Tag Archives: WAW

Writing About Writing Standing Group (CCCC 2021)


On behalf of the WAW SIG, we would like to invite you to take part in our upcoming general membership meeting.

WHEN: April 15, 2021, 6 P.M. CT (7 P.M. ET) WHERE: https://meet.google.com/rjz-ohtp-bci (Google Meet)

This meeting is set to have breakout groups, as well as a brief presentation from Doug Downs with respect to the recent revision work on the WPA Bibliography. 


Samuel Stinson & John WhickerCo-CoordinatorsWriting About Writing Development Group

A Standing Group of CCCC

Listserv: https://list.pitt.edu/mailman/listinfo/wawnlist

Website:  https://writingaboutwriting.net/

Writing about Writing Processes: Self-regulation and Process logs

Writing about Writing Processes: Self-regulation and Process logs

Ryan Roderick, Husson University | Bangor, ME, USA


In this post, I consider how WAW pedagogies might benefit from research on self-regulation of writing. Self-regulation refers to an ability to monitor and control knowledge and practices in pursuit of a goal. Drawing on self-regulation research, I present a prompt I call the “process log” that encourages students to self-regulate their writing. Then, I analyze some of the process logs I’ve collected as part of IRB-approved studies, to offer some examples of what researchers might learn when using process logs as an artifact of analysis. Ultimately, I suggest that WAW courses might use the process log as a way to encourage students to write about writing processes.


When was the last time you wrote something that you struggled with, and what did you do that may have helped or hindered your progress? If you can answer this question, then you are likely demonstrating at least some self-regulation strategies.

We know well that what works for someone in one context might not work for a different someone or a different context. Nevertheless, some strategies are creative and helpful. For example, the faculty member working on a manuscript is able to schedule deliberate interruptions that allow her writing to incubate by doing laundry while she writes (Prior and Shipka).

In contrast, other strategies for writing do not seem as helpful. Like the student who is stuck in a cycle of repeatedly procrastinating and then busting out essays shortly before the deadline, which are subsequently met with a failing grade from the instructor and the student’s regret for not having used more effective strategies (Cleary).  

As a writing teacher, I want to know what effective and ineffective strategies might look like across diverse writers and contexts in order to help students develop an ability to recognize and adapt their own writing strategies as they encounter difficult or unfamiliar situations. In other words, I ask: How might a writer’s self-regulation strategies correlate with their writing, and how might we help students develop their knowledge about self-regulation in the context of a WAW classroom?

In the rest of this post, I suggest that WAW courses could benefit from self-regulation research to help students in WAW courses write about writing processes. Self-regulation research offers a structure to prompt students to more consciously self-regulate their writing, and it serves as a lens through which to write about writing processes. In the following four sections, I first touch on self-regulation as a theory, then discuss how I’ve drawn on this theory to create a “process log” protocol that prompts students to self-regulation, and I analyze some examples of student logs in order to model an approach to writing about writing processes.

Link to any of the four sections below:

  1. What is self-regulation?
  2. Prompting students to self-regulate: The writing process log
  3. Two Studies: Analyzing process logs as artifacts of self-regulation
  4. Working Conclusions: Using Process Logs to Write about Writing Processes

What is Self-regulation?

Rooted in socio-cognitive theories of writing (Flower) and educational psychology (Bandura), self-regulation of writing refers to the conscious or unconscious processes that individuals use to monitor and manage thoughts, feelings, and practices in order to pursue goals (Pintrich; Zimmerman).

Socio-cognitive theories of self-regulation (Zimmerman & Risemberg) often differentiate among three dimensions:

  1. A writer develops motives and goals for writing;
  2. A writer implements a set of practices for making progress; and
  3. A writer self-evaluates and reacts to progress as it unfolds.

While sometimes presented linearly, these dimensions operate recursively as part of the rhetorical context of writing. Motives, goal-setting, writing practices, and self-reflection each inform the other. For example, the faculty member working on a manuscript who sets a laundry load to interrupt her typing deliberately builds in opportunities to self-regulate.

This theory of self-regulation has informed how I’ve prompted students to self-regulate on their own writing. In addition, I’ve used this theory as a lens to identify and interpret patterns of self-regulation reflected in student logs.

Prompting students to self-regulate: The writing process log

To help students recognize and develop their self-regulation practices, I have been asking students to keep a “process log.” The process log consists of a series of short-answer questions that prompt students to reflect on their writing process (Li; Riazi; Segev-Miller). 

There is a rich body of scholarship on self-regulation of writing that spans K-12, post-secondary, and graduate levels (e.g. Harris and Graham; Negretti and Mezek; Castelló et al.). Self-regulation plays a key role in a writer’s expertise (Beaufort & Iñesta), and teaching students self-regulation strategies can help a diverse range of students in grades 2-12 develop the quality of their writing (Harris and Graham).

