The Journal of Basic Writing at Forty: Risk, Affect, and Materiality in the Shaping of a Field, the 2015 CBW Featured CCCC Session

If you’re attending CCCC, please be sure to attend the session H.07, “The Journal of Basic Writing at Forty: Risk, Affect, and Materiality in the Shaping of a Field” with Hope Parisi, Steve Lamos, Susan Naomi Bernstein and Cheryl Smith. The Council on Basic Writing is proudly sponsoring this panel as a panel that represents our mission, our scholarship, and our pedagogy. And this session promises to be a great one with four leaders in the field of Basic Writing scholarship all discussing the import of Basic Writing Scholarship. Please click on this link to read the abstracts. The panel takes place on Friday between 11-12:15 in Room 1 of the Tampa Convention Center.

This is the first year that CCCC is using panels sponsored by standing groups. As one of the longest standing groups, the CBW would like to encourage CCCC to continue allowing groups to sponsor panels as a way of impacting the conference program. So, to help us do that, we would like to have a great turnout at this panel to show CCCC the strength of our community. I look forward to seeing you there.

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Presenting the CBW Pre-Conference Workshop, 2015

Risky Relationships in Placement, Teaching and the Professional Organization
Council on Basic Writing Pre-Conference Workshop 2015

For our 2015 preconvention workshop, the Council on Basic Writing answers CCCCs’ thematic call to rethink BW practice and policy and to share stories of various efforts at trying something new. What happens, for example, when we reach outside of BW and composition scholarship to help inform the design of writing programs that strive to be more democratic and respectful of language diversity? How can BW faculty better utilize campus and community resources, as well as resources from unexpected and surprising places to help balance their lives outside of school with the often demanding challenges of being mentor and teacher to students with equally complex lives? In what ways can we rethink writing placement methods in order to increase access to multilingual and other culturally and racially diverse students? These questions will guide the CBW workshop as we examine the risks and rewards of BW relationships in writing placement, in student and instructor lives, and in our professional organizations.

9:00 a.m. Welcome
CBW Co-Chairs:
Sugie Goen-Salter, San Francisco State University
Michael D. Hill, Henry Ford College

9:15-10:15 a.m.
The 2014 Innovation Award for Teaching of Basic Writing
Session Chair: Sugie Goen-Salter, San Francisco State University

Presenters: Candace Zepeda, Our Lady of the Lake University; Mike Lueker, Our Lady of the Lake University; Thomas McBryde, Our Lady of the Lake University; David Hale, Our Lady of the Lake University

Almost 40 years ago, when Mina Shaughnessy introduced Errors and Expectations, she challenged instructors to look beyond the errors of students’ work by studying their linguistic (and cultural) identity. Nearly four decades later, Gregory Shafer questions what we have learned from Shaughnessy and if instructors (and even writing programs) “respect the linguistic competence that students possess.” Shafer proposes that if the goal of current basic writing scholarship is to “foster a writing that is democratic, that expands literacies to authentic contexts and cultivates a truly creative spirit, a paradigm shift is clearly in order and must begin with the way we see dialects and language diversity and the way we handle them in the placement process.” The paradigm shift Shafer suggests is a rather ambitious vision, but offers a vibrant description of the QUEST First-Year Writing Program at Our Lady of the Lake University. QUEST is an innovative curriculum that offers a democratic, hospitable and progressive writing curriculum that responds to the needs of our student population. OLLU is a Hispanic Serving Institution that serves a considerable amount of first-generation, Latin@ and low-income students with more than 86% historically placing into developmental courses. The QUEST model is a product of risk-taking, grounding our theoretical and pedagogical design using scholarship from outside basic writing and composition studies. As recipients for the 2014 Inny Award, our panel invites an interactive workshop with audience members where we will cover areas related to program and theoretical design, pedagogical practices, assessment measures, and faculty support. Audience members will be encouraged to participate in discussion and with workshop activities.

10:30-11:30 a.m.
The Risks and Rewards of Complex Lives: Balancing Basic Writing with Instructor and Student Lives
Roundtable Chair: Marisa Klages-Bombich, LaGuardia Community College

Participants: Candace Epps-Robertson, Michigan State University; Marcia Buell, Northeastern Illinois University; Dawn Lombardi, The University of Akron; Annie Del Principe, Kingsborough Community College, CUNY; Elaine M. Jolayemi, Ivy Tech Indianapolis; Daniel Cleary, Lorain County Community College; Jason Evans, Prairie State College; Kerry Lane, Joliet Junior College; Marcea Sible, Hawkeye Community College

