Writing Across the Curriculum

The faculty at Guttman Community College are committed to creating courses and assignments in the core curriculum and in all programs of study that consistently engage students in diverse writing tasks. With Peter Elbow, we believe that writing can be a powerful learning tool when it is used consistently and intentionally in courses across the disciplines, rather than merely as means for demonstrating learning or assigning a grade. With Mina Shaughnessy, we believe that frequent and structured writing activities are essential for students who begin college underprepared for college-level writing tasks (Introduction to Errors and Expectations:  A Guide for Teachers of Basic Writing). And with David Bartholomae we can attest to the cognitive strengths of underprepared and/or otherwise marginalized students and thus to their capacity for success with college level reading and writing tasks (Inventing the University).

Within CUNY, a Writing Fellow is an advanced Ph.D. student from The Graduate Center who works 225 hours per year at a campus WAC Program. At Guttman Community College, WAC Fellows work with faculty and instructional teams to promote writing across the curriculum in the innovative first-year experience and in the six programs of study. The Fellow’s role is to support the development of curricula, assignments, classroom activities, and assessment measures grounded in best practices for teaching with writing. In collaboration with the WAC Coordinator,  Fellows facilitate faculty and staff development workshops and assist in the creation and assessment of syllabi and writing assignments. In particular, Fellows work with faculty and other members of the instructional teams to plan and refine writing activities that support students with diverse backgrounds and differing levels of preparation.