Alexander Dickow is a teacher of French language, literature and culture trained in the communicative approach to language teaching, which is based on learning fully within the target language (French) and using learner-centered conversational activities. The communicative approach demands an environment of trust and positive reinforcement in which the student feels comfortable with moments of partial understanding and with making mistakes on their way to proficiency. It also demands that the language instructor use words and gesture to model language exchanges in predictable and consistent ways, so that the students can follow the daily lesson as they might follow a well-known dance routine.
In culture and literature classes, Dickow especially cultivates approaches to writing as a process, allowing for rewrites in response to the professor's feedback and encouraging one-on-one discussion of compositions. Students are rewarded for showing effort and progress in their written work, rather than on a final, unrevised product. Dickow incorporates some exposure to scholarly materials beyond primary sources through guided research-based writing.
In Virginia Tech's Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, French professors share duties between courses in culture, language and literature. As a result, Dickow has taught courses ranging from first-year elementary French to graduate courses (the 1000-5000 levels). In 2013-2014, Dickow participated in the Early Career/New Faculty Teaching Certificate program run by Virginia Tech's Center for Instructional Development and Educational Research (CIDER).
More information about courses taught to date by Dickow is available in his curriculum vitae.
FORTHCOMING COURSES AND SEMINARS (SUBJECT TO CHANGE)
SEMINARS AS VISITING SCHOLAR AT BAR ILAN UNIVERSITY, ISRAEL
"Contre-saints et héros inverses: modernité et exemplarité, circa 1900-1930," Tuesday, March 8th, 2016, 16:00-18:00, Location TBA, in French/en français
"Power, Paris, Perloff, and Periphery: Conceptualism and Contemporary Poetries in French and English," Tuesday, June 7th, 2016, 16:00-18:00, Location TBA, in English/en anglais
FRENCH COURSES, FALL 2016
FR3314 -- Introduction to Francophone Studies
FR4314 -- Studies in French Literature: Science Fiction in France
FR5404 -- Topics in French Studies: Science Fiction in France