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Cynthia Bair Van Dam

Hurst Sr Professorial Lecturer Department of Literature

Additional Positions at AU

  • Chair, AU Core Committee
  • Faculty Director, Complex Problems Community Pilot
Cindy Bair Van Dam is a compositionist who joined the Department of Literature faculty in 1995. In addition to teaching in the Writing Studies Program, Cindy is also the Chair of the General Education Committee and serves as the Faculty Director of the Complex Problems Community Pilot. She earned an MA from American University and a BA from the University of Nebraska. Before coming to AU, she taught in the English Department at Howard University. Her research interests include composition pedagogy, information literacy, and contingent faculty issues. In recognition of her leadership while developing the new AU Core, Cindy was honored with the Milton and Sonia Greenberg Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Award in 2017. She also won the University Honors Program's Outstanding Professor Award 2003-2004. When she's not working, she's reading contemporary fiction, Austen, or Rowling. Or she's rooting for the Cornhuskers.

Degrees

MA in Literature, American University
BA in English, University of Nebraska

Book Currently Reading
A Gentleman in Moscow (Towles) Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman (West)

Download CV (PDF)

Office
CAS - Literature
Battelle Tompkins - 245
Mondays and Thursdays 11:00-12:00
Contact Info
(202) 885-2983 (Office)

Send email to Cynthia Bair Van Dam

For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.
See Also
Department of Literature
Writing Center

Partnerships & Affiliations

Teaching

  • Spring 2017

  • Fall 2017

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Professional Presentations

Presenter (refereed), Equality or Exploitation?: Questioning the Risks and Rewards of Contingent Faculty Service"," Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2015

Presenter (refereed), “The Walking Dead: Motivating Millennials as Pragmatic Idealists,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2014

Presenter (refereed), Did Not Attend.  “Life in the Fast Lane: Why Students are Speeding Through Research, Reading and Writing,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2013

Presenter (refereed), “The Efficiency Generation: Understanding Why Students Make Odd Choices When They Research and Write,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2012

Presenter (refereed), “Did you hear the one about…? Plagiarism Narratives,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2010

Chair (refereed), “Remixing Reading, Writing, Responding,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2010

Presenter (refereed), "Teaching Students to Grade Between the Lines: a Contemporary Evolution of Peer Response,” National Council of Teachers of English Conference, November, 2009

Presenter (refereed), “The Limitations of the Supervisor-as-Mentor: a Three-tier Solution,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, April 2008

Invited Presenter (refereed), “Inventing the Academic Writer: Teaching Strategies for Complicating the Middle-Class Writer-Identity,” Hawaii Conference on Arts and Humanities, 2007.

Presenter (refereed), “Consenting Adults: Peer Grading by Consensus,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2004

Presenter (refereed), “Apocalypse Now?  Apocalypse Not!: Creating Collegiality among Contingent Writing Faculty,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2003

Presenter (refereed), “Strategies for Creating Information Literate Writers,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, March 2002

Honors, Awards, and Fellowships

  • Outstanding Service to the University Community in a Term-line Appointment, 2017
  • The Milton and Sonia Greenberg Scholarship for Teaching and Learning Award, 2017
  • Outstanding Professor, The University Honors Program, American University 2003-2004
  • Professor of the Year, Eta Lambda Chapter of Chi Omega, 2007