Instead of teaching students explicit strategies, the process log allows self-regulation to emerge more organically as students compose. 

The kind of log I ask students to keep uses a series of questions that turn a writer’s attention to setting goals, monitoring, and evaluating progress (Figure 1). Thus far, while some students occasionally see this as “busy-work,” many have told me they find these questions helpful for writing, especially when they feel “stuck.”

Figure 1. Process log questions used to prompt students to self-regulate their writing process.

Once completed, the logs provide a fascinating window into the challenges that emerge for students and the strategies they use to cope.

Granted, the process log, like any in-process protocol, is not without its limitations. A student’s self-regulation practices are already altered from what they might have been by responding to the log entry questions. Like an iceberg, there is always more going on beneath the surface that is left unarticulated.

Despite their limitations, process log entries offer evidence of self-regulation in action, which can help us learn about writers from different backgrounds, contexts and the writing practices they use at a particular time and place. In other words, it is the similarities and differences in student responses to log questions that I find most interesting.

Two Studies: Analyzing process logs as artifacts of self-regulation

Study 1: Comparing self-regulation strategies among student writers

In mid-2010s, I compared process logs from four graduate students enrolled in a seminar on writing center research (Roderick 2019). This seminar was part of the students’ training to work as a tutor in the university writing center. As part of the seminar, each student was assigned to write a research proposal that dealt with an issue relevant to research on writing centers. Throughout the project, they recorded process logs, and I wanted to see what self-regulation strategies they used and how those strategies correlated with the writing they produced.

The comparison revealed patterns of goal-setting and problem-solving that appeared to align with their success on the project. Here is one example of self-regulation strategies that emerged in the two graduate students whose final drafts were characterized as most successful (names are pseudonyms).

 [My paper is] kind of like in chunks. The sources are not integrated very well. And I also am struggling to figure out like, is prosody its own section or should it be part of the section about the importance of intonation in general? (Kara)

I have this feeling that I do not trust my writing, because if I’m understanding it more as I’m writing about it, that means my draft is probably going to reflect someone who’s thinking and learning as opposed to delivering information. So, maybe its writer-based prose and I have not yet moved to reader-based prose. (Connor)

Each of these writers responds to a challenge by developing new goals. In addition, both of the most successful students reported the project helped them develop their knowledge about writing. In contrast, the two writers who had less success either glossed over the difficulties or vented on the difficulty without appearing to overcome it.

While the above comparisons places the emphasis on writers and their habits, it is also important to understand how these habits might be prompted by contextual factors that emerge at the level of curriculum and assignment.

Study 2: Comparing self-regulation across FYC curricular contexts

More recently, my focus has shifted to explore how context might be “intertwined” in students’ self-regulation strategies (Negretti). To do so, I am comparing logs from students enrolled in two different FYC curricula. One group whose FYC curricula focuses on composing research that “contributes” to social issues (Charney and Neuwirth). The other group is drawing on personal experience and primary sources to compose a short ethnography (Cook et al.).

By comparing these two groups, I’m looking for patterns in self-regulation that might be unique to each group, and exploring how those patterns might correspond to elements of the curricular context. My more focused questions include:

  • To what extent are patterns of student self-regulation similar or different between institutions and curricular approaches to first-year writing?
  • How might unique patterns of student self-regulation be linked or disparate from the social context of the curriculum?

To pursue these questions, I am comparing process logs from students in two different groups of FYC students, which I refer to as group “ethnography” and “contribution.” The ethnography group includes first-year undergraduates at a small, private teaching-oriented university who have been instructed to use an ethnographic approach (field notes, artifacts, informant interviews) to write about a culture that is accessible yet unfamiliar to them.

In a separate institution and curriculum, the contribution group includes first-year undergraduates at a larger, private research-oriented university, who are instructed to write a thesis-driven argument that “contributes” to a body of sources that represent different perspectives on a contentious social issue.  

I’m hoping these comparisons can teach us more about how pedagogical approaches to FYC encourage or discourage self-regulation practices.

Emerging findings indicate that, compared to the ethnography group, the contribution group set a significantly higher proportion of goals that were multi-layered and hierarchical. These goal hierarchies include goals that are explicitly interdependent, such as when someone says,

 [When planning my research] I was hindered by how broad/well-known “activism” as a term is. I need to start looking for more specific articles, or reevaluate how I’ll obtain a “definition.” (Contribution Log Entry)

In this contribution log entry, the student creates an interdependent goal when they respond to difficulty defining “activism” by realizing they “need to start looking for more specific articles or revaluate” their knowledge about the subject matter. Compared to the ethnography group, the contribution group’s logs explicitly linked goals together occurs more frequently (comprising an average 20% of contribution logs vs. 15% of ethnography logs; p<.05).

