This is another in a series of interviews with staff, faculty, administrators and students across campus promoting the goals of EKU’s Quality Enhancement Plan. The current QEP, Read with Purpose, calls for Eastern to develop critical readers through the use of metacognitive strategies. Building on the past QEP, which focused on developing critical and creative thinkers, this effort represents the University’s commitment to institutional improvement, and provides a long-term focus for faculty and staff professional development and student learning.
This installment in the QEP Spotlight series features student Kennedy Morin.
Q: In what ways have you been involved with the EKU QEP, Read with Purpose?
A: I am the course-embedded consultant coordinator at the Noel Studio for Academic Creativity. The QEP, Read with Purpose, has been an integral part of the work I do with developmental English students in 101R and 102R classrooms. As a duel-degree student in psychology and child and family studies, I have also used the resources provided by the QEP in my own learning.
Q: What impact is the QEP having on your own learning?
A: I have always viewed my position at the Noel Studio as a learning opportunity. Both the professional development and my time with students in and out of the classroom have shaped my learning. Since the implementation of the QEP there has been more talk among professors, consultants and students about what strategies they use to interact with text. My professors, Dr. Sara Incera and Dr. Steffen Wilson, have worked critical reading into their curriculum and have encouraged me to not just read the text but apply the knowledge from the text in ways that I find useful. I struggle with dyslexia, so I have had to adapt some reading strategies presented to me to fit my needs. The biggest outcome of the QEP has been my acceptance of my need to take more time to read through the textbook and articles that I find. Even though it takes me longer to read the text, I feel like the reading strategies (taking notes on the reading, annotating, connecting the text and teaching the text to those that I can wrangle into listening to me) have allowed me to get more out of the text than some of my peers. I now view critical reading as the first step to complete understanding, learning and effective communication.
Q: In what ways has QEP professional development impacted your work with students in the Noel Studio?
A: I have attended several of Dr. Lisa Bosley’s critical reading workshops as a part of my professional development at the Studio. Through these workshops I have learned different critical reading strategies and how to encourage my students to implement these strategies as a part of their own reading process. Before the QEP began, most of my consultations with students focused on revising their writing. While I still help students revise their writing, I find myself repeatedly returning to the reading comprehension side of communication. After implementing the resources and knowledge provided by the QEP, it is more common to see me reading with a student or asking them questions about the text instead of running through grammar during our consultation. Not only have I worked more with critical reading in consultations, but I have also brought those skills into the classroom. I have taught several mini-lessons in ENG 101R and ENG 102R, classes that provide students with critical reading strategies and allow students time to hone their own critical reading practices.
Q: In what ways do you see the QEP supporting student learning at EKU?
A: The QEP offers vital resources for EKU students. I am very excited to know that all the students attending EKU will receive support in their reading and understanding from faculty across disciplines. Reading and writing are not seen as an English-major-thing anymore. The QEP is spreading the message that with the support of faculty, learning ultimately begins and ends with learners. The Read with Purpose QEP encourages students to take learning into their own hands, while providing resources, strategies and opportunities for students to do so.