Cross-Cultural Exchange on Poetry: An Online Collaboration
Among Swedish and American Students, Spring 2004

 

Participating Classes and Colleges


Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden, is a research intensive university with a comprehensive coverage of engineering disciplines. The engineering students have a range of electives to choose from and the students in this exchange on poetry take the course "Fiction for Engineers." So, the students come from a variety of engineering disciplines and are all MSc students with at least one year of their programme completed. The seminar meets once a week and apart from discussing the set texts, it is also geared towards preparing the students for their term paper assignment. The poetry exchange will form a part of their journal assignment and can be used as a starter for their term papers. Although English is not the first langauge of these students, the course is conducted in English like many of the fourth year courses at Chalmers and some of the electives.

Tidewater Community College in Southeastern Virginia, USA, is a large four-campus commuter college, and the students in our exchange are taking a writing-intensive totally online class that "meets” several times a week on a Web discussion board where they write approximately 500 words of informal discussion on class topics. "English Composition II" is the second of a two-semester course in academic writing, a first-year general education requirement for students at most colleges and universities in the United States. The first semester focused on essays and short research papers. This second semester emphasizes reading and writing critically and includes an introduction to the literary genres of fiction, poetry, and drama as well as more advanced scholarly research and more sophisticated arguments. This international exchange will broaden our understanding of approaching literature from a variety of perspectives and reinforce our ability to explain and support our own views for diverse audiences.

Clemson University is a land-grant university in Clemson, South Carolina, USA, and the students in our exchange are pursuing a Masters of Arts degree in English. Our graduate seminar, entitled "Victorian Poetry," focuses on writers in nineteenth-century England, especially Matthew Arnold, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Robert Browning, and Alfred Tennyson. However, we are also interested in larger issues such as how and why people read poetry and how readers from different literary periods (or countries) might interpret poems differently. In addition to reading poetry and criticism, the students are writing poems themselves as well as writing critical analyses and other genres. This international online exchange is a key part of their portfolio and its accompanying reflective essay.


Cross-Cultural Exchange on Poetry: An Online Collaboration
Among Swedish and American Students, Spring 2004
for educational purposes only
Website developed 2004 by
D. Reiss and modified 8 March 2004 by D. Reiss