Why did contribution group logs mention more interdependent goals? My scope restricts an exhaustive answer. Instead, I want to focus on just one factor: the way sources were involved in in students’ goal-setting.

There’s something interesting in the way contribution group involves sources in their logs. Contribution students’ goals for using sources tend to be more diverse. For instance, students mentioned sources, such as “papers” and “articles” were linked to the following set of interdependent goals:

  1. Contribution students involve sources with goals for “structuring” writing

I think my final structure would not explicitly follow the IMRD nor the problem-solution structure. To figure this out, I will consult all of the example papers we looked at in class and examine the choice of structures in the papers. (Contribution Log Entry)

  • Contribution students involve sources with goals for concept-building

[When planning my research] I was hindered by how broad/well­known “activism” as a term is. I need to start looking for more specific articles, or reevaluate how I’ll obtain a “definition.” (Contribution Log Entry)

  • Contribution students involve sources with goals evaluating knowledge

My hypotheses about the opinions of Greenwald and Simon regarding gun control were also incorrect, so I will have to find a different angle to include them or other readings from class into my topic. (Contribution Log Entry)

The above examples suggest contribution students involved sources as a means to not just develop knowledge about what to write about, but they also used sources to inform their knowledge about the genre expectations relevant to their paper’s “structure.”  

In comparison, ethnography students did not involve sources with goals for structuring their writing, save for one exception. This is surprising since sample student essays from previous semesters were made available for students to reference.

What ethnography students did do is use sources goals for goals to develop knowledge about subject matter.

My goals for this session are to gather all of my artifacts for this project, and to begin analyzing my artifacts so that I can later include them into my paper. (Ethnography, Log Entry)

I also want to make sure that I look over my interviews once again to be able to make sure that I got all the information that I needed out of them and into my writing (Ethnography, Log Entry)

These examples reflect how ethnography students involve sources with learning what to say, such as when gathering “artifacts“ to “include…into my paper” and using “interviews” to get “information…into my writing.” In addition, the terms artifacts and interviews emerge from assignment (and curricula’s) focus on ethnographic methods. In contrast to contribution students, evidence does not suggest a pattern of ethnography students mentioning sources for goals other than to gather and include information in their paper.    

While there is still more to learn here, these initial comparisons begin to highlight examples of how self-regulation strategies are “intertwined” with the social contexts of writing, as Negretti & Mezek put it (30; see also Negretti, 170). For instance, the comparison in study 2 (above) draws attention to the way that expectations around using sources might be involved in students’ goal-setting. While the ethnography group valued sources for their information, the “contribution” group treated sources as part of a conversation, and those students appear more likely to involve sources for goals related to knowledge about subject matter and rhetorical concerns like “structure.” 

It might be tempting to accuse the ethnography curriculum of limiting opportunities for goal setting, particularly when sources are involved. However, the scope of these findings limits attaching a value to the strategies. Instead, the patterns reflected across the logs only help make areas of the curriculum more visible (like how students use sources). Along these lines, a more extensive comparison is needed.

If we did want to encourage more of the students in the ethnography group to use sources for more diverse goals, we might try to set up a conversation to which students are expected to “contribute.” Such a conversation might include reading a selection of ethnographic essays that offer diverse perspectives on a particular culture. Such a dynamic might show students what is being written about the culture they are researching as well as how their writing might sound.


Working Conclusions

When patterns in self-regulation do emerge across an assignment, it can inform how we might adjust the expectations we construct in our assignments and curriculum. Speculating even further, we may find new ways to cultivate curricular contexts that encourage “problem-exploring,” as opposed to “answer-getting” (Wardle).

In addition, students may do well to learn about self-regulation and observe examples of writers demonstrating diverse self-regulation strategies. Learning by observing, has helped undergraduate students overcome obstacles (Rijlaarsdam et al.). What might happen when students observe and compare their own self-regulation practices with each other? Such a question calls on students to write about writing processes.


Ryan Roderick is an Assistant Professor at Husson University in Bangor, ME, where he teaches courses in first-year writing, professional writing, and interpersonal communication. Reach him via email at roderickr@husson.edu.


Works Referenced

Bandura, Albert. “Social Cognitive Theory of Self-Regulation.” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, vol. 50, 1991, pp. 248–87.

Beaufort, Anne, and Anna Inesta. “Author Profiles: Awareness, Competence, and Skills.” Handbook of Writing and Text Production, edited by Eva-Maria Jakobs and Daniel Perrin, Walter de Gruyter Gmbh, 2014, pp. 142–58.

Charney, Davida H., and Christine M. Neuwirth. Having Your Say: Reading and Writing Public Arguments. Pearson Longman, 2006.

Cleary, Michelle Navarre. “Flowing and Freestyling: Learning from Adult Students about Process Knowledge Transfer.” CCC: College Composition and Communication, vol. 64, no. 4, 2013, pp. 661–687.

