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Wake Forest symposium to focus on teaching, improving student writing


October 30, 2008

Wake Forest University will help college educators address how to effectively teach writing in the 21st century and how to improve student writing  across disciplines at the symposium “Ways of Writing for the 21st Century:  The Classroom and Beyond” at 3 p.m. Nov. 17 in Benson University Center, Room 401A.  The event is free and open to the public.    

The symposium will include a panel discussion featuring four national writing experts who will discuss composition theory and offer practical methods for addressing the changing needs of students who write in the 21st century.  In addition, each expert will hold a small informal discussion on a topic specific to their expertise.  

  • Joseph Harris is the director of the University Writing Program at Duke University and author of “Rewriting:  How to Do Things with Texts” and “A Teaching Subject:  Composition since 1966.”  He will hold a session titled “How to Make Writing Visible in the Disciplines.”
  • Nancy Sommers, former director of the Expository Writing Program and the Harvard Writing Project at Harvard University and author of numerous articles on composition, will present “Lessons Learned from the Harvard Writing Assessment.”
  • David Smit, professor of English at Kansas State, is the author of the new book “The End of Composition Studies.”  He will explore how teachers can make and meet goals in the teaching of writing.
  • Elizabeth Wardle will host “Writing Genres,” a session on the importance of introducing students to writing theory.  She is associate professor and director of the writing program at the University of Central Florida and author of numerous articles on writing studies, genre theory and teaching first-year seminars.

The panelists will also be available throughout the day Nov. 17 to meet with university faculty.  Those interested in scheduling an appointment should contact Anne Boyle at (336) 758-5400. 

The event is sponsored by Wake Forest’s English department and The Teaching and Learning Center.

Press Contacts:

Pam Barrett
(336) 758-5237


Kevin Cox
(336) 758-5237


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