Dr. Jonathan Ritz, assistant professor of English at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, has received a University of Pittsburgh Innovation in Education Award. It’s one of 11 proposals that received funding under the eighth annual Provost’s Advisory Council on Instructional Excellence innovation in education awards program.
Dr. Ritz will use the grant to “create a new paradigm for the standard composition courses UPJ’s incoming students take in the first and second semesters of their freshman year.” The new course, called First Year Writing, will be offered in seminar/tutorial format, and will provide a profound enhancement to the first year experience of UPJ students. According to Dr. Ritz, the class size will be limited to 18 students and a significant portion of the contact hours will be devoted to specific individual theme, though each section will also follow a cohesive standard curriculum in terms of writing assignments and student assessment.
Founded in 1927 and celebrating 80 years, the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown is a four-year, degree-granting college of the University of Pittsburgh with an enrollment of approximately 3,200. The university offers more than 40 majors and is known for its engineering technology, education, humanities, and natural and social sciences degree programs. UPJ has been ranked “Third in the North” among public comprehensive colleges and universities, northern region, by U.S. News and World Report, America’s Best Colleges, 2007.