another blegging question, part two: possible readings and assignments for an introduction to doctoral studies course?

Thanks to everyone who responded on- or offline to my last blegging question about teaching an Introduction to Doctoral Studies course for the first time.

The suggestions I’ve received here and elsewhere focus on providing good, pragmatic advice on issues like presentations, publishing, job market, and so forth.  There were quite a few suggestions to introduce students explicitly to academic genres of writing (lit review, book review, seminar paper, article, etc.) so that students understand the expectations surrounding these forms.  I also received a number of suggestions that students would appreciate at least a brief refresher in using the library and its resources for grad-level assignments.

Now here’s a follow-up question, for any of you willing to share what helped or would have helped, in this phase of your studies.

Would you have any suggestions, first of all, for readings about questions like research, specialization, academic culture, the future of the humanities, or the job market? These would need to be accessible and current. Since the course will have a mixture of literary studies people, rhet/comp folks, and creative writers, I don’t want to hammer them with something maximally alienating, the way my instructors did in my first-year classes.

Secondly, what would your recommendations be for essays or assignments devoted to key academic genres of writing? All comments or suggestions gratefully accepted.

Thanks again,


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2 responses to “another blegging question, part two: possible readings and assignments for an introduction to doctoral studies course?

  1. kcentrelli

    I would think having students read the Chronicle or Inside Higher Ed would be helpful in regards to current perceptions of the academic community (and could be excellent prompts to which they may respond). Inside Higher Ed also has a lot of ‘blogs’ that could interest the various types of students you will have (even Mama PhD! For moms in academia!).

  2. Dave Mazella

    I’ll be using a course-blog myself, and so there will be a certain amount of topical reading (I’ll ask them to look at current discussions of certain hot topics), along with blogging responses. This seems the best way to get current on topical issues in higher ed.