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A Sequence on Sequencing: How? (Part III)

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This blog was originally posted on March 25th, 2015.

There is one more approach to sequencing you can use.  I don’t tend to use because, well, I think you’ll see…

We’ve included nine sequences in Emerging, many with options built in for alternate readings and assignments.  So a third method of making your “own” sequence is to modify one of the sequences that’s in Emerging.(And I don’t use this method because it’s not really modifying when I wrote the sequence in the first place [g].)

This might be a particularly good option if you just want to try this approach to teaching or if you’re getting your feet wet with sequencing.  We’ve already figured out what readings work together, which themes emerge from them, and what kind of work students might be able to do.  In turn, you can tweak individual assignments or the whole sequence based on your experience with teaching and your understanding of your students.

There’s a bonus to this method.  You cut down, I suspect, on plagiarism.  I imagine there are many papers floating around out there on the Interwebs that respond to the standard sequences.  Changing just a few aspects of the sequence encourages students to work without that virtual help.

Even if you don’t use or modify one of the existing sequences, I think they can still be useful in terms of inspiration and modeling.  Reading through them might give you ideas about sequences of your own.  Seeing how we’ve fit them together offers a useful model for how to sequence your own assignments.

About the Author
Barclay Barrios is an Associate Professor of English and Director of Writing Programs at Florida Atlantic University, where he teaches freshman composition and graduate courses in composition methodology and theory, rhetorics of the world wide web, and composing digital identities. He was Director of Instructional Technology at Rutgers University and currently serves on the board of Pedagogy. Barrios is a frequent presenter at professional conferences, and the author of Emerging.