communication Students
- 11. Creating a Culture of Undergraduate Scholarship
- 12. Directed Research Projects
- 13. Mentoring for Academic and Professional Success
- 14. Reflections and Recommendations: The Future of Honors Communication Pedagogy
- Author Biographies
Tables and Figures
Table 4.1: The Public Speaking Syllabus: Course Components of a Non-Honors Section vs. Honors Section
Table 6.1: The Argumentation and Debate Syllabus: Course Components of a Non-Honors Section vs. Honors Section
Table 7.1: Teaching Honors Interpersonal Communication: Course Components of a Non-Honors Section vs. Honors Section
Table 12.1: Weekly Data Analysis Meetings
Figure 12.1: Initial Meeting Questions
This book is the fruit of a conversation between the editors of this volume, Jennifer A. H. Becker and Caroline S. Parsons, at a conference in Huntsville, Alabama. Escaping the July heat, we sat in the lobby as Jennifer described her newly-developed honors interpersonal communication course and Caroline nibbled on grapes. Both of us have extensive experience and deep interest in teaching various honors communication courses, and Caroline has served as a Lambda Pi Eta advisor since 1998. Our conversation shifted as we explored the confluence between honors pedagogy and communication pedagogy in our own applications and in the discipline more broadly. We also discussed the tremendous need for current and comprehensive literature on working with honors communication students in various capacities. The grapes were gone but our enterprise had just begun. Taking matters into our own hands, we decided a book was needed and thus began our efforts on Honors Communication: Contextual Issues and Lessons Learned in Teaching, Advising, and Mentoring the Undergraduate Honors Student in Communication.
From its inception, our goals for this edited volume have been to articulate and advance the practice and scholarship of honors communication pedagogy, advising, and mentoring. To achieve this considerable undertaking, we carefully curated chapters from leading scholars, administrators, and advisors of honors communication students and societies. We asked authors to draw upon their extensive experience and extant research and theory. As a result of our combined efforts, this book situates the honors communication experience within the broader contexts of honors education and the communication discipline. The reader will benefit from systematic discussion of administrative ←xi | xii→perspectives, the teaching of seven different honors communication courses, and directing research, advising, and mentoring of honors communication students. In the words of Richard Badenhausen (2019), current president of the National Collegiate Honors Council, honors faculty and administrators are optimists who care deeply about the learning environment and are a charitable bunch who like to get things done. With this sense of optimism in mind, this book provides practical recommendations that pave the way for a future of limitless possibilities in honors communication pedagogy.
Honors Communication: Contextual Issues and Lessons Learned in Teaching, Advising, and Mentoring the Undergraduate Honors Student in Communication addresses a range of honors communication experiences, and as such can be useful for instructors, graduate students, course directors, administrators, and researchers—prospective, new, and seasoned alike. Instructors and advisors will harvest inspiration for their own honors communication courses, societies, and individual students. Additionally, this edited volume serves as a handbook for faculty who teach communication education and instructional communication courses and their graduate students, course directors who offer honors sections of multi-sectioned courses, and administrators who wish to add honors communication courses to their curricula. Researchers and scholars of communication pedagogy, communication education, instructional communication, and honors education will also benefit from this book; it serves as a beacon call to all scholars to contribute to the body of knowledge in the area of honors communication pedagogy.
Overview of the Book
The goal of honors communication pedagogy is to identify practices that result in effective classroom instruction, gains in student learning, and the establishment of a supportive learning environment in the honors communication curriculum. This book sheds light on the unique pedagogical approaches of teaching and learning in honors communication courses. In the introductory chapter entitled “Introduction to Honors Communication: Contextual Issues and Lessons Learned in Teaching, Advising, and Mentoring the Undergraduate Honors Student in Communication,” Jennifer A. H. Becker and Caroline S. Parsons define honors communication pedagogy and explain the ways in which teaching honors communication courses compares and contrasts with teaching non-honors communication courses. In laying a foundation for the book, the authors describe the evolution of honors pedagogy, the unique characteristics of honors students and of honors programs, and the current challenges and issues in honors pedagogy.
