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Alum Comment/Suggestion Area

npalacios's picture
Please post any and all thoughts about your experience as an alum (or, undergrads--your experiences with alums!) in this course. Suggestions or general comments about the course are more than just welcomed...they are needed!
marybellefrey's picture

request for alum reactions, suggestions

I really have no suggestions for improvements or changes --- the education of adults is not my forte.  My reactions are so very personal that I have posted them in my blog.  I can't believe they would have been part of Anne Dalke's behavioral objectives for the course!!  For me participation in the course has been wonderful, amazing, immense, exciting, challenging, thought-provoking, life-changing, clarifying, on and on.  My thanks to everyone who has made it possible and to everyone who has participated. 
Anne Dalke's picture

challenging thinking

I have no "behavioral objectives" for any of my courses; what I'm aiming for, most generally, is to get folks to think--and to leave unable NOT to do so. More on this recently @ another nearby site: see expecting to be scared.


Liz Morris's picture

Books available for ENGL 293

We have the books available for ENGL 293. We don’t have them available on line but can take an order over the phone, by email or by fax. I don’t think it is a good idea to email credit card numbers but you can send an email with what books you need and shipping instructions and follow it with a phone call or fax with the credit card information. We use UPS shipping and the price is $6.00 for shipping. The books I have available with prices are listed below.
ENGL 293
TRUONG BOOK OF SALT 03 PB HM MARINER BK 978-0-618-44688-9 $13.00
WOOLF THREE GUINEAS 66 PB HBC TRADE HARVEST 978-0-15-690177-2 $ 12.00

Liz Morris
Book Buyer
Bryn Mawr College Bookshop
610 526 5322 Phone
610 527 2059 Fax

gail's picture

Ordering books for Part II

Of course, my library does not have most of the readings...

Can alums order them from the bookstore?  How does one go about this?

gail's picture

Help in posting photos, links please

Thank you for allowing us to listen to the class discussion.  It was indeed generous feminism.  I wanted to return the risk taking.  I speak in a metal voice, so I created a metal sculpture. 

 I created a posting version which included photos in MSword, but when I went to copy/paste- only the text appeared.  Images are on my hard drive.  Do I have to upload them separately? I would also like to share a live link to my website.

I know Anne has done all these things in her archive.  Could you help me .

Thank you,


npalacios's picture

Ahhh sorry to be responding

Ahhh sorry to be responding to this so has been quite hectic and hasn't left much time for looking at the forum. I did get to see your sculptures however which I thought were really great. I'm glad to see that other voices (esp. metal ones....maybe more sculptures in the future?) are being intertwined here. Keep the comments coming!


PS - Since you decided to be generous enough to show your picture, I figured I would do the same as well (esp. since you probably don't hear my voice in the recording).  

gail's picture

great portrait!

Dear Nydia,

I have been listening to your class discussions.  Please thank everyone.

Great portrait and.....

Just for my tech info.. How did you get such great sky without your face being backlite into complete darkness.  Is this real or photoshop?



npalacios's picture

Hey Gail, The photo

Hey Gail,

The photo isn't photoshopped at all...I'm not sure how it came out so well, maybe the general May Day festivities (this was taken last May Day) contributed to it. I'll be sure to pass on the message to the rest of the class!



gail's picture


I am most excited about the possibility of a podcast of class.

On our part, just so the alums are not some faceless listeners which may be intimidating, would it be helpful to post a photo and perhaps a link to our website ( if we have one)

The link to the papers is great. I am enjoying the two I have read.  Please thank you all for opening up this way.

 Navigation is still not intuitive for me. I often ( for example to read paper #1) go back to the e-mail and link. And.... I guess for us sloooow learners, you have to  keep stressing that the long in is always at the bottom of the page.

Thank you for your willingness to change .


gail's picture

Thanks and need more help, please

Thank you for your attention and response to my "thread" idea/ conversation exchange. As npalacios asked, is there other ways to open dialogue? I guess this is the way I get excited and process information and... grow.

Anne's links and updates to the class notes are most most helpful.  I read them over time as my guide and idea direction. 


I need more help.  How do I access another's blog?  How do I link a blog to the forum? Did the class decide to allow us to read their papers and respond?  It would be a privilege.

Navigation of the site is not my strong point.




Ann Dixon's picture

blogs, papers and forums

You're just one step ahead of me, so I'll try and run and catch up!

The class is welcoming alums to read their papers online, and after 5pm Friday, they will be available at:


The first column on that page lists the student's username, and it links to their blog.

