The syllabus serves as a formal document guiding our work together. Autonomy, mastery, and purpose -- Pink's three principles for intrinsic motivation -- are encouraged with many options for individual choice and commitment based on personal resonance, intellectual curiosity, and relevance.

LEAD and SERVE constitute the conceptual framework for all programs for
professional educators at NC State. They are the touchstones that assure that our
students graduate with the following:

LEAD: four forms of knowledge; general pedagogy, content-specific
pedagogical strategies, content or discipline knowledge as well as
knowledge of the context of education, including foundations, historical
perspectives and school settings.

SERVE: elements that show the range of skills and dispositions
developed in our candidates; scholarly, ethical, reflective, valuing diversity
and experienced in practical application of knowledge.

The Conceptual Framework may be found in its entirety at

Course Syllabus

ECI 521601 – Teaching Literature for Young Adults

Section 01
Summer Session 1, 2014
3 Credit Hours

Special Notes

There could be no more appropriate course for exploring new literacies and technologies than ECI 521: Learning Through Literature with Young Adults. We must learn how to learn in this new digital world that our students will inherit and shape. A major goal will be for all of us to expand our literacies, resources, tools, communities, and networks -- our personal learning environments -- so that this course opens up new possibilities for career- and lifelong-exploration. Toward this goal we will endeavor to create a community of practice, defined by Wenger-Trayner as a group of individuals who learn together about a common purpose or passion, within our class and connect with networks beyond that are dedicated to young adult literature and learning and teaching with new literacies and technologies. To accomplish this, ECI 521 has become an "open" course meaning there is an open invitation to anyone interested in joining us at no cost for no credit. This is a new model for professional development and it offers ECI 521 for-credit students the opportunity to learn with a greater diversity of teachers, librarians, publishers, authors -- anyone interested in the latest and greatest young adult literature and how we can learn through it with young adults.

Course Description

In ECI 521: Teaching Literature for Young Adults, we explore the realities of teen life, literature, literacy, and learning in the 21st century. We do this through a partnership with an award-winning teen book club and by learning to integrate new literacies and technologies to engage and inspire students and ourselves. Both preservice and inservice teachers and librarians will benefit from learning how to encourage multiple responses to literature, to think critically about contemporary issues in the teaching of literature for young adults, and to design literature-based projects that encourage interdisciplinary learning through literature.

Learning Outcomes

Standards-Based Outcomes:
An educator will demonstrate successful completion of this course by
Professional Self
Integrating learning, literacy, and literary theories to create learning experiences that engage young adults in learning about curriculum, social justice, critical literacy, and creativity through literature
Literate Self
modeling a fully and actively literate individual through transactions with literature for young adults and responses (both personal and critical) in multiple forms and media
Virtual Self
developing an effective online identity by learning to integrate new literacies and technologies into learning and teaching

Course Structure

The course design is based on principles of motivation described in Dan Pink's Drive (2009) and the work in personal learning environments and open education done by Stephen Downes (most recently in 2010). Pink (2009) explains that motivation depends on autonomy, mastery, and purpose -- "self-directed . . . devoted to becoming better and better at something that matters. And it connects that quest for excellence to a larger purpose" (pp. 80-81). Downes (2010) in the Personal Learning Environment/Network Knowledge open online course describes the need for diversity (in resources for learning), autonomy (ownership of the learning), connections (from within the course to communities of practice and networks beyond), and openness (no barriers) (retrieved on December 26 from

The course includes three basic projects – Reading the Latest and Greatest of Young Adult Literature (Individual book blogging and discussion), Trends and Issues in Learning Through Literature with Young Adults (weekly units of study led by groups), and the collaborative design of an Interdisciplinary, Literature-Based Project.

There is also ongoing Reflective Assessment with weekly critical self-reflection on contributions made to the course.

Each week we meet real-time (Thursdays, 7 to 8:30 pm ET) in Google Hangouts.

Formative and Summative Assessment

A Reflective Assessment Process is used.

The Reflective Assessment Process (RAP) has three components:

Contract Grading:
We are essentially a community of practice defined by Wenger-Trayner as a group of people with a common purpose or passion who join together to learn all they can about how to achieve that purpose or fulfill that passion. It seems most appropriate then that your grade depends on your contributions to the community.

