Better late than never, eh? I'm Chad, and I'm finishing up my masters this year in rhetoric, writing, and culture at Oregon State University. The term has been filled with too many internships and PhD applications (I'm sure more of that to follow later), so I hope you forgive me the lateness of my introduction.
I'm hoping that I can contribute to HASTAC this year by sharing my work in writing with disabilities, technology, and identity. I've been studying in the area for my thesis and have been particularly struck with the stakes and stakeholders that all come into play in the area. Disability is a fiery topic in societies and educational systems with many impassioned voices all jockeying for change, and I have been trying to think about how these changes affect our classrooms and students in both helpful and harmful ways.
For example, a clear result of Disability Rights has been the mandated need for accommodation in our classrooms, though this accommodation is usually added to our classes as an afterthought. A course's curriculum is set, then we try our best to fit our course objectives to the differing bodies that enter our classroom. This is usually the collaborative effort of a disability services branch of the university, ourselves, and our student(s); however, more and more technology is being implemented into this mix as well. I am interested, then, in exploring these technologies as students identify with them (and, by extension, their abilities) in our classrooms.
But beyond this, I am really looking forward to making connections with others working in this and different fields. It can often become too easy to stay secluded in the garden-level office I have little under a year remaining to call home, thinking very specifically about my work. I am really looking forward to expanding my own interests and diversify my limited understanding of these topics.
Here's to a great year! And, Happy Halloween!