Cook, Jennifer Susan, et al. “Ethnography as a Way In: Writing Meets Research in First-Year Composition.” Writing & Pedagogy, vol. 3, no. 1, June 2011. Crossref, doi:10.1558/wap.v3i1.17.

Flower, Linda. The Construction of Negotiated Meaning: A Social Cognitive Theory of Writing. Southern Illinois University Press, 1994.

Harris, Karen R., and Steve Graham. “Self-Regulated Strategy Development in Writing: Policy Implications of an Evidence-Based Practice.” Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences, vol. 3, no. 1, Mar. 2016, pp. 77–84. DOI.org (Crossref), doi:10.1177/2372732215624216.

Li, Yongyan. “Undergraduate Students Searching and Reading Web Sources for Writing.” Educational Media International, vol. 49, no. 3, Sept. 2012, pp. 201–15. CrossRef, doi:10.1080/09523987.2012.738013.

Negretti, Raffaella, and Spela Mezek. “Participatory Appropriation as a Pathway to Self-Regulation in Academic Writing: The Case of Three BA Essay Writers in Literature.” Journal of Writing Research, vol. 11, no. vol. 11 issue 1, June 2019, pp. 1–40. DOI.org (Crossref), doi:10.17239/jowr-2019.11.01.01.

Pintrich, Paul R. “A Conceptual Framework for Assessing Motivation and Self-Regulated Learning in College Students.” Educational Psychology Review, vol. 16, no. 4, 2004, pp. 385–407.

Prior, Paul, and Jody Shipka. “Chronotopic Lamination: Tracing the Contours of Literate Activity.” Writing Selves, Writing Societies: Research from Activity Perspectives, 2003, pp. 180–238.

R. Negretti. “Metacognition in Student Academic Writing: A Longitudinal Study of Metacognitive Awareness and Its Relation to Task Perception, Self-Regulation, and Evaluation of Performance.” Written Communication, vol. 29, no. 2, 2012, pp. 142–79, doi:10.1177/0741088312438529.

Riazi, Abdolmehdi. “Acquiring Disciplinary Literacy: A Social-Cognitive Analysis of Text Production and Learning among Iranian Graduate Students of Education.” Journal of Second Language Writing, vol. 6, no. 2, 1997, pp. 105–37, doi:10.1016/S1060-3743(97)90030-8.

Rijlaarsdam, G. C. W., et al. “Observation of Peers in Learning to Write: Practice and Research.” Journal of Writing Research, vol. 1, 2008, pp. 53–83.

Roderick, Ryan. “Self-Regulation and Rhetorical Problem Solving: How Graduate Students Adapt to an Unfamiliar Writing Project.” Written Communication, vol. 36, no. 3, July 2019, pp. 410–36. DOI.org (Crossref), doi:10.1177/0741088319843511.

Segev-Miller, Rachel. “Writing-To-Learn: Conducting A Process Log.” Effective Learning and Teaching of Writing, edited by Gert Rijlaarsdam et al., vol. 14, Springer Netherlands, 2005, pp. 533–46. Crossref, doi:10.1007/978-1-4020-2739-0_36.

Wardle, Elizabeth. “Creative Repurposing for Expansive Learning: Considering ‘Problem-Exploring’ and ‘Answer-Getting’ Dispositions in Individuals and Fields.” Composition Forum, vol. 26, 2012.

Zimmerman, Barry J., and Rafael Risemberg. “Becoming a Self-Regulated Writer: A Social Cognitive Perspective.” Contemporary Educational Psychology, vol. 22, no. 1, 1997, pp. 73–101.

DEADLINE EXTENDED: MAY 4, 11:59 PM CFP CCCC 2018: Writing About Writing Standing Group Panel

Writing About Writing SG

Sponsored Panel:  Call for Proposals

2018 Conference on College Composition and Communication

March 14-27, 2018  // Kansas City, Missouri



Languaging, Laboring, and Transforming

The Writing About Writing (WAW) Standing Group and the WAW Steering Committee invite proposals for the 2018 WAW Sponsored Panel. The sponsored panel is guaranteed to be accepted to the CCCC program when the Standing Group submits it, and we are reaching out to the WAW community to identify potential presenters.

What kind of proposal fits the WAW Sponsored Panel’s goals?

We are interested in interactive panels as well as individual proposals. We are interested in proposals that help us extend the practice and impact of WAW pedagogy or research, particularly proposals authored and co-authored by new and emerging scholars in WAW. We are also hoping to include panels reporting on ongoing research into WAW programs and courses.  We invite proposals that embrace the 2018 conference theme of languaging, laboring, and transforming.

How will the WAW Sponsored Panel selected proposals be submitted to CCCC?

Sponsored Panels will be submitted by the WAW Sponsored Panel Committee through the regular CCCC proposal system, which is why we are asking for the same information as the online program proposal system.