You determine your grade for the course by fulfilling a contract that spells out clearly what's required. The advantage is that know your personal goals for the course and your commitments to other coursework, job, and family. This is particularly important during the summer sessions when the brief duration leads to double-timed intensity. You prioritize and contract accordingly for the grade that best matches your goals and commitments. There's no less respect for a B well-earned with course goals met and other commitments fulfilled in a balanced way that enables you to enjoy the course. I remember students who lament that they had to read way too fast to enjoy the books and that needn't happen. You know by graduate school that grades are for accountability but it's what you take from the course and how you use it that will get you the position you want or enable you to achieve the credibility and success you desire.

Here's how the contract grading will work:

You decide how much work you can best accomplish, and, if you complete that work on time and satisfactorily, you will receive the grade for which you contracted. All work is graded satisfactory or unsatisfactory. There are rubrics for each project that describe satisfactory work very clearly. Unsatisfactory work may be revised and resubmitted for full credit if the revision and submission is within 24 hours of the feedback.

Critical Self-Reflection:

You'll begin the course by taking a personal inventory of where you currently are in terms of the Course Outcomes (Professional, Literate, and Virtual) in the Funds of Knowledge Inventory. At the end of each week (Sunday midnight), you'll refle
ct on your personal learning and contributions in a blog post to your Portfolio Blog. This is public writing and open to the world. Then on a Google Doc that serves as the contract and reporting sheet, simply check off if you feel you have contributed satisfactorily for that week to the degree you had contracted and add any comments you feel relevant. This Google Doc is private to you and me. I'll review and provide feedback within 24 hours. You then have another 24 hours to revise and resubmit for full credit if you'd like.

At the end of the course, you will revisit your Funds of Knowledge Inventory to critically reflect on your progress towards Course Outcomes and your personal goals. This will serve as your final exam.

Peer Assessment:

Each student will take the lead in contributing to one week's Collaborative Critical Inquiry. The student will work in a team of three to design the unit on an issue/topic related to teaching literature for young adults. This unit can take the form of creating a collaborative inquiry with pre and post-discussion activities, designing an experience to engage us with the issue, or even preparing us for some opportunity to reach out into the community/the real world and make a contribution. Possibilities abound. Leaders for each unit will be responsible for assessing each member's contribution. This will be accomplished via an online survey with each member assessing themselves as well. Results will be visible to all. I'll lead the first unit on the social nature of literature (beginning May 26).


Requirements for a Grade of A:

(1) Class Attendance/Participation (includes reading/viewing/listening to unit resources and class participation) (10% of total grade)
Class attendance each week is required. If you contract for an A in the course, you may miss no more than one class with an official (doctor or pre-approved) excuse. To be approved, you must include in your advanced request for pre-approval a plan for how you will make up any missed work.

Rubric for Class Attendance/Participation

(2) Weekly Book Blog (400-500 words or equivalent) (30 % of total grade)
Each week you will read and respond to a YA book in your Portfolio Blog. The first three weeks will be devoted to Printz books, the fourth to sequential art (graphic novels), and the fifth to nonfiction. You will read and then respond to the Printz books in some form of self-expression to reflect upon what you take from your transaction with the book --- what Rosenblatt referred to as the aesthetic experience. The goal is not to summarize or review the book but to create something -- a poem, a drawing, an animation, a photograph, a podcast, a video (bookcast) -- something tangible. You then briefly reflect on your creation and what you learned about responding to literature in the process. Note that you must over the course of the semester create at least one bookcast -- a response using video.
Rubric for Weekly Book Blog . . .
Rubric for Bookcast . . .

The 4th book, Sequential Art, will be completed in a book club with a collaborative response and the 5th book, Nonfiction, will be part of the Interdisciplinary Collaborative Critical Inquiry to which your book and accompanying activity will contribute.

This book blogs are due each week on Wednesday by midnight. Each student should review the responses of other students and briefly comment before class time on Thursday at 7 pm.