←xii | xiii→Section one describes contextual issues for teaching and learning in honors communication courses. In the second chapter entitled “Honors and Communication in Conversation,” Robert Sullivan describes the key principles and features of honors education by comparing the differing ways in which smaller liberal arts colleges approach honors education compared with large public universities.
In the third chapter entitled “Administering Honors: Understanding Multiple Perspectives to Advocate for Honors Education” Dacia Charlesworth and Bill McKinney describe the various perspectives embedded in administering an honors program or college. The purpose of the chapter was to offer an overview of the current state of higher education, explain the significance of honors education, and describe the challenges and opportunities in administering honors programs. Between both authors, they have served in the roles of university president, provost/vice chancellor of academic affairs, dean, chairperson, honors program director, honors faculty, and honors thesis advisor at small and mid-size public and private universities in the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, and South. As such, they are well versed in crafting persuasive arguments for several audiences related to creating, supporting, and expanding honors education.
Section two describes the lessons learned and best practices for teaching commonly offered honors communication courses. The authors of chapters in section two summarized their own experiences with teaching honors communication courses and provided resources for students and faculty interested in teaching students of honors communication. In chapter four, “Teaching Honors Public Speaking,” Caroline S. Parsons prepares instructors who already teach or wish to teach honors public speaking. By comparing and contrasting how teaching honors public speaking is different from teaching the non-honors version of the course, she reviews the unique characteristics of honors public speaking students, along with the necessary adjustments in teaching and learning strategies, in the syllabus, and in grading and assessment. The chapter contains detailed information about course objectives, descriptions of assignments, grading rubrics, assessment and student learning outcomes, and a list of readings and texts. In chapter five entitled “Teaching Honors Rhetoric and Communication,” Carol Thompson and April Chatham-Carpenter describe the honors rhetoric and communication course(s), reviewing the educational philosophy and rationale that guides the instructors, along with sample assignments and texts required in the course. Honors Rhetoric and Communication emphasizes theory from the fields of rhetoric and communication, focusing broadly on interpersonal and ethical communication in readings, assignments, and class discussions. Geared to ←xiii | xiv→develop thoughtful, competent, and ethical communicators, the course promotes collaborative discussions, presentations, role plays, experiential activities, and writing. The chapter ends with a review of lessons learned from extricating communication themes from the texts and assignments for the honors student population.
In chapter six, “Teaching Honors Argumentation and Debate,” Caroline S. Parsons compares and contrasts how teaching honors argumentation and debate is different from teaching the non-honors version of the course. She overviewed speech and debate pedagogy, honors speech and debate pedagogy, adjustments in teaching and learning strategies in the honors course in argumentation, and adjustments in the honors argumentation and debate syllabus. The chapter contains information about course objectives, descriptions of assignments, grading rubrics, assessment and student learning outcomes, and a list of readings and texts. A sample syllabus is included. In chapter seven entitled “Teaching Honors Interpersonal Communication,” Jennifer A. H. Becker looks at the fertile union between honors and interpersonal communication pedagogies, with a close examination (and admitted admiration) of its offspring: the honors course in interpersonal communication. Like its conceptual relatives, the honors interpersonal communication course promotes engaged, active learning and meaningful intellectual, personal, and relational growth.
In chapter eight, “Teaching Honors Small Group and Team Communication,” Colleen Mestayer asks such important questions as “what is small group communication?,” “what is teamwork?,” “who is the honors student in an honors teamwork class?,” and “do honors students make good leaders?” She described how to teach an effective teamwork class and the challenges of teaching teamwork to honors students. In chapter nine, entitled “Teaching Honors Family Communication,” Tiffany R. Wang describes how to blend honors and communication pedagogies to promote engaged, active learning and foster meaningful growth in the honors family communication course. By showcasing a very helpful sample syllabus, she overviewed family communication pedagogy, honors family communication pedagogy, adjustments in teaching and learning strategies, and adjustments in the honors family communication syllabus. In chapter ten, “Teaching the Capstone Course,” Caroline S. Parsons provides a sample syllabus to help instructors teach the senior thesis or capstone seminar course. This chapter provides structure for a course that is designed to engage honors students in an independent research project, along with the completion of a professional portfolio. Because the capstone course satisfies several desired student learning outcomes, students are asked to reflect about their communication competency and to provide ←xiv | xv→evidence (e.g. work products) that showcase their proficiency in key areas of communication competency. As such, this chapter devotes attention to the capstone course as a site for the collection of valuable assessment data (e.g. e-portfolio).
