With its interdisciplinary Teaching with Writing series, the Writing Across the Curriculum program offers University instructors a regular series of workshops, panels, discussions, seminars, short-courses, writing hunkers, and consultations.
We support writing instruction in the following ways:
Workshops provide practical advice for classroom activities and hands-on practice in specific techniques that faculty can then import into their classrooms and courses. Workshops are our most frequent and most interactive genre and are offered regularly throughout the semester.
By request, members of the WAC team regularly plan and co-facilitate workshops, discussions, and consultations inside departments or departmental clusters. For departments that are engaged with the Writing-Enriched Curriculum program (WEC), these sessions can be seen as a continuation of meetings in which faculty members and instructors collectively identified expected writing abilities and are looking for ways to apply elements of the department’s Writing Plan to their courses. For departments inside and outside WEC, these workshops and discussions create opportunities for faculty members and other departmental instructors to think about their courses and assignments in conversation with colleagues and members of the WAC team.
Panels and Discussions
Discussions with Readings: Participants are encouraged to explore controversial issues in contemporary writing pedagogy in a candid and open dialogue. Discussions typically include brief readings offering multiple perspectives on a topic or question.
Panel Discussions: Instructors present on and answer questions about their experiences teaching with writing in diverse fields. Panelist presentations are followed by robust discussion and question-and-answer sessions.
Faculty Learning Communities and Book Circles: These serial events bring together small groups of interested faculty to address topics of interest in greater depth. Previous book circles have addressed data visualization (Show Me the Numbers) and academic integrity (Cheating Lessons). We are always happy to convene book circles. Let us know if there is a text you are interested in discussing with colleagues!
Discussions by Request: Members of the WAC team can also plan and facilitate discussions on specific Teaching with Writing topics.
Seminars and Short Courses
Teaching with Writing seminars and short courses provide in-depth and interactive professional development sessions related to integrating course-relevant writing instruction for faculty and instructors. The Five-Day Teaching with Writing Faculty Seminar supports faculty in developing materials and approaches for a course they are planning to teach. The Teaching with Writing Short Course offers faculty and instructors an opportunity to focus on course-specific instruction in an online setting.
Faculty Writing Hunkers: This interdisciplinary program coordinates writing retreats for faculty and P&A staff members. Writing Hunkers aim to create a supportive and productive community of scholarly writers from a wide range of disciplines and a range of academic ranks at the University of Minnesota. Read more
In teaching consultations, we welcome discussion of questions or concerns about writing instruction, whether courses occur onsite or online. Because our definition of written text is multi-modal and expansive, we are happy to confer on assignments designed to elicit traditional paragraph prose, numeric text, and visual modes such as figures, sketches, etc.
Examples of consultation topics include…
- Designing goal-oriented and course-relevant approaches to writing and writing instruction
- Crafting high- and low-stakes writing assignments and activities
- Integrating brief and iterative instructional activities into class plans
- Responding to in-process drafts in ways that encourage revision
- Devising productive peer-response and self-assessment activities
- Grading student writing using valid, equitable, and efficient approaches
- Managing writing activity across course sections and instructors
Individual consultations are available at no cost and typically include follow-up conversations and communication.