The Design, Housing, and Apparel (DHA) department—one of three departments in the College of Design—comprises the Apparel Design, Graphic Design, Interior Design, Housing Studies, Product Design, and Retail Merchandising programs. Collectively, the department enrolls approximately 900 undergraduate majors. Working in both studio-based and traditional course genres, DHA's 30+ faculty members expand traditional notions of writing by emphasizing visual image presentation and by maintaining an active outreach program which involves direct communication with Minnesota citizens.
DHA joined the WEC program in 2007, and the Campus Writing Board approved the DHA third-edition Writing Plan in August 2013. Early editions of the Writing Plan emphasized in-depth curricular mapping, artifact collection, and faculty interviews in each program. More recently, as part of its effort to address the writing concerns of its linguistically diverse student population, the department hosted a faculty workshop focused on supporting multilingual writers. The session was jointly facilitated by a WEC team member and two language acquisition experts.
Implementation goals in 2013–14 include customized faculty development workshops on writing assignment design, and teaching with writing in online/virtual environments. To enhance students' understanding of writing in professional contexts, DHA sponsored two panel discussions with local Apparel Design and Graphic Design professionals. Finally, two WEC Research Assistants developed customized and program-specific "teaching with writing in five-minute increments" workshops for use in undergraduate courses.