Tim Parker teaches courses in professional writing and rhetoric and composition.

Research and Creative Interests: Online Learning Appalachian Culture

Teaching Interests: Online Learning, Professional Writing, Rhetoric and Composition

Teaching Approach: With composition, a hands-­on approach is necessary. In other words, with coaching from an instructor, students create a series of drafts, working toward an effective end result. Professional writing is a bit more technical, requiring attention to style and formats. More and more, I'm selling out to online learning. The options and availability are compelling.

Why did you become an English professor? Long story that relates to law school: but, at an early age, I developed a passion for a good story, especially Sci­fi. I'm fascinated by exquisite language and exceptional creativity.

Why teach? Well, too many people produce and accept too much bad writing. We can do better. In a Professional Writing situation, people will always need clear communication, and anyone who works in that environment should know how to produce effective messages.

What do you expect of students? In a classroom setting, an open mind and a willingness to participate are essential. I don't expect perfection, but I do expect effort.

Outside of being a professor, what do you do for fun and/or relaxation? I much prefer to be outside. Many mornings, I sit on the porch reading through coffee stains, or I stand under a maple tree wondering why my watermelons won't grow. Some days I fume over keeping my smoker at 250 degrees, or I might chase bass in the Chickamauga, or lose trout on the Hiwassee.

What's something about you that might surprise your students? Originally and philosophically, I am a carpenter.