English 103 - Class Visit

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Classroom Visitation Report


Instructor: Beth Ann Bryant-Richards

Course number and title:

English 103

Observer: Sarah Hallenbeck

Date of observation 11/2/17



1. Structure. Describe the topic, goals, and format of the class.

This class was devoted to developing familiarity with MLA style, practicing close reading and annotation, and engaging in a discussion of a text. Students worked individually, in small groups, and in a full-class discussion during class, with Beth Ann circulating through the room, moderating discussion, and lecturing briefly as needed.


2. Planning. Comment on the instructor’s planning, preparation, and course materials. Consider how the class meeting fits into the overall design of the course, based on the syllabus.


The class was perfectly planned and paced, and Beth Ann demonstrated an excellent blend of structure and responsiveness to the students in her class. The class was working on their research projects, and the MLA review fit into their efforts to incorporate their sources into their arguments. The reading—about suicide--functioned as a sort of break from the usual flow of the course, intended as a response to the stress students were feeling as the semester neared an end. It elicited a really good discussion that served that goal.


3. Delivery. Comment on the quality of instruction. Consider clarity, coherence, appropriateness, use of instructional resources, and instructor’s knowledge of the subject matter.


Beth Ann was effortless in her interactions with students: clear but also honest and personable. Her students clearly regard her as an expert and had an easy time staying engaged and asking her good questions during the MLA activity.


4. Response. Describe the level and effectiveness of interactions with students. Consider methods used to involve students in learning.


Students in this class appear to have formed a community in which members feel comfortable not only discussing texts, but tackling difficult and even personal topics related to those texts. They stay on task in small groups, and nearly every person contributed to the full-class discussion. Beth Ann uses names, encourages students to speak to each other as well as to her, and asks good questions to keep students engaged.


5. Summary. Provide general comments about this instructor’s approach to teaching. Comment on strengths or areas in need of improvement.


This was a impressive class! I’m sorry I walked in late, but I’m glad I had the opportunity to see this group in action. Beth Ann is clearly a talented and skilled teacher, with a good sense both of first-year students and of the subject matter of the course.


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