The second column on that page lists the title of the student's paper, and links directly to it.

If you yourself start a blog (you go, girl!), and want to reference it in a forum posting, you create your 
blog entry and post it (more about this here in another thread), and then you copy and paste the address (URL) 
into your forum posting that's referencing it. You then drag your cursor over the whole address to "select" 
it, and click on the button that looks like a link in a chain link fence. Paste the address into the first entry 
blank that says Link URL, and  click on Insert. Then continue on with your forum posting. If that's too complicated, you can just paste the address into your forum posting. All the rest of these instructions
are to make the address work as a link.


npalacios's picture

Thanks for pointing out

Thanks for pointing out that there was a lack of dialogue in the first place!

Ann Dixon, Prof. Dalke, and I are working collaboratively to try and figure out other ways to get conversation going for alums (since you can't come to class) and we have been throwing a few ideas together. Having class notes online is one of the ways (and we're glad that it's working for you). Another idea is having podcasts of the lecture (where you would also hear student input) online and I believe that the today's class was the first to be recorded. I think that would be a really good addition to the class notes. Another is perhaps having a webchat between alums (and undergrads if they want to join in) about the readings...which in a way would simulate going to class and discussing readings. Do you have any ideas?? We'd really love to hear them.

As far as the tech stuff goes, I emailed Ann and I'm sure that she'll be able to send you better directions about blog stuff than I could. Also, you are able to read their papers and respond (along with technically the world).

Hope this helps,


Gail (via Anne)'s picture

explorations and narratives

(from the week 3 forum:)

I appreciate your sharing this experience on-line for alums in addition to class. This is important to me.
I do use your class notes ( and appreciate the modifications/additions). They give me a sense of interaction.
Perhaps it is my failing, but I do not get the sense of a "thread" or sharing of thought. As I read the posting of students/alums, each seems to be a brief independent essay. Perhaps, as this , you could start us out....or....the assignment each week would be to "post one" and "respond to a posting" of the prior week or current week.

Thank you for leading us in developing our narratives.

npalacios's picture

threading as conversation? and other things...

I personally think that forums should be places of conversation/dialogue more than just spaces to post essays that work independently of each other. That isn't to say that people should not feel free to post something radically different than what other people have said but a connecting thread can be nice, especially if a forum is meant to stimulate discussion outside of class. 

 Do you have any suggestions for other ways in which to open up dialogue among alums? Would a web chat be more helpful in a "sharing of thought"?


Anne Dalke's picture


I'm interested in your suggestion that you're missing a "thread' in these postings, Gail. One reason I so enjoy these on-line forums is that they are NOT threaded, and a-synchronous: when I post, I'm free not to respond to others (although of course I can chose to, as I am chosing now to respond to you...).

Instead, I can just think aloud in whatever direction I want to go, without worrying (as a talker like me always worries) about taking up too much airspace (it feels "airier" here, unlike in a class, where I'm always watching the clock, and wanting to make sure everyone gets a turn to contribute).

How well this is working for alums like you who don't have the opportunity to come into class twice a week to "get" the threading, the pulling together, is of course part of what this experiment is about. As you note, I have been trying to provide those links in the archives for our discussions, where I do highlight the linkages I see among the postings, but maybe we need to fiddle a little more with this system we're building...I'll try a more directed prompt this week, and see what happens...

Ann Dixon's picture

encouraging "unfinished" thoughts

One thing about the forums that I may never get used to is that they really are meant to be a place where you can "think out loud:" some unfinished thoughts/ writing. I've seen comments that are just one-liners spark a whole discussion for other people. You never know what will be useful to other people's thinking. In my experience, though, I feel a lot of pressure to write something intelligent and "finished," and don't know how to encourage myself, much less others, to just write unfinished thoughts and not to worry so much about it being a finished product. If you have thoughts about this, I would be interested in hearing them.


Ann, BMC '83

marybellefrey's picture

early reactions

The reading is sending me into another world.  Obviously the right texts at the right time.

The students' comments ditto.  That was what I was looking for --- that is, my conscious mind was looking for.  In particular the few references to race have put me to thinking about my own 'races', and then about class.  I am not so sure this is the proper forum for those topics, but now that I am caught up with the reading I may take up the challenge.

npalacios's picture

Don't worry if this is the

Don't worry if this is the "proper" forum or not...I for one (even though I didn't assign the readings of course!) am glad that you're finding it intriguing. I know that many of my classes have readings that don't correspond to my life at all and how frustrating it is to have to read them anyway. Also, I was wondering what you meant by 'races'?