BRANDY BIPPES portrait
  • Assistant Professor (Lecturer), Writing and Rhetoric Studies

Current Courses

Fall 2024

  • WRTG 1008-301
    Academic Writing
  • WRTG 1010-301
    Introduction To Writing
    Location: UAC 304 (Utah Asia Campus)
  • WRTG 1010-302
    Introduction To Writing
    Location: TBA (TBA)
  • WRTG 3015-301
    Professional Writing
    Location: TBA (TBA)

Spring 2024

Professional Organizations

  • TESOL International Organization. 11/18/2023 - present. Position : Member.
  • Lambda Alpha National Collegiate Honors Society for Anthropology. 05/01/2012 - present. Position : Member.

Teaching Philosophy

I teach because I have always loved learning, though I have not always loved the instruction I received. I have often felt that my own education was far more critical than it was constructive. As a self-directed introvert who has learned to perform in extroverted contexts, I didn’t understand the value of groupwork and verbally sharing ideas until I wore the shoes of Instructor. As I trained to become an instructor, I paid particular attention to the reasons behind theoretical classroom approaches with the realization that students are each different in their reasons, goals, approaches, and perceptions of learning. I decided that by communicating my reasons for the instructions I give, students might understand my theoretical approaches and develop room for agreeing, disagreeing, and taking ownership of their own learning. Collaborative and communicative classroom instruction values guided research-based social construction of knowledge where that ownership and pride in their successes and failures can flourish and change. Student-centered spaces lower the affective filter and maximize learning opportunity.

 The ability to laugh at myself and to admit my own mistakes offers students the opportunity to understand their own fallibility and realize there is no expectation of a coveted form of perfection. I create a learning environment that is welcoming but also strict in attendance because learning starts in the classroom then is expanded to include elements of our real, functional worlds beyond. Classes are a combination of lecture, mini-lessons (10-25 minutes), and hands-on collaborative work including peer- and self-review. We frequently take lessons out of the classroom to digital spaces and other tangible spaces to maximize experiential learning. We often flip the classroom to maximize collaborative time and reduce homework.

Evidence-based learning rather than product-based assessments encourage students to take risks and even fail forward into learning. Offering students formative assessment rather than summative assessment encourages them to take risks engaging in the process of learning, failing, learning from their mistakes, revising, and resubmitting. For the student this often means an adjustment in students’ understanding of academic culture, especially in populations accustomed to strict summative assessment and cram mentality. For the instructor, this means more time spent explaining the culture of this methodology. It means more grading and offering feedback to students with the expectation of revision. It means providing iterative instruction to concepts and negotiating future lesson plans based on student aptitude on a rolling basis. It means getting to know students on an individual intellectual level, and short of developing individualized education plans (IEPs), each student is challenged to recognize their particular strengths and to recognize their individual weaknesses as points of strength as they receive particular attention.

My syllabi are detailed with course expectations and course objectives clearly stated and frequently reiterated throughout each course. A tentative moderately detailed course calendar provides students with an anticipatory set of workload, topics, and deadlines; it is also adaptable as needed. The syllabus for WRTG 1008 clearly articulates which course outcomes pertain to each major assignment and course expectation as students learn to recognize the importance of instructional outcomes. Each assignment is clearly articulated verbally and in writing—this is often presented as a follow-up to the in-class work and articulated on the course LMS where students can spend as much time as they need decoding instructions individually and among their peers and asking me questions.

Collaborative and communicative instructional methods encourage students to first seek answers among their peers before approaching the instructor. This is also true with problem resolution. A recent experience examples how this might look:

Usually, before a F2F class, it’s ideal to create and publish a complete Canvas course. When students open Canvas, they see a neatly organized Canvas course with due-date reminders that pop up following course workshops. Ideally.

I wasn’t exactly sure what I would do with one course I was teaching because I wanted to swap out one major assignment for something different that would meet the same course outcomes. The new assignment was organized on a different timeline than the previous, and it required several checkpoints that were added to Canvas after our class discussion and class vote for the change to the online writing project. This resulted in Canvas delivering a massive spam of upcoming assignments students felt overwhelmed by.

Thankfully, I had built a good rapport with the students, who brought the issue to me after discussing it among themselves. They were understandably upset; however, since they had brought the problem to me, we talked through it, they took ownership of developing a new model of the assignment, and I allowed them to reduce the amount of work they felt was redundant “busy” work (as well as pointing out how this was not like the other instructors’ courses!). I cancelled the day’s lesson to address the concerns and negotiate a space that would satisfy them, me, and the institution. We furthered our discussion of the value of Socratic disagreement in the U.S. university, and I praised their work in problem solving. Since that day, we’ve simply moved forward as a tighter unit with a new feeling of mutual respect.

I often relate to students the teaching methods I’m employing so they gain further understanding of the expectations of how they might reach specific outcomes and further awareness of how they’re being taught. I often share examples of real student work (sans grades) to highlight good or excellent work with encouragement that other students follow the example. Each week, I look for a different student to highlight for something done particularly well or solidly. This encourages students to value their work as exemplary and other students to engage in mimetic learning from their peers. Practice at the entry level, I believe, will provide students with a comfortable transition into higher-level academic writing where peer review is an integral part of the publishing process.

