Academic journal article College English

TYCA Guidelines for Preparing Teachers of English in the Two-Year College

Academic journal article College English

TYCA Guidelines for Preparing Teachers of English in the Two-Year College

Article excerpt

These guidelines recommend that graduate programs adopt four broad goals for meeting the needs of future two-year college and open admissions faculty, who constitute the teaching majority:

? Make two-year colleges visible to graduate students;

? Collaborate with two-year college colleagues;

? Develop curricula relevant to two-year college teaching;

? Prepare future two-year college faculty to be engaged professionals.

Some of the key recommendations include the following:

? Integrate readings and discussions of two-year colleges and two-year college issues across English studies graduate curricula;

? Collaborate with area two-year colleges to establish mentorship and research networks for graduate students;

? Partner with area two-year colleges to create teaching and writing center practica that will give graduate students hands-on experience in two-year college settings;

? Invite interested doctorate-holding two-year college faculty to teach graduate courses and/or serve on relevant thesis and dissertation committees;

? Expand graduate course offerings to include topics valuable to faculty teaching in open admissions and teaching-intensive colleges and universities, including two-year colleges;

? Support thesis and dissertation projects relevant to two-year colleges;

? Familiarize graduate students with TYCA and its flagship journal, Teaching English in the Two-Year College;

? Encourage graduate students to participate in state, regional, and national professional organizations with a significant two-year college presence, particularly (although not exclusively) TYCA, CCCC, NCTE, CWPA, IWCA, NCPTW, MLA, CRLA, and NADE.


Community College Contexts


For over a century, community colleges have played a unique role in higher education, one rooted in democratic educational opportunity for all. Most community colleges have open admission policies and endeavor to serve the values and needs of the communities in which they are situated. In addition to preparing students for transfer to a four-year college or university, two-year college missions generally include basic skill development (ESL, GED, etc.), workforce training, and continuing education. Today there are more than 1100 community colleges in the United States, and these institutions enroll 46 percent of all US undergraduates (2015 Community College).


Two-year colleges serve an extraordinarily diverse student population. Community colleges enroll the majority of African American, Latinx, and Native American college students in addition to returning adult students, dual-enrolled high school students, multilingual and "Generation 1.5" students, veterans, and students with disabilities. Because most two-year colleges are open-admissions, students also enter with a wide range of prior academic experiences; a majority are placed into at least one developmental reading, writing, or math course ("Developmental Education"). According to the American Association of Community Colleges, more than one-third of community college attendees are first-generation college students. Most work part- or full-time while attending school, and many have children or other significant family responsibilities. Although two-year colleges are more affordable than their four-year college counterparts, the majority of community college attendees rely on some sort of financial aid (2015 Community College). In many cases, two-year college students face a range of material challenges that impact their class attendance, persistence, and ability to complete coursework. While the diversity of community college students can present unique challenges in the English classroom, the range of experiences and perspectives these students bring is one of the great joys of teaching in these settings.


Teaching in a community college is a distinct academic profession with its own opportunities, challenges, and character (Reynolds and Holladay-Hicks). …

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