To be considered for the WAW Sponsored Panel, proposals must be received before April 30 at 11:59pm.  Please send your proposal and relevant presenter/panel information through this form.

To be considered for the Sponsored Panel, please follow 4Cs guidelines when writing your proposal. In 1500 characters (including spaces) or 7000 characters (including spaces) for panel proposals, briefly describe the focus and purpose of your WAW presentation.

Be sure that your proposal considers the conference themes and the five main criteria as listed on the guidelines page: 1) how the proposal is situated in the field, 2) its main focus, 3) what is innovative and new, 4) how it is audience-oriented and/or transformative to a wide Cs audience, and 5) how it adds new or underrepresented voices or texture to the discussion.

This year, according to Program Chair Asao Inoue, there are no clusters, only hashtags.  All proposals need to have one to three  hashtags.  The hashtags are:

  • Pedagogy (#Pedagogy)
  •  Basic Writing (#BW)
  • Assessment (#Assess)
  • Rhetoric (#Rhetoric)
  • History (#History)
  • Technology (#Tech)
  • Language (#Language)
  • Professional Technical Writing (#PTW)
  • Writing Program Administration (#WPA)
  • Theory (#Theory)
  • Public, Civic, and Community writing (#Community)
  • Creative Writing (#Creativewriting)

If you have questions and/or concerns, feel free to email Lisa Tremain at:  lisa.tremain@humboldt.edu.


Writing About Writing and Transfer Sessions at the 2017 CCCCs

I compiled a list of WAW sessions (Thurs-Sat.) at the CCCC’s and combined it with Kathleen Yancey’s Writing Across Contexts list of Transfer sessions. Please feel to check it out!


WAW Sessions


Thursday (3/16)


A.45 What Is Writing Studies Made of?

Tackling questions of structures and boundaries of the field: presenters explore disciplinary futures growing out of earlier alliances.

D 140

Speakers: Peter Campbell, University of Pittsburgh,

John Dunn, Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti,

Cory Holding, University of Pittsburgh,

Bob Samuels, University of California, Santa Barbara, “Contingent Labor, Writing Studies, and Writing about Writing”


C.52 Content Conflict: An Argument for Alternative Approaches to “Writing about Writing”

An argument that supports the rhetorical dexterity of WAW but proposes alternative content that more fully considers the needs of students.

B 115


Erin Daugherty, University of Arkansas, “Writing Past Conflict, Writing for Your World”

Logan Hilliard, University of Arkansas, “Creatively Composing: Engaged Liberation in First-Year Composition”

Sam Morris, University of Arkansas, “Gladdening the Process: Voice, Social Identity, and Young Adult Literature”

Friday (3/17)    


I.49 Creating a Transferable Sense of a Writing Self: Findings from a Longitudinal Study of WAW

A longitudinal study of learning transfer from writing-about-writing courses shows transfer as a function of a writer’s sense of self.

F 151


Doug Downs, Montana State University, Bozeman, “Transfer or Transformation? Taking New Selves to New Sites of Writing”

Kim Hoover, University of Pittsburgh, “Kinds of Consciousness: Affect, Metacognition, and Cosmic Minds?” Miles Nolte, Montana State University, Bozeman, “Watch Out for That Exigence: What Military and Commercial Vessel Training Might Demonstrate about Facilitating Student Engagement in FYC”

Mark Schlenz, Montana State University, Bozeman, “Actualizing Selves in Universes of Discourse: Creativity, Identity, and Exigence in Metacognitive Transfer”


J.04 Qualitative Studies of Writing about Writing: Classrooms, Programs, and Trends

(WAW Sponsored Session)

Three qualitative studies of writing about writing focusing on an individual teacher, a program, and trends in US and Canadian pedagogy.

C 124


Rebecca Babcock, University of Texas Permian Basin, Odessa, “Conceptions of WAW: A Qualitative Study”

Cynthia Cochran, Illinois College, “Conceptions of WAW: A Qualitative Study”

Lena Harper, Brigham Young University, “Contextualizing Contrasting Perceptions of WAW Failure: A Case Study of a Stand-Alone WAWFYC Course”

Samuel Stinson, Ohio University, Athens, “Writing-about-Writing and Post-Departmental Support”

David Stock, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT, “Contextualizing Contrasting Perceptions of WAW Failure: A Case Study of a StandAlone WAW-FYC Course”

Respondent: Doug Downs, Montana State University, Bozeman


K.10 Writing about Writing and Teaching for Transfer

Speakers consider the efficacy of Writing about Writing in multiple venues and genres.