3) Collaborative, Peer-Led Unit on a Selected Issue/Topic in Teaching Young Adult Literature (30% of total grade)
You will work in teams of three to research and design a unit for us on an important issue/topic related to teaching literature for young adults. Suggested issues/topics include: the freedom to read (providing books for a diversity of readers and censorship), the Common Core and nonfiction literature, reading for social justice and positive social change, cultivating empathy through literature, the reading-writing connection, literature as Vygotsky's More Knowledgeable Other (scaffolding with literature), and the social connection and reading (book clubs)[chosen by Cris]. We'll select these topics during our first Google Hangout. One student will serve as the leader and will be responsible for guiding the planning, equitable contributions, and assessing each member's contribution in the post-unit assessment survey.

These units will make a valuable contribution to our class and to the larger community of practice. Plan on posting your unit to a blog, wiki, Google site/doc by Sunday midnight for the week ahead.

Rubric for Collaborative, Peer-Led Unit

4) Weekly Critical Reflection (400 - 500 words or equivalent) (20% of total grade)
You will begin your critical reflection by reflecting on the Course Outcomes -- what you bring to the course in these areas -- and your personal goals in the Funds of Knowledge Inventory due Wednesday, May 21 midnight. At the close of each
week, you will reflect briefly on their week's contributions in a blog post to your Portfolio Blog due by Sunday midnight -- with the exception of Week 1 that you may save until Week 2's Critical Reflection due Sunday, June 1 midnight. After blogging your Critical Reflection, you will check off and add any comments to their Google Docs reporting sheet. You will receive a link to your Google Docs reporting sheet during Week 1.

Rubric for Weekly Critical Reflection

5) Interdisciplinary Collaborative Critical Inquiry Designed by Our Community of Practice (10% of total grade)
Contribute one book to our text set and an accompanying activity for our class-designed interdisciplinary project. We'll vote on the topic/issue/theme that must relate to social justice or positive social change. Note that the book you contribute could also serve as your nonfiction or graphic novel selection.

Rubric for Interdisciplinary Collaborative Critical Inquiry

6) Two Assessment Conferences (virtual via Google Hangout)
One during the first two weeks of class to discuss class requirements, personal goals and potential contributions and a second the final week of class for review and closure on the summer session's experience.

Preparation for Assessment Conferences

I understand the requirements for an A for ECI 521 and agree to complete them satisfactorily. I also understand that I can schedule a conference (virtual or physical) at any time to review my progress and renegotiate this contract if necessary.



Cris Crissman, PhD


Two Assessment Conferences (virtual via Google Hangout) -- one during the first two weeks of class to discuss class requirements, personal goals and potential contributions and a second the final week of class for review and closure on the summer session's experience.

Course Calendar and Rhythm

You may subscribe to the ECI 521 SSI 2014 Course Calendar created with Google Calendar. The calendar is also linked from the wiki homepage. You'll find due dates and announcements here.

Monday am -- Sessions begin on Mondays of each week. On this day you will receive a weekly email with news and updates on projects, assignments, and special events.
Wednesdays, midnight -- book blogs are due.
Thursday, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm ET -- Comments on fellow classmates' book blogs due prior to LIVE Class; LIVE Class Seminar at 7 pm
Sundays, midnight pm -- critical self-reflection for the week blogged and contract fulfillment checked off on Google Docs reporting sheet

Delivery Systems:

Technologies include Google Drive, Twitter, VoiceThread, Wikispaces, WordPress, and Google Hangouts. You may also choose additional tools based on the kind of multimedia responses you make to books and in your collaborative unit plans. Diigo is a collaborative bookmarking and curating tool. There is a Diigo group for the class that you may join and contribute to -- Bookhenge at


Cris Crissman

Online CV:


Course Info Site:
Course Blog:

Phone: 919/247.7955

Office Location: Virtual Office, Google Hangout or Skype or the Bookhenge on NC State's Wolflands in Second Life

Office Hours: Available to meet actually on-campus or a convenient location and/or virtually by appointment.
Course Meetings:
Live classes are held on Thursdays from 7 to 8:30 pm ET and meet virtually in Google Hangouts.

Course Materials

There are no textbooks. Young adult books are self-selected and may be checked out from public libraries. Also, D.H. Hill will often purchase eBooks for Kindles that you may check out.