Teaching is hard work, and unlike careers that get to stay in the office, teaching often comes home with us- not only in the form of grading and class preparation but also in the way that the often complex lives of our basic writing students find their ways into our own narratives as instructors. Figuring out how to balance our roles as teachers and mentors (available to students for guidance and assistance), our scholarly selves (with responsibilities for publishing and institutional service) and our lives as caretakers (parents, elders, our own illnesses) is ultimately complex and requires careful navigation. These problems seems particularly relevant in the field of composition and rhetoric, where grading essays often takes significantly longer than grading multiple choice exams, and where one-to-one conferences on student papers often elicits discussions about issues in students’ personal and academic lives. This roundtable will focus on helping faculty think through the challenges on balancing their lives, and student lives while teaching Basic Writing. We will have a number of co-leaders facilitate discussions on various issues in our classrooms and lives including: Utilizing Resources on Campus and in the Community, Finding Mentors and Support in Unexpected Places, and Learning from Our Students.

11:30-12:30 p.m.
Best Practices in Placement and Pedagogy: Progressive Policy Statements by the BW Community
Presenter: William Lalicker, West Chester University of Pennsylvania

Basic writing still, in too many sites, enacts a system of gatekeeping, where risk is in difference and reward resides in the normative. Placement policies broadcast institutional values: how we sort students may express old prejudices, or may transform our institutions into progressive communities of learners. Moreover, placement presages pedagogy. In the capstone segment of our workshop, the facilitator will first invite all workshop participants to contribute to the creation of a policy statement that establishes principles for placement policies that can respect difference, can recognize the generative intersections of culture and voice and identity, and can honor the strengths of developing student writers by inviting them into the academic conversation. Then this segment will invite participants to apply these progressive placement principles, using these values to create a statement of best pedagogical practices in basic writing. The result will be two policy statements, drafted by the workshop that will integrate basic writing placement and pedagogy, scaffolding more humanistic, pluralistic, and welcoming basic writing programs for all developing student writers.

12:30-1:30 p.m. Lunch

Afternoon Joint Session with CBW and TYCA

1:30-2:30 p.m.
Writing Placement that Risks the Academy: Rethinking Ways of Access and the Reward of First-Year Writing
Keynote Address: Asao Inoue, University of Washington, Tacoma

This keynote will discuss ways to rethink writing placement methods, procedures, validation, and outcomes in order to address the increasingly diverse students entering first-year writing programs. Most placement systems are designed with the assumption that the placement decision must come from a measurement of student writing ability, coming perhaps from a test score, a timed writing exam decision, or even a directed self-placement that asks students to perform writing tasks or self-assessments of some sort. This keynote address will question two assumptions that work in all these placement models: (1) the nature of the writing construct against which readers or raters measure student performances (e.g. as a white construct, as a transactive rhetorical construct); and (2) the nature of the kinds of judgments needed to make a placement (e.g. judgments of cognitive dimensions of writing that seem to be associated with writing “quality” or success in first-year writing courses). This keynote will ask the question: How do we increase access to multilingual and other culturally and racially diverse students in our writing programs? The larger purpose of this discussion, beyond rethinking writing placement, is to suggest a rethinking of the nature of the academic discourse(s) we expect in the academy.

2:30-3:30 p.m.
Situated Placement: The Rewards of Developing Placement Processes

Participants: Heidi Estrem, Boise State University, Dawn Shepherd, Boise State University; Leigh Jonaitis, Bergen Community College

This afternoon roundtable discussion will focus on placement. Our roundtable discussants represent a range of institutions (doctoral institution, regional campus, and two-year colleges), and all speakers have developed new placement processes at their institutions. The first group of speakers will describe how a new course matching process at their doctoral institution mediates students’ understandings of college writing courses prior to enrollment and encourages student self-efficacy while also increasing retention across all first-year writing courses. The second speaker will share how her regional campus used a state mandate to eliminate “remedial” education as leverage to develop a new basic writing curriculum and a guided self-placement process that led to better outcomes and increased satisfaction for instructors and students. The final speaker will discuss the challenges of placement at a two-year college and how her program has used its placement process to respond to student needs.

3:45-5:00 p.m.
The Rewards of Collaboration Between TYCA and CBW
Session Chairs: Michael D. Hill, Henry Ford College and Suzanne Labadie, Oakland Community College

Roundtable discussants will facilitate collaboration between CBW and TYCA attendees around research in our field. The goal of this session of the workshop will be to determine the key areas of crossover in our organizations where research needs exist, and to develop professional communities of instructors to support, produce, and participate in work in these particular areas. Attendees will be actively engaged in this session through conversation, brainstorming, and planning future collaborative work around key topics, such as placement, retention, acceleration, critical thinking, rigor, and changing expectations in college-level writing.
And don’t forget to join us for the CBW SIG on Thursday night to congratulate Boise State’s PLUS: ‪Projecting Learning, Understanding Success‬, winner of the 2015 Innovations in Basic Writing Award. Our SIG is located in Marriott, Grand Ballroom C, Level Two from 6:30-7:30 pm.‬‬

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New Resources for a Fresh Start to Your New Semester!

