My Teaching Life: Natasha Jones

natasha-jones-photoMember of ATTW since 2009

Occupation: Assistant Professor, Department of English Language and Literature

Institution: University of New Mexico, Albuquerque


My spare bedroom serves as my office in my home. It’s pretty run-of-the mill, but the piles of unfolded laundry on the bed gives it character. On campus, I painted my office walls bright red and put in a small loveseat. It’s cozy!

DeskOn her desk right now

On my desk, I have a manuscript that I am working on, a Stephen King book, and drafts of assignment sheets for a new course that I am piloting in the fall. There are also tons of little post-its notes that I use for marking important passages in books that I am reading.

Her favorite place to read or study

I like my couch at home.

HillCurrently reading for pleasure

Joe Hill’s 20th Century Ghosts

perkinsblylerCurrently reading for your scholarship or teaching

Perkins’s and Blyler’s Narrative and Professional Communication

chicagoHer most dog-eared print reference book

Chicago Manual of Style

Favorite technology for writing and researching

I like to use the Mac in my office.

Favorite teaching technologies

­­­I couldn’t teach without a computer and a projector. I like to show YouTube clips, films, website examples, and Powerpoint presentations in my courses.

Her teaching philosophy

I consider myself an expressivist. All of my students have knowledge, backgrounds, experiences that can help them to become better writers, scholars, and citizens. I also firmly believe that students are looking for something to care about, issues that concern them and the world around them. The classroom should provide a forum for students to explore their issues and concerns while helping them to develop the skills that they will need to move forward in their personal and professional endeavors.

Favorite class to teach

I like teaching just about everything. Most recently, I really enjoyed teaching a grant and proposal writing course. My students paired up with the University of New Mexico’s Innocence and Justice Project to write grants and seek funding for the non-profit organization. My students really felt like the work that they were doing mattered. It was an awesome experience. (Link to the Innocence Network)

The reason she loves teaching technical communication

I love the interaction with students. I like challenging my students to see technical communication in a new light. Most students think that technical communication is dry and boring. I love when I can help my students see that technical communication is really about people.