A 103


Veronica Flanagan, University of California, Santa Cruz, “Teaching First-Year Composition in a College Core Course”

Joel Heng Hartse, Simon Fraser University, “Implementing a Writingabout-Writing Approach in a High-Stakes Foundational Writing Course”

Ariel Zepeda, California State University, San Bernardino, “Reimagining Transfer through Multimodal Re-mediation”


K.37 What’s New in WAW Is WA(M)W! Fostering Adaptive Transfer through Writing about Multilingual Writing

Invites consideration of Writing about Multilingual Writing as an innovative approach to language difference in transfer studies.

B 115


Lindsey Ives, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Katherine Silvester, Indiana University, Bloomington

Emily Simnitt, University of Oregon


FSIG.11 Writing about Writing Development Standing Group Meeting

The WAW Standing Group’s meeting conducts the group’s business and lets members socialize and coordinate efforts in WAW pedagogy and research.

C 126

Chair: Doug Downs, Montana State University, Bozeman

Speaker: Andrea Olinger, University of Louisville

Saturday (3/18)


L.27 Genre and Transfer

Presenters focus on graduate teaching assistant (GTA) training and understanding diverse genre approaches to teaching.

A 104


Melissa Bugdal, University of Connecticut, Storrs, “The Rhetorical Situation and Transfer of Writing Knowledge from Basic Writing to Writing in the Disciplines”

Katherine Fredlund, University of Memphis, “Writing about Writing Courses and the Graduate Teaching Assistant: Cultivating Disciplinary Understanding in a Diverse English Department”

Edrees Nawabi, Washington State University, “I Know You Are but What Am I? Engaging and Developing Students’ Sense of ‘Good Humor’”

Kristen Nielsen, Boston University, “Beyond the Essay, Beyond Montaigne: Reenvisioning Writing Conventions and Assignments”

2a. Transfer Sessions (From K. Yancey’s Writing Across Contexts blog)

Thursday (3/16)

A.14  Passion Cultivates Long-Term Transfer 

How does passion transfer to long-term literate habits? A theoretical explanation grounded on empirical research.



Barbara George, Kent State University

Melody Gustafson, Kent State University

Uma Krishnan, Kent State University

A.17 Tracing Transfer: Examining Teaching for Transfer in Three Curricular Sites

This panel presents the preliminary findings of a multi-institutional, multisite research project: the Transfer of Transfer Project.

C 123


Matt Davis, University of Massachusetts, Boston

Liane Robertson, William Paterson University

Joyce R. Walker, Illinois State University, Normal

Respondent: Kathleen Blake Yancey, Florida State University

B.16 Transitions and Transfers in Technical and Professional Communities

Explorations of transfer and transitioning into the workplace.



Brian Fitzpatrick, George Mason University, “Didn’t Get the Memo: Refining Professional Writing Transfer Strategies through the Study of Authentic Writing Spaces”

Jessica McCaughey, The George Washington University, “Didn’t Get the Memo: Refining Professional Writing Transfer Strategies through the Study of Authentic Writing Spaces”

CP Moreau, Carnegie Mellon University, “From College to the Cubicle: A Multiple-Voiced Inquiry into the Literate Practices of Recent College Graduates Entering the Professional Workplace”

Lisa Sperber, University of California, Davis, “Using Threshold Concepts in Writing in the Sciences and Health Sciences”

C.15 What Transfers? Developing Research Instruments to Assess Whether Comparative Genre Analysis Helps Students Transfer Rhetorical Knowledge across Contexts

Evaluating survey instruments designed to assess whether students are prepared to transfer rhetorical knowledge from FYC to future academic work.



Ana Cooke, Carnegie Mellon University, “‘Troubling’ Comparative Genre Analysis”

Danielle Wetzel, Carnegie Mellon University, “Do Students Perceive Comparative Genre Analysis as a Transferable Method?”Laura Wilder, University at Albany, SUNY, “Describing the Signposts That Signal Positive Transfer”

Joanna Wolfe, Carnegie Mellon University, “Does Comparative Genre Analysis Prepare Students to Analyze Unfamiliar Writing Prompts?”

E.30 Students as “Agents of Integration” and Social Change: Cultivating Transfer between the Classroom and Community 

Through studies of students’ co- and extracurricular community engagement, we explore ways to support transfer beyond classroom contexts.

Portland Ballroom 258


Sarah Hart Micke, University of Denver, “Students Teaching Writing: Cultivating Transfer in a Community Literacy Organization”

Megan Kelly, University of Denver, “Lessons from the ‘Campaign Toolbox’: What We Can Learn about Composition from Student Activist Organizations”

Heather Martin, University of Denver, “Self-Directed Service in the Composition Classroom: Opportunities for Agency and Transfer”

TSIG.11 Teaching for Transfer (TFT) SIG 

In this Special Interest Group session, we’ll introduce TFT quickly before breaking into small sessions addressing several issues, including misconceptions about TFT; TFT in FYC; TFT in upper-level writing courses; and specific adaptations to the TFT curriculum. In addition, we’ll forecast other opportunities to learn about TFT.