Additional Resources

Common Core State Standards

Edition: Current
Web Link:

NCTE/IRA Standards for English Language Arts
Web Link:

National Board Professional Teaching Standards, English Language Arts: Adolescence & Young Adulthood - NBPTS
Web Link:

Bookhenge Diigo Group - ECI 521 Class Members & Instructor
Web Link: ****

The Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Media Education - Center for Social Media at American University
Web Link:
Cost: No cost

Video Production Studio and Consultation
Both D.H. Hill and Hunt Library have impressive video production studios that you can use plus technology consultation for one-to-one support. There's also video equipment available for loan.
Web Link:

Tech Tools

USB headset with microphone (approx. $30) or comparable set-up so no feedback from computer mic. Inexpensive ear phones/buds may work fine. We can test during our initial conferences in Google Hangouts.

This material is required. You will need it for multimedia production and LIVE classes.

Requisites and Restrictions







General Education Program (GEP) Information

GEP Category

This course does not fulfill a General Education Program category.

GEP Co-requisites

This course does not fulfill a General Education Program co-requisite.


This course will not require students to provide their own transportation. Non-scheduled class time for field trips or out-of-class activities is NOT required for this class.

Safety & Risk Assumptions

Literature for young adults is known for often pushing social boundaries. Please be forewarned that you may find some of the novels that we read as a group or you select as an individual to contain some material you consider offensive. Alternative texts may be assigned if preferred.

Also, though our meetings in Second Life will always be held on NCSU’s Wolflands Campus or the NCSU-affiliated USDLC Star Island, these are not private spaces and uninvited guests may be offensive. It is simply the 3-D Web and as the original Web and Web 2.0, there is potentially offensive material that finds us. We will do everything within our powers as builders in Second Life to minimize any threats of offensive material or occurrences. You are not required to explore other spaces in Second Life but if you choose to, please note that each island is identified with a rating (GP, PG, X, etc.) to indicate its target audience.


Grade Components include:

All assignments listed in the Contract above: Class Attendance/Participation, Weekly Book Blog, Collaborative Peer-Led Unit, Weekly Critical Reflection (includes initial Funds of Knowledge Inventory and final Funds of Knowledge Inventory which serves as the Final Exam, and Interdisciplinary Collaborative Critical Inquiry.

Letter Grades

This Course uses Standard NCSU Letter Grading.

Contracts stipulate letter grades of A and B.
















Requirements for Credit-Only (S/U) Grading

Performance in research, seminar and independent study types of courses (6xx and 8xx) is evaluated as either "S" (Satisfactory) or "U" (Unsatisfactory), and these grades are not used in computing the grade point average. For credit only courses (S/U) the requirements necessary to obtain the grade of "S" must be clearly outlined.

Requirements for Auditors (AU)

Information about and requirements for auditing a course can be found at

Policies on Incomplete Grades

If an extended deadline is not authorized by the Graduate School, an unfinished incomplete grade will automatically change to an F after either (a) the end of the next regular semester in which the student is enrolled (not including summer sessions), or (b) by the end of 12 months if the student is not enrolled, whichever is shorter. Incompletes that change to F will count as an attempted course on transcripts. The burden of fulfilling an incomplete grade is the responsibility of the student. The university policy on incomplete grades is located at Additional information relative to incomplete grades for graduate students can be found in the Graduate Administrative Handbook in Section 3.18.F at

Late Assignments

Please see Academic Regulations at for types of situations that may constitute legitimate conflicts. If such a conflict arises then contact your instructor ahead of time, if at all possible. Missed work must be made up within one week of the due date unless there are acceptable extenuating circumstances.

Please see Academic Regulations at for types of situations that may constitute legitimate absences. With an excused absence, late work may be made up with no late penalty. Late assignments should be made up within the next week after the missed class. For more information, please see Academic Regulations

An Incomplete (IN) grade is available for work not completed because of a serious interruption in work not caused by the student’s own negligence. Any IN grade not removed by the end of the next regular semester in which you are enrolled will automatically become an F grade. For more information, please see Academic Regulations at

Attendance Policy


To earn full credit for the synchronous, real-time meeting requirements, students must consistently attend class and be thoroughly prepared. Students will lose credit for an unexcused absence. An official excuse would include a doctor's note or prior approval that includes the student's plans for making up any work. If unforseen technical problems prevent a student's participation in a LIVE Class, then the student may view the archive and blog about it for full credit.


