Elizabeth Elaine Tavares

PhD Candidate & Instructor
Department of English
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


When I teach literature—from surveys of British literature and Shakespeare, to film production, first-year writing and fiction seminars—I work with students to develop close reading skills, to recognize textual nuance, and to consider modes of reception. In survey courses, I include a MadLib-style worksheet where students fill in the names of neighbors to reveal the didactic underpinnings of the medieval play Mankind. To articulate the effects of documentaries in their evidentiary choices and cultural impact, students curate an online web museum of artifacts the film has produced in its lifetime using the Omeka platform. Short stories and novels in the magical realist vein, such as Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber and Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s A Hundred Years of Solitude, underscore the porous border between fiction and non-fiction in genre seminars. And in first-year composition courses students are exposed to plagiarism controversies—from John Milton’s Areopagitica to Shepard Fairey—to consider how citation practices are culturally and historically contingent. I have routinely been named to the campus-wide list of Teachers Ranked as Excellent because students find my courses enliven texts across mediums. In this section you will find evidence of my teaching from student evaluations and awards, pedagogy certifications, and statements on teaching, technology and diversity in higher education.

Current Courses

On fellowship for the 2015-2016 academic year to complete my dissertation. For more, click on a heading below.

Courses Taught

Shakespeare and Performance: A humanities introductory course for English major, focusing on the conjunction of dramatic rhetoric with original performance practices.
Magical Realim(s): An Introduction to Fiction: An advanced composition course for non-English majors, focusing on Magical Realism as a genre that interrogates the division between fiction and non-fiction and a locus for developing analytical writing skills.
An Introduction to Film: A humanities core course for non-English majors, surveying the technical, historical, and analytic fundamentals of film.
British Literature to 1798: A humanities introductory course for English majors, surveying the entirety of British literary history, from the medieval period through the long eighteenth century.
Research and Writing: An introductory composition course for non-English majors, focusing on fundamentals of college-level composition, rhetoric, and research practices.

Teaching Portfolio

For my complete teaching portfolio, including sample syllabi and teaching instruments, descriptions of courses taught and prepared to teach, as well as statistical analysis of student evaluations, click here for a table of contents or contact me for a copy.
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(217) 300-4253
240 English Building

Office hours by appointment only, as I will be on research leave for the 2015-16 academic year.