Student engagement is a good thing. We’ve heard that for decades. Alexander Astin asked the question, “What matters in college?” then answered by saying a big percentage of what matters is student engagement (Astin, 1997). Pike & Kuh (2005, p. 186) agree in a summary statement about this issue, saying, “. . . students learn from what they do in college.” . . .
How many times have you heard a student ask, “How does this relate to my life?” Autobiography and life writing can be a transformative tool in the classroom to help elicit answers to this question. After all, we all come to college with a different set of life experiences that make up the whole of who we understand ourselves to be. But how might we learn from these past experiences? . . .