Section three focuses on advising and mentoring honors communication students. The authors of these chapters describe their experiences with honors independent research projects, academic advising, and Lambda Pi Eta honor society advising and provided resources for students and faculty interested in advising honors communication students. In the eleventh chapter entitled “Creating a Culture of Undergraduate Scholarship,” Jason B. Munsell describes a survey of communication course (200-level) and a senior capstone course (400-level) that helps students to navigate the process of setting up and executing a communication research project acceptable for presentation at an undergraduate honors conference.
In the twelfth chapter, entitled “Directed Research Projects,” Michelle T. Violanti describes how to guide students through all phases of an academic research project, such as: identifying a suitable research topic/question, locating literature that illuminates the research question, preparing a method for data collection, obtaining research permission, collecting and analyzing data, summarizing the findings and conclusions, and locating outlets for the research findings, such as undergraduate communication conferences where students can submit and present their work. In the thirteenth chapter of the book entitled “Mentoring for Academic and Professional Success,” Laura E. Willis and Stephanie Ambrosio describe how to promote academic and professional readiness in preparing students for graduate school and their job search and career goals. The chapter also addresses helping faculty to give academic feedback and helping students to interpret and respond to academic feedback. This chapter is an excellent resource for faculty, advisors, and administrators who deliver academic feedback to undergraduate students, honors students, and members of Lambda Pi Eta honor society.
In the fourteenth and final chapter entitled “Reflections and Recommendations: The Future of Honors Communication Pedagogy,” Caroline S. Parsons reviews the chapters in this book and the definition of honors communication pedagogy as it relates to adjusting teaching and learning strategies in the honors communication classroom. She also explains some practical ways to get involved in honors communication pedagogy through mentoring, teaching, and advising students and becoming an advocate for honors communication pedagogy in the future.
Many thanks go to Dr. Beth Bennett, Senior Associate Dean in the College of Communication and Information Sciences, along with our colleagues in the Department of Communication Studies at The University of Alabama. Words cannot express how much their encouragement and support meant to us while completing this book.
We’d also like to thank our research assistant Khadiza Tul Jannat, a Ph.D. student in the College of Communication and Information Sciences at The University of Alabama.
Finally, we appreciate the editorial genius and support of Erika Hendrix, Acquisitions Editor and our point person at Peter Lang Publishing. Erika’s clear and informative communication made the onerous task of editing this volume more manageable and enjoyable.
1. Introduction to Honors Communication: Contextual Issues and Lessons Learned in Teaching, Advising, and Mentoring the Undergraduate Honors Student in Communication
“Having been a faculty member for almost 40 years, I have many wonderful memories of campus life. My happiest moments, though, have been the semesters when I was engaged in the honors program. The students are uniformly first-rate: smart, engaged in student and community activities, active in classroom discussions, and always punctual in the completion of assignments with a high level of excellence. Honors students are amenable to experiences beyond the classroom, whether discussions of current events over coffee, longer conversations over lunch, or coming to my place for a home cooked meal (as my honors classes always do). The size of the class–always less than 20–makes it possible as well to have rich dialogues among the class members and the instructor, which is more difficult in our typically larger classes.”—Dr. David Mustard, instructor of honors courses (Honors testimonials, 2016).
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- ISBN (MOBI)
- ISBN (Hardcover)
- Publication date
- 2020 (December)
- New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Oxford, Wien, 2020. XVIII, 300 pp., 2 b/w ill., 4 tables.