Check out the ever evolving CBW Resource Share Site for new ideas for a new semester! Thanks Elizabeth Baldridge!

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Submitted to CCCC 2015? We want your info!

Happy Labor Day Colleagues,

The Council on Basic Writing would like to start to get a handle on how BW will be represented at CCCC in 2015. If you had a paper, panel, or roundtable accepted at CCCC that will have a primary focus on BW, can you please send me an email? In your email, please include your session title and any relevant abstracts.

Our purposes in collecting this information is two-fold. First, we would like to start thinking about how we might promote BW panels ahead of CCCC in order to encourage robust participation both by CBW members and by the larger CCCC community. Second, we would like to start considering how and why BW panels are accepted by the larger CCC organization in order to consider how we might foster more BW scholarship at CCCC.

Please send me your acceptance information by September 15. You can get my email address on the listserv or on the CBW blog (see “Board” info) or you can IM me on FB. At this time, please send this information to just me so that we do not burden the list with these announcements. In the future, we will send out another email asking you if you’d like to be included in the BW session pamphlet that we create for CCCC. As CCCC approaches, we will also encourage you to advertise your sessions on the email list and on our FB page.

In solidarity,
Mike, Co-Chair of the CBW Executive Board

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CBW 2014, Complete Schedule

Please join us for the CBW 2014 Pre-Conference Workshop 

19 March 2014 at the CCCC National Convention!

Open Futures? Basic Writing, Access, and Technology

Council on Basic Writing Pre-Conference Workshop 2014

So often, technology is touted as the promise and answer to everything. We are told that technology makes everything easier, simpler, and more accessible. But when we consider technology and Basic Writing, is that true? Does technology provide open access for our students to achieve their educational goals, moving from developmental writing courses through graduation? What is the impact of technology on basic writing classrooms today? What are the political consequences of eschewing digital pedagogies? Of adopting them? Who controls these technologies? What are the implications of who creates and controls them? What does responsible basic writing pedagogy look like in a digital age? This pre-conference workshop will work to explore the possibilities, realities, and restrictions of technology and basic writing pedagogies.

9:00 a.m. Welcome

Session Chair: Sugie Goen-Salter, San Francisco State University

9:15-10:00 a.m. The 2013 Innovation Award for Teaching of Basic Writing

Session Chair: Sugie Goen-Salter, San Francisco State University

Presenters: Anne-Marie Hall, University of Arizona; Aimee C. Mapes, University of Arizona; and Christopher Minnix, University of Alabama at Birmingham

The University of Arizona Writing Program will discuss the “Adapted Studio Model” for basic writing (BW) in a two-part presentation. First, we will define our curricular innovation as an adaptation of a variety of successful approaches in the field. Our reinterpretation blends strategies from a studio model, an intensive model, and the accelerated learning program with an emphasis on increasing student and instructor interaction. Importantly, adapted studio model contributes to two major goals: fostering expansive student learning and improving retention of students at higher risk of dropping out. The presentation will overview institutional exigencies for improving BW instruction in our program and then outline the success and portability of the adapted studio model. Workshop participants will learn about:

•     intricacies of course enrollment and scheduling, including credits and implications for students and instructors,

•     professional development for instructors in a weekly teacher collaborative,

•     scope and sequence of the composition course,

•     integration of the studio into the composition course,

•     and student retention.

At The University of Arizona, this model has been successful at increasing retention of underprepared writers from 46% under the traditional “extra remedial course” model to 81%. We contend that the combination of the composition course with the studio accomplishes a “slowing down” of the pace of the curriculum in a way that draws out the metacognitive aspects of writing for students. The additional face-to-face time with instructors and extra instructional support effectively closes the gap between academically underprepared students and students whose high school experiences have geared them toward success in college.

The second part of the session will focus on studio curriculum, emphasizing the workshop as a space where instructors can teach to their strengths related to writing and where students can address what they feel are weaknesses. Typically, studio workshop offers opportunities for stronger personal engagement. We will demonstrate how creating a more flexible environment for reflection through the studio model also sustains more enriching interactions between students and faculty. In studio, students participate in a range of craft lessons. We will feature three exemplary studio lessons on invention, the intersection of sound and meaning in language, and a thesis workshop.

