Discourse of the Inquisitive

Editors: Jaclyn Maria Fowler and Bjorn Mercer


Good communication skills are necessary for articulating learning, especially in online classrooms. It is often through writing that learners demonstrate their ability to analyze and synthesize the new concepts presented in the classroom. In other words, writing gives students the opportunity to work with the content of the classroom, making learning more active and, therefore, helping new concepts move more readily to long-term memory. Because writing—in the guise of discussion prompts, essays, research papers, and other projects—is generally the main type of assessment, it has a big impact on learners’ grades. For students to succeed, therefore, it is important to know how to write well.

Yet most writing professors spend the first minutes of every new course hearing about how their newly enrolled students hate writing; regrettably, their fear of writing affects their ability to communicate effectively. So, while their focus is to teach and model the writing process, writing professors must first spend a significant amount of time quelling the disquiet students feel about writing before helping them build skills and confidence in the writing process. When writing and communication instructors are successful, their students are better positioned to succeed as well.

Discourse of the Inquisitive brings together professors and professor-writers from the Departments of Communication and English at APUS to offer their insights into good communication and how to articulate its form to others. From the basic building blocks of writing to directive feedback, from academic discourse to creative art forms, and from military students to adult learners, the anthology is filled with tips, tricks, and strategies to improve communication skills inside the classroom and out.