Inside the classroom

A day in the life

Inside the classroom


I’m trying to teach people skills that can be used in the 'real world' and the academic world. I try to teach people by learning through experience and helping them acquire some hands-on skills as well as theory.

Improve your English with ENG 3113, Writing Practice


Dr. Lyn Bennett started teaching Writing Practice to fill a gap. No one had focused a course entirely on developing teaching, writing and editing skills for English students before. In ENG 3113, Dr. Bennett – who specializes in rhetoric and literary criticism – works on all these.

In class, students do an intensive study of grammar and rhetoric. Outside class, they provide tutoring services to first-year students. They also copy edit scholarly articles scheduled for publication in Compendium Two, an academic journal published online through Dalhousie's Electronic Text Centre.

“Almost all the students who have taken that class have told me that their grades go up because they are writing better,” she says proudly.

Working on papers written by people who hold doctorates closes the gap between undergraduates and faculty, and increases their confidence, she says.

“Students are intimidated at first, then they discover very quickly that they can do a lot and they can help the writers improve their writing a lot.”

Leslie Gallagher, a Combined Honours student in English and Creative Writing, is a believer in this course. It empowered her in her roles as Editor-in-Chief of Verso: An Undergraduate Journal of Literary Criticism, a copyeditor for the creative-writing journal Fathom and assistant Arts and Culture editor with Dalhousie’s student newspaper, The Gazette.

“I’ve been interested in publishing for years, but it was only after Dr. Bennett’s course in Writing Practice that I truly became capable and confident in my abilities as an editor. The weekly tutoring and hands-on copyediting experience was immediately applicable to the rest of my degree.”