10:00-12:00 noon: Basic Writing, Literacy Narratives, and the Collective Power of 2.0 Projects 

Keynote Address by Cynthia Selfe, The Ohio State University

Session Chair: Lynn Reid, Fairleigh Dickinson University

In this session, Selfe explores ways in which Basic Writing teachers/scholars can multiply and amplify their individual efforts by undertaking 2.0 projects (Anderson, 2007; O’Reilly, 2005) that leverage the power of collaboration and digital expression.  Even as Basic Writing faculty struggle with heavy work loads, minimal staff, and a lack of material resources, they can help build 2.0 projects and, perhaps more importantly, make these projects pay off in their own institutions, colleges, and/or departments.

As part of her talk, Selfe will show autobiographical literacy stories that undergraduate students have contributed to the Digital Archives of Literacy Narratives (DALN) and explore what kinds of work these accounts can accomplish for both teachers and coaches. She will also preview a new project of “digital curated exhibits,” Stories That Speak to Us, that she is undertaking with colleagues Scott L. DeWitt and H. Lewis Ulman and fellow teacher/scholars from across the U.S.

12:00-1:30 p.m. Technology Café and Interactive, Digital Poster Session (and Lunch)

Session Chair: Lynn Reid, Fairleigh Dickinson University

This technology café asks basic writing educators to share local models for successful integration of technology into the Basic Writing classroom. Basic Writing faculty from two- and four-year institutions will showcase technologies and how they are used in practical lessons. Participants will have the opportunity to hear about the practical application of a new technology in the classroom and then try out the technology with the assistance of an experienced practitioner.

1:30-2:30 p.m. MOOCs and Basic Writing

Session Chair: Sara Webb-Sunderhaus, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne

Discussants: Jeff Grabill, Michigan State University; Steven Krause, Eastern Michigan University; Ben McCorkle, The Ohio State University at Marion; Leigh Jonaitis, Bergen Community College.

This afternoon roundtable discussion will focus on MOOCs and their potential–and potential issues–for basic writing instruction. Our roundtable discussants represent a range of institutions and have a variety of histories with, and attitudes towards, MOOCs. Some have created and taught MOOC writing courses, while others have enrolled in these courses to understand as much as possible what a MOOC student’s experience is like.

2:30-4:00 p.m. CBW Talks Back

Session Chair: Michael D. Hill, Henry Ford Community College

Discussants: Susan Naomi Bernstein, Arizona State University; Wendy Olson, Washington State University Vancouver; Michelle Stevier-Johanson, Dickinson State University; Michael Hill, Henry Ford Community College

So often our courses in BW are constructed and/or dominated by our teaching tools: our textbooks, our exams, our writing-based computer programs.  The use of these tools is marketed by large companies; demanded by administrators and bookstores; and, at times, mandated by departments.  The unfortunate reality is that these tools tend to define the terms, the activities, and the pedagogies of our classes and they often do so poorly.  As the professionals in the BW classroom, BW teachers, along with our students, should be the ones who define the field.  In this session, the participants of the workshop will determine in what ways the CBW might speak back to the producers, the administrators and to our colleagues about the efficacy of these tools.  We will start with short presentations by practicing teachers critiquing the effects of specific products at their institutions and in their classrooms.  We will then break out into small groups, each examining and discussing separate products.  The goal in these groups will be to empower the individual teacher who must attempt to instruct salespeople, editors, bookstores, deans, and perhaps even WPAs about what basic writers needs.  The entire workshop will then reconvene to determine what type of work the CBW should be doing as an authoritative organization to combat the domination of BW products in the teaching of BW.

4:00-5:00 p.m. Basic Writing Town Hall Meeting

And don’t forget to join us for the CBW SIG on Thursday night to congratulate Bill Riley of Penn State University for receiving the 2014 CBW Travel Award and Our Lady of the Lake University’s QUEST First-Year Writing Program, winner of the 2014 Innovations in Basic Writing Award.

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Bring Technology Examples With You to CBW 2014!

Plan now to join us for our CBW pre-conference workshop, “Open Futures? Basic Writing, Access, and Technology.” The full day workshop will be Wednesday, 19 March 2014 at the CCCC convention. As part of your plans, please bring examples (posters, laptops, examples) of innovative uses of technology and basic writing for our cafe session over lunch!

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2014 Award Winners!

CCCC is just a few weeks away! Make your room on dance card for all things Basic Writing! We’ll be posting the schedule for the CBW pre-conference workshop (Wednesday, 19 March 2014, all day!) later this week. But for now, please plan to attend the CBW Meeting on Thursday, 3/20 at 6:30 p.m. to celebrate our 2014 award winners and to meet fellow basic writing faculty from around the country! On Thursday we’ll honor Bill Riley of Penn State University for receiving the 2014 CBW Travel Award and Our Lady of the Lake University’s QUEST First-Year Writing Program, winner of the 2014 Innovations in Basic Writing Award. Congratulations!

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