SpeakerKathleen Blake Yancey, Florida State University

Friday (3/17)

F.33 Teaching for Transfer beyond First-Year Composition: Professional and Business Writing

Presenters consider using teaching for transfer beyond first-year writing.



Jann Harris, University of Nevada, Reno, “Remixing the Old and the New: Cultivating the TFT Metaphor”

Patricia Jenkins, University of Alaska Anchorage, “Applying TFT to an Upper-Division Professional Writing Course: Broadening the Curricular Reach”

Cynthia Johnson, Miami University, “Broadening the Transfer Landscape: Cultivating Transfer-Focused Writing Curricula beyond Composition Programs”

Nicole Varty, Wayne State University, “Flexible Writing in Literate Ecologies: A Longitudinal Study of Student Writing Knowledge Transfer into, during, and after First-Year Writing”

F.51 Cultivating Transfer with the Teaching-for-Transfer Writing Curriculum: A National Multi-Institutional Study

This panel shares findings from a two-year and four-year college multiinstitutional study on the efficacy of the Teaching for Transfer curriculum.


Speakers: Sonja Andrus, University of Cincinnati/Blue Ash College, OH

Sharon Mitchler, Centralia College

Tonya Ritola, University of California Santa Cruz

Kara Taczak, University of Denver

Howard Tinberg, Bristol Community College

G.39 Cultivating Knowledge to Foster Program Development: Utilizing Data from a Five-Year Study of a Large Advanced Writing Program

The panel discusses a survey of more than 8,500 students in advanced writing courses, looking at issues of transfer, diversity, and WPA awareness.


Friday, 9:30–10:45 a.m.

Speakers: Dana Ferris, University of California, Davis

Hogan Hayes, California State University, Sacramento

Sean McDonnell, University of California, Davis

H.13 Change Agents in the Workplace: How MA Graduates Transfer Rhetorical Knowledge into Action

We will show how our MA alumni use the transfer of rhetorical and pedagogical knowledge as change agents in their workplaces.


Chair: Nancy Mack, Wright State University

Speakers: Melissa Faulkner, Cedarville University, “One MA Alum’s Experiences in University and Community Contexts”

Nancy Mack, Wright State University, “What Our MA Alumni Use Every Day: Transfer of Curricular Values”

David Seitz, Wright State University, “The Transfer of Rhetorical Knowledge to Create Workplace Change”

H.32 Sharing Threshold Concepts as the Foundation for Integrated Curricula, Collaborative Assessment, and Learning Transfer across Library-Writing Partnerships

IRB-approved study exploring co-teaching of shared threshold concepts for long-term transfer across writing programs and library sessions.


Speakers: Cooper Day, Texas State University

Brittney Johnson, St. Edward’s University

Moriah McCracken, St. Edward’s University

I.49 Creating a Transferable Sense of a Writing Self: Findings from a Longitudinal Study of WAW

A longitudinal study of learning transfer from writing-about-writing courses shows transfer as a function of a writer’s sense of self.


Chair: Doug Downs, Montana State University, Bozeman

Speakers: Doug Downs, Montana State University, Bozeman, “Transfer or Transformation? Taking New Selves to New Sites of Writing”

Kim Hoover, University of Pittsburgh, “Kinds of Consciousness: Affect, Metacognition, and Cosmic Minds?”

Miles Nolte, Montana State University, Bozeman, “Watch Out for That Exigence: What Military and Commercial Vessel Training Might Demonstrate about Facilitating Student Engagement in FYC”

Mark Schlenz, Montana State University, Bozeman, “Actualizing Selves in Universes of Discourse: Creativity, Identity, and Exigence in Metacognitive Transfer”

J.12 Transfer, Habits of Mind, and Threshold Concepts: Trends Redefining the Fields

Participants describe lines of inquiry that are becoming increasingly important to understanding student writing for the purposes of pedagogical, programmatic, and institutional accountability.


Chair: Kelsie Hope Walker, University of Arkansas at Little Rock

Speakers: Christopher Blankenship, Salt Lake Community College, “The Frame and the Foil: Integrating Threshold Concepts and Outcomes Assessment in First-Year Composition”

Meghan Dykema, Florida State University, “Communicating Disciplinary Knowledge through Accreditation-Based Writing and Learning Initiatives”

J.24 Cultivating (Meta)Transfer: Changing Individual, Programmatic, and Institutional Dispositions through a Revisioning of Stretch

Revisiting stretch with reflections on instructor and institutional dispositions, text analysis, and autoethnographic case studies.


