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Research Question:

Our research question had three components:

  • What is the effect of teaching the production of online texts?
  • What is the effect of teaching the analysis of digital literacies?
  • How do students assess the effect of studying self-sponsored digital literacies?

Method: Our methodology was a qualitative study using ethnographic techniques, or more specifically, ethnographic writing research. Wendy Bishop explains this research methodology (Bishop, 1999).While ethnography is a phenomenological method of participating in a culture and giving an account of it as experienced by native members, ethnographic writing research is a less intensive study of the literacy practices of particular groups, often but not necessarily associated with teacher-research. In order to examine the interface between and among personal, public, and academic writing, our research documents how students take up these questions in an upper-level writing studies course. Therefore, we used the regular curriculum of English 301: the writing students did both online and in print, such as public blogs on the internet; the course Blackboard site; the mid-term paper; class discussion; and a survey after the work was completed.