Please see Academic Regulations at for types of situations that may constitute legitimate conflicts. If such a conflict arises then contact your instructor ahead of time, if at all possible. Missed work must be made up within one week of the class missed unless there are acceptable extenuating circumstances. Please see Academic Regulations at for types of situations that may constitute legitimate absences.

Makeup Work

With an excused absence (doctor's note or prior approval, late work may be made up with no late penalty. Late assignments should be made up within the next week after the missed class. For more information, please see Academic Regulations

Additional Excuses Policy

Synchronous, real-time class meetings that are missed due to excused absences must be made-up by viewing the archived meeting and preparing a reflective essay as a blog post.

Academic Integrity

Academic Integrity

Students are required to comply with the university policy on academic integrity found in the Code of Student Conduct found at

Academic Honesty

See for a detailed explanation of academic honesty.

Honor Pledge

Your signature on any test or assignment indicates "I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid on this test or assignment."

Electronically-Hosted Course Components

This course may involve electronic sharing or posting of personally identifiable student work or other information with persons not taking or administering the course. Students will be asked to sign a consent allowing disclosure of their personally identifiable work. No student is required to sign the consent as a condition of taking the course. If a student does not want to sign the consent, he or she has the right to ask the instructor for an alternative, private means of completing the coursework.

Electronically-hosted Components: Electronically-hosted components include the blog host of choice (Blogger, Edublog, Glogster, Tumblr, WordPress, etc.), Diigo, Google Suite (Docs & Calendar), Twitter, VoiceThread, WallWisher, Wikispaces, and YouTube. Additional tools for communicating, collaborating, creating, managing, and curating may be selected by students.

Accommodations for Disabilities

Reasonable accommodations will be made for students with verifiable disabilities. In order to take advantage of available accommodations, student must register with the Disability Services Office ( located at 1900 Student Health Center, Campus Box 7509, 515-7653. For more information on NC State's policy on working with students with disabilities, please see the Academic Accommodations for Students with Disabilities Regulation at

Non-Discrimination Policy

NC State University provides equality of opportunity in education and employment for all students and employees. Accordingly, NC State affirms its commitment to maintain a work environment for all employees and an academic environment for all students that is free from all forms of discrimination. Discrimination based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or sexual orientation is a violation of state and federal law and/or NC State University policy and will not be tolerated. Harassment of any person (either in the form of quid pro quo or creation of a hostile environment) based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or sexual orientation also is a violation of state and federal law and/or NC State University policy and will not be tolerated. Retaliation against any person who complains about discrimination is also prohibited. NC State's policies and regulations covering discrimination, harassment, and retaliation may be accessed at or Any person who feels that he or she has been the subject of prohibited discrimination, harassment, or retaliation should contact the Office for Equal Opportunity (OEO) at 515-3148.

Course Schedule

NOTE: We'll update the Course Schedule each Monday to reflect any agreed upon changes to the week's schedule.

Session 1. Orientation: Getting to Know Us and the Course

(Monday, May 19 - Sunday, May 25 ) / LIVE Class Session, Thursday, May 22, 7 pm)

To Do List:
1. Sign Waiver and Consent Form (Complete by Monday, May 19, 11:59 pm). This is the only task you will have in MOODLE.
Access via

2. Send an email to me at to confirm that you received the "Let's Get Started" email and have begun work. Also, please share contact info and anything about learning needs/interests that may be helpful as we work together this session.

3. Tweet a question for our FAQs. Use #bookhenge Here's a video explaining the purpose and process for our use of Twitter in ECI 521 -- "Twitter Is the Street."
Twitter tutorial: Twitter for Teachers
Sign up for daily class newspaper digesting tweets if you'd like -- The Daily Bookhenge

4. Record Journey Book Reflection on Class "Journey Book" VoiceThread. (Complete by Tuesday, May 20, 11:59 pm). Tweet to #bookhenge when you add your Journey Book to the VoiceThread.

5. Join Class Diigo Group if you'd like. Diigo is a collaborative bookmarking and curation tool. See Diigo tutorial . . . Sign up for our class's group at The Bookhenge Group . . .

