Book cover for Learning on Location: Place-Based Approaches for Diverse Learners in Higher Education by Ashley J. Holmes. Series on Engaged Learning and Teaching
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ISBN: 9781642674217

November 2023

Chapter 3 begins by featuring a “writing on location” assignment that asks students to visit and write in a self-selected location as a source of inspiration and invention. The chapter offers one version of the assignment that asks students to write on a mobile device as a way of checking-in (rather than checking-out) from the world around us. Chapter 3 draws on a study of learning on location at Georgia State University, sharing examples of students’ place-based mobile writing and reflections from surveys. There is also one section featuring a student who takes a low-tech approach to the assignment. The chapter makes the case for writing as a central feature of location-based learning, arguing for the value of writing to disciplinary learning and demonstrating how connections among place, writing, and technology can prove fruitful and engaging for student learners.

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Discussion Questions

  1. How might the “Write on Location” activity work as a learning on location assignment within your course, program, or initiative? Are there modifications you would make?
  2. Writing-intensive courses have been identified as a high-impact practice. How might you use writing on location to enhance the way you assign and teach writing through place-based learning?
  3. Considering your institution’s student demographics, what possible challenges do you anticipate in terms of student access to mobile devices or Wi-Fi signals for a writing on location assignment? What resources are on your campus that might help address these challenges?
  4. Chapter 3 features students’ writing on location assignments that were composed on mobile devices, as well as examples of April’s “old school” low-tech version of the assignment. Given your course learning goals or program outcomes, is it preferrable for students to compose on mobile devices, handwrite in a journal, or use some alternative format to complete their writing on location?