Chair: Lisa Tremain, Humboldt State University, “Theoretical Implications of Meta-Transfer”

Speakers: Marianne Ahokas, Humboldt State University, “Disposition: It’s Not Just for Students Anymore”

Sarah Ben-Zvi, Humboldt State University, “In the Process of Transformation: Planning Our Future Research and Practice”

Kerry Marsden, Humboldt State University, “Institutional Dispositions: When the Deficit Model Is Transferred to Stretch”

Erin Sullivan, Humboldt State University, “Harnessing Constraint: How Disappointment and Frustration Fueled Our Reflection and Desire for Transformation”

K.10 Writing about Writing and Teaching for Transfer

Speakers consider the efficacy of Writing about Writing in multiple venues and genres.


Chair: Kenlea Pebbles, Michigan State University

Speakers: Veronica Flanagan, University of California, Santa Cruz, “Teaching First-Year Composition in a College Core Course”

Joel Heng Hartse, Simon Fraser University, “Implementing a Writingabout-Writing Approach in a High-Stakes Foundational Writing Course”

Ariel Zepeda, California State University, San Bernardino, “Reimagining Transfer through Multimodal Re-mediation”

K.14 Transfer’s Evolution: Changing Our Terms, Interrogating Our Methodologies for Studying Transfer

A roundtable discussion about the changing terms for naming and methodologies for researching transfer.

Portland Ballroom 258

Chair: Michael-John DePalma, Baylor University, Waco, Texas

Speakers: Anis Bawarshi, University of Washington, Seattle

Dan Fraizer, Springfield College, MA

Kali Mobley, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Mary Jo Reiff, University of Kansas, Lawrence

Jeffrey Ringer, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Alisa Russell, University of Kansas, Lawrence

K.17 Emergent Transfer in Action: Researching Transfer of Learning in Writing Centers

This panel will engage attendees in extended conversation to analyze potential moments of transfer in writing center consultations.


Speakers: R. Mark Hall, University of Central Florida

Bradley Hughes, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Rebecca Nowacek, Marquette University

Saturday (3/18)

L.27 Genre and Transfer

Presenters focus on graduate teaching assistant (GTA) training and understanding diverse genre approaches to teaching.


Chair: Denisha Harris, California State University, San Bernardino

Speakers: Melissa Bugdal, University of Connecticut, Storrs, “The Rhetorical Situation and Transfer of Writing Knowledge from Basic Writing to Writing in the Disciplines”

Katherine Fredlund, University of Memphis, “Writing about Writing Courses and the Graduate Teaching Assistant: Cultivating Disciplinary Understanding in a Diverse English Department”

Edrees Nawabi, Washington State University, “I Know You Are but What Am I? Engaging and Developing Students’ Sense of ‘Good Humor’”

Kristen Nielsen, Boston University, “Beyond the Essay, Beyond Montaigne: Reenvisioning Writing Conventions and Assignments”

Cultivating Change across Student Contexts: Transfer across Secondary and Postsecondary Composition Classrooms

This panel approaches long-term transfer skills across several levels of composition: early and late secondary, first year, and program-wide.


Chair: Brandon Abdon, The Advanced Placement Program, “Necessity of Transfer across Contexts”

Saturday, 10:45 a.m.–12:00 p.m.

Speakers: Sheila Carter-Tod, Virginia Tech, “Weaving University Writing Program Outcomes into High School Writing Curricula”

Martha Davis, Norwalk High School, “The High School Side of a High School and College Collaboration”

John Golden, Portland Public Schools, “Alignment of Composition and Analysis Skills from High School to Higher Ed”

John Marshall, Riverpoint Academy, “Collaborating with ‘Beyond High School’ Stakeholders for Transfer of Composition Skills”

Mary Trachsel, University of Iowa, “The College Side of a High School and College Collaboration”

L.43 Bridging the Gap: Cultivating the Capacity to Create Transfer between High School Writing and FYW

This roundtable of high school and college teachers answers the question: how can we bridge the gap between high school and college writing?

Portland Ballroom 254

Speakers: Brianna Cline, Lake City High School

Caroline Hall, University of Idaho

Kirsten Pomerantz, Lake City High School

Gwen Reed, Lake City High School

Krystal Wu, Catlin Gabel, Portland, OR

Roundtable Leader: Barbara Kirchmeier, University of Idaho, Moscow

M.33 Video Pedagogy and Teaching for Transfer across Media

This panel investigates the role of video composition in teaching for transfer across assignments in first-year writing.


Speakers: Angela Berkley, University of Michigan, “Cultivating Real Audiences: From Viewers to Readers”

Catherine Jostock, Oakland University, “Research into Meaning: Primary Research in Video Composition and Its Relation to Problem Solving, Organization, and Self-Awareness”

Lauren Rinke, Oakland University, “Visual Analysis and Investigation: Cementing Rhetorical Appeals and ‘Real Life’ through Video Composing”

Crystal VanKooten, Oakland University, “Using Interviews and Observations to Look for Transfer across Media”table of high school and college teachers answers the question: