Writing in a Digital World

Thomas Polk

Session Information

Year: 2017 | Time: 4:15pm-5:45pm (Poster Session) | Location: Johnson Center (Dewberry Hall)

Abstract

Over the past two years, the Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) program has been conducting an extensive review of George Mason University’s writing-intensive (WI) courses. As part of this review, WAC has explored the kinds of texts students read, the types of writing students are composing, and the major constraints faculty experience teaching WI courses. In the fall of 2016, WAC program staff conducted a review of syllabi from all WI courses on record in all colleges and schools offering undergraduate majors (62 academic units in total). This process entailed the review of 107 syllabi from 86 different WI courses taught during the spring 2015, fall 2015, and a few previous semesters. This review of syllabi focused on answering one question: What types of writing are being assigned in WI courses? In order to answer this question, WAC Program staff recorded writing assignments as listed on syllabi into two major categories (high stakes and low stakes) and several subcategories (different genres). This poster presentation will share the results of that review and draw on those results to explore the question: Are we writing in a digital world? This question will allow us to explore what it means to write in a digital world and to provide suggestions for incorporating writing projects inspired by the digital world.

Keywords

active learning; learning spaces; collaborative learning; hybrid courses; student writing

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