My own research is somewhat ethnographic and founded in my undergraduate understanding of anthropological human interests. Each student comes from a unique background that plays a critical role in how they decode the world. My research and teaching both recognize the objective nature of the student-as-user in a curated student experience which is subjective and reasonably individualized to accommodate varying student-user needs. Students’ reasons for joining a particular program or for taking a particular course fall on a spectrum—especially a required core course such as English 101 or pre-university courses students might view as remedial necessity mandated by the institution for reasons they don’t understand or agree with. My goals are to balance meeting institutional/departmental/course outcomes with students’ personal/academic objectives. This means listening, adapting, and remaining vigilant so that both parties’ needs are met and neither is compromised. In the end, the goal is that each student learns something new and develops an appreciation for their contribution in the process.

Courses I Teach

  • WRTG 1008 - Foundations for U.S. Academic Writing
    Course prepares students to transition into American university writing courses. Assignments include reviews of written grammar and organization, Academic Vocabulary building, and individual and collaborative writing/revision. Course is for students with limited experience writing academic English papers, responses, and/or critical analyses of complex English readings.
  • WRTG 1010 - Introduction to Writing
    Students learn to read and write rhetorically, develop and support claims, and produce and evaluate writing in collaboration with peers. Course readings and assignments emphasize writing for diverse purposes and disciplines.
  • EAS 1040 - English Grammar & Editing
    Emphasis in on the review of sentence-level grammar in personal writing.
  • WRTG 3875 - Histories & Theories of Rhetoric
    A survey of select rhetorical theories across peoples, places, and times. Emphasizes connections between rhetoric and writing. Students will be introduced to global rhetorical traditions and contemporary rhetorical theories, including critical rhetorical perspectives from groups historically excluded from the European/Euro-American canon. Students strongly advised to take WRTG 3870 prior to this course. Prerequisite: WRTG 2010.
  • WRTG 4010 - Writing Across Borders
    Prepares students to write for culturally and linguis
  • WRTG 6000 - Writing for Publication
    Intended for graduate students or advanced undergraduates in all disciplines. At UAC, this experiential course prepares students for presentation at local symposia (e.g. UAC/IGC) and an optional international writing conference. Students will prepare to present at an international conference and will prepare funding applications for their projects. A recommended international conference is optional and takes place after the close of this course. Students will prepare a panel or poster presentation for an international conference that is inclusive of undergraduate and graduate students and provides a publishing opportunity. Students enrolled in WRTG 6000 will be invited to participate in a Writers’ Retreat in Korea with WRS faculty (optional).
  • ECE 3030 - Technical Communication for Engineers
    This course is designed to prepare students for writing and communication efforts specific to their careers in engineering. Students will develop written and oral communication skills through shorter in-class and homework assignments, a lengthier IEEE-style article, and oral presentations. A combination of writing and oral presentation exercises will emphasize delivering information in a clear, concise fashion. Students will learn to tailor messages to different audiences: colleagues and mentors, the general public, government agencies and the media. Teamwork, ethical considerations and organizational issues will also be addressed.
  • CVEEN 3100 - Technical Communication for Engineers
    Learning to communicate orally and in writing is an essential component of an undergraduate engineering education. The course addresses the fundamentals of writing and reviewing technical documents, presenting scientific information through graphs and tables, and preparing technical presentations. Enrollment Requirements: Prerequisites: "C-" or better in ((WRTG 2010 OR EAS 1060 OR HONOR 2211) OR AP Lit Comp score of 4+ OR AP Lang Comp score of 4+) AND Full Major Status in (Civil Engineering OR Construction Engineering).
  • UGS 2230 - Global Citizenship
    This course explores a series of topics important to developing awareness of responsible and conscientious global citizenship. Multiple themed units, readings, videos, audio, individual, and group activities and presentations guide students through gaining an increased understanding of the ever-changing world around them. Students will explore the waves of feminism and critically analyze global events through a beginning researcher’s lens of the waves of feminism.

Student Projects

  • Cultivating Wellbeing: A Digital Mental Health Initiative in Spiti Valley Supported by Undergraduate Research & Opportunities Grant (UROG) $3547 . Codd, N. 05/01/2023 - 06/07/2024
  • Integrated Writing Planning System.” Poster Presentation. Undergraduate Electrical & Computer Engineering (ECE). Asia Undergraduate Research Symposium (AURS 11); Tokyo, Japan. Supported by Undergraduate Research & Opportunities Grant (UROG) $722. Kim, H. 08/28/2023 - 06/07/2024
  • Analyzing the Tokyo Subway system.” Poster Presentation. Undergraduate urban Ecology. Asia Undergraduate Research Symposium (AURS 11); Tokyo, Japan. Co-mentor: Dr. Reazul Ahsan. Lee, D. 03/31/2023 - 06/07/2024
  • The Social Roots of Suicide: Theorizing How to Reduce Risk Factors of Depression Among University Students. The Asian Conference on Psychology & the Behavioral Sciences 2023 Graduate Student Presentation & Publication in Conference Proceedings. Co-mentor: Waters, B. Codd, N., Lee, J., Burnett, D. W., & Cho, Y. 11/30/2022 - 06/06/2024