6. Complete a Funds of Knowledge Inventory in which you reflect on the three course outcomes (Professional Self, Literate Self, and Virtual Self) and take inventory of what you already bring to the course in these areas and what personal goals you have for the course. Finish this reflective essay with a synthesis that shares what you may have learned through the writing – insights, special interests, and/or themes or patterns -- and ask any questions you'd like to explore this session. Post this to a blog you create in WordPress. We'll call this blog where you present your responses to books and reflections on your coursework your Portfolio Blog. Note that if you already have a blog then you could certainly use it for your Portfolio Blog. Complete by Wednesday, May 21 midnight. This preliminary work will help us tremendously during Thursday's class meeting as we select issues/topics/inquiries for our work together.

Announce your first post to the world! Tweet to #bookhenge when you post your Funds of Knowledge Inventory. And add your blog to the Portfolio Blogroll . . .

7. Select your first Printz book and begin reading by our class meeting on Thursday. You will prepare your response to the book and post by Sunday, May 26, midnight. Plan ahead. Second Printz book response is due by Wednesday, May 28 midnight. Then you'll be in the groove of a book read and responded to by Wednesday midnight of each week.

8. Schedule a ten-minute Google Hangout with me before class time on Thursday so we can work out any technology challenges and begin to plan your work for the session. Do think about your personal goals for the course. See Preparation for Assessment Conferences

9. It's been an intense week. You need not reflect on the first week of work now but jot down a few notes to include in your critical reflection due Sunday, June 2, midnight.

Week 2, Exploring Literacy as a Socially-Mediated Experience

(Monday, May 26 - Sunday, June 1/ LIVE Class Session, Thursday, May 28, 7 pm)
Additional details will be added in each Monday's Email Update . . .
Week 2, Monday, May 26 - Sunday, June 1 (Note: 2nd Printz Book Response now due on Sunday)
2nd Printz Book Response due (Wednesday, May 28 midnight)
Before class *Thursday, May 29, 7 pm) 1) Provide feedback to Others on 1st Printz Book Responses and 2) Complete Pre- stage of our Collaborative Critical Inquiry (modeling for Peer-Led Units)
LIVE Class, Thursday, June 5, 7 pm
2nd Printz Book Response and Critical Reflection due (Sunday, June 1 midnight)

Week 3, Topic To Be Class - Selected

(Monday, June 2 - Sunday, June 8 / LIVE Class Session, Thursday, June 5, 7 pm)
Additional details will be added in each Monday's Email Update . . .

3rd Printz Book Response due (Wednesday, June 4 midnight)

Feedback to Other on 3rd Printz Book Response s due before class (Thursday, June 5, 7 pm)

LIVE Class, Thursday, June 5, 7 pm
Critical Reflection, Reporting Form, and Assessment Survey for Week 3 Collaborative Critical Inquiry (collaborative peer-unit led by Jill)
due (Sunday, June 8 midnight)

Week 4, Monday, June 9 - Sunday, June 15
Week 4 Collaborative Peer-Led CCI -- Technology and Teaching Literature (Bethany)
Sequential Art Collaborative Book Response due (Wednesday, June 11 midnight) ??? -- More planning to be done in June 5 class. (June 5 update: Respond to Sequential Art book by reflecting on the experience of reading this art form in your Critical Reflection. Do read and be prepared to discuss your experience during class time on Thursday, June 12 though).
LIVE Class, Thursday, June 12, 7 pm
Critical Reflection due (Sunday, June 15 midnight) and Assessment Survey for this week Technology-Literacy/Literature CCI.

Week 5, Monday, June 16 - Wednesday, June 25
Nonfiction contribution to Interdisciplinary Collaborative Critical Inquiry due (Wednesday, June 18 midnight) (Sadie leads)
LIVE Class, Thursday, June 19, 7 pm
Final Exam -- Update to Funds of Knowledge Inventory posted (serves as final Critical Reflection, too) (Friday, June 20 midnight) Updated June 12:-- can actually extend to Wednesday, June 25 at 5 pm if you'd like)
Complete very brief evaluation survey for the course -- will be available after final class.
Sometime after you finish your update to your Funds of Knowledge, meet for a brief exit conference. Schedule hwenever you'd like just so it's midnight on Wednesday, June 25.