EDUC 259S: Student Activism, Storytelling and Community Change


Readers requirements: Experience with student activism, storytelling and/or community change.

FYI: Professor may opt to use a pool of her own readers for this course, so if you pick this course as one of your choices to work with, please know the number of volunteers needed  from the Duke Reader pool for this course may be small, if at all, so please be sure to make a second and third pick, if possible, in addition to this one. Thank you!


  1. Course Information
  2. Schedule
  3. Giving Feedback

Course Information:

Instructor: Prof. Jennifer Ahern-Dodson

The course will include an examination of personal narrative in U.S. student activism across multiple media and genres. Students will investigate the ways in which personal narratives and storytelling advocate for social justice and reform, the ethics and practice of crafting, circulating, and using personal narratives in student-led movements, and the university’s role in advancing student activism as a form of civic engagement.

Student Writing Assignment:

What are students writing?

For whom?

Where would such writing typically be found?

Why would someone usually read it?


Schedule:

-To be determined-


Giving Feedback (general information that will apply to most courses):

Giving feedback is the activity around which the entire project is designed. You may have considerable professional experience giving feedback on writing — whether to colleagues, employees, or other contexts — or perhaps this is an fairly novel experience. Given the aims and nature of the Reader Project, we are hoping that our volunteers engage with student writing in a particular way–one that is quite different from what is conventionally done in other contexts.

The primary aim of the project is to help students really understand what it means to write for readers, rather than as a school assignment. Think about the following when you give feedback, whether in writing or in real time:

  • Respond as a reader rather than as an editor. (They can get basic editorial help from others.) Focus on sharing your reactions to the draft as a user of such writing. What are you thinking as you read? More