Rethinking our Narratives of “Development”
Tuesday, December 11th | York University
Dr. Karen-Elizabeth Moroski, Reconsidering Our Rhetorics: Recentering Writing Centre Work To Support Translingual Writing
Please register by Friday November 16th.
The notion of the “development” of the student writer runs through writing centre narratives. Here at York University’s Writing Centre, our department’s constitution, mission statement, and practiced introductions with new students all clarify that we’re interested in supporting the development of student writers rather than the perfection of student writing. This frees us from taking on the urgency of our students’ deadlines, and serves as a straightforward rationale for our refusals to proofread work on behalf of student writers. However, it raises significant questions about how we conceptualize “development.”
- What are the assumptions about “good” or “acceptable” writing that inform our understandings of “development”?
- How are we communicating these standards to our students?
- What are we telling them they need to learn or do in order to “become better writers”?
- What forces pressure us to act as gatekeepers, helping to strip away the aspects of student writers’ languages, cultures, or identities that don’t belong in the academy, and what opportunities do we have to resist these pressures?
Continue reading “Announcement || Rethinking Our Narratives of “Development” | SouthWestern Ontario Writing Centre Symposium, December 11, York University”
Margaret Procter is a scholar of writing and rhetoric in Canada, and mentor to many writing centre scholars, tutors, and administrators. Inkshed (CASLL), the brain child of Russ Hunt (St Thomas University), is a key organization in the development of writing and rhetoric in Canada, which Theresa Hyland called, “the grandmother” of both the CASDW and CWCA. The Inkshed archives are an important and vital history and repository.
How does a country invent a new discipline? The answer for Canada would have to involve the organization commonly called Inkshed (otherwise the Canadian Association for the Study of Language and Learning). It brought university teachers together in person and online from 1982 to 2015 to discuss how students learn to use texts, write with their own voices, and interact to develop ideas. In the process, Inkshed gave Canadian writing-centre faculty a way to think about their particular kind of teaching and helped them become growth points in the emerging discipline of writing studies. As a new writing-centre director in the 1990s, I found a community in Inkshed conferences, listserv exchanges, and newsletters. I learned from Inkshed what writing instruction could be, and gained encouragement by seeing others navigate the issues I also faced. Continue reading…
Two new articles have been published in the Canadian Journal for the Study of Discourse and Writing.
In “The Once and Future Writing Centre: A Reflection and Critique,” Anthony Paré reflects on his career, much of it spent running a writing centre at McGill. Here is the abstract:
Despite nearly four decades of teaching and studying writing, including many years as a writing centre instructor and director, I really don’t know what will happen to Canadian writing centres, and I am also uncertain about what should happen. However, I have some reflections on our past, some concerns about how we got here, and some thoughts about how we might move forward. I should acknowledge that the criticisms I offer here began in self-reflection: looking back over my work in a writing centre, I recognize that I have been guilty of all that I describe in the following pages. But I haven’t been alone.
Laurier University press release – Laurier makes workforce reductions to help address budget challenges
The Record article – Laurier faculty members feel ‘absolutely gutted’ by staff cuts
CTVNews piece – Wilfrid Laurier University cuts 22 positions amid financial difficulties
Twitter – #mourning22