March 2020 Announcements

The Composition Program has the following announcements, upcoming events, and updates to share for March.

Modified Approaches to Teaching ENGL1105 and ENGL1106 – Spring 2020 Semester
Due to the Coronavirus global health crisis and in heeding the announcement by President Tim Sands on Wednesday, March 11, Virginia Tech classes will resume on Monday, March 23, in fully online formats. We on the program’s leadership team urge everyone teaching ENGL1105 and ENGL1106 this semester to consult the guiding document we’ve shared at The document reiterates what we hope will be everyone’s commitments to kindness, compassion, and supportiveness.

Updated Spring 2020 Program Calendar
The Spring 2020 Composition Program calendar is up to date at Please note that the Race and Rhetorics Series visit by Dr. John Baugh has been cancelled. So, too, has the social gathering at CCCC been cancelled. The Instructor Forum on Friday, April 3, will take place via Zoom. Watch for further announcements about whether presentations by Dr. Angela Haas, Dr. Kelli Cargile Cook, and Dr. Octavio Pimentel will be continued in alternative formats or postponed/cancelled.

Teaching Portfolio Awards – Deadline Extended
We have extended by two weeks the deadline for this year’s teaching portfolio awards. The Composition Teaching Portfolio Award is designed to encourage the development and collection of exemplary teaching materials. The full description of the award is available online at Teaching portfolios must be submitted by Friday, March 27, 2020, no later than 5 p.m. EDT.

Understanding Rhetoric in Online Environments
Drs. Liz Losh and Jonathan Alexander, authors of Understanding Rhetoric, reached out over the weekend to share with all of us ideas they have for aligning the textbook with the shift to teaching writing in online environments (attached to internal email).

Leadership Team Available to Support You and Your Students
If you would like to think together about adjustments you are making to your section(s), have someone read an assignment sheet and consider how you have reframed a project or an activity, or discuss any other dimension of your teaching this semester, please consider contacting Derek Mueller, Julie Mengert, or Steve Oakey. Derek’s regular office hours will resume tomorrow, March 17, online via Zoom on Tuesdays throughout the remainder of the semester, from 12-3 p.m. EDT at [link redacted from HokiesWrite online version]. Simply click the link, join the Zoom meeting in progress, and use this as an opportunity to talk through any questions you or your students may have. Additional consultation hours are available with all of us, as you request them.

2020 Corridors Conference: Making Rhetorics
As we continue planning and preparations for the Fall 2020 Corridors Conference, at the moment we expect the event to go ahead as scheduled. The 2020 conference will be held in Shanks Hall on Saturday, September 19, 2020. The theme is “Making Rhetorics.” The call for proposals is posted online at The proposal system will remain open through May 15, 2020

Corridors: Blue Ridge will be held on Saturday, September 19, 2020, in Blacksburg, Va. This year’s theme is “Making Rhetorics.”

Pathways Assessment for Spring 2020
Pathways assessment continues this semester, following the process outlined online at Pathways data is due no later than May 16, 2020, for Spring 2020 sections of ENGL1105 and ENGL1106.

August 2020 Composition Program Workshop and Community Day
The August Workshop for 2020-2021 will be held August 10-14, 2020. The program’s Community Day will be on Thursday, August 13, 2020. This all-day event will feature a yet-to-be-determined presenter who will also lead a pedagogical workshop followed by a social event at day’s end. We are sharing the date at this time simply to allow for everyone to plan ahead. Attendance at the workshop is expected of all GTAs who will be teaching composition at Virginia Tech for the first time. Attendance at the Community Day event is expected of all GTAs and encouraged for everyone else. A more detailed schedule for the day will circulate in the weeks leading up to Community Day, but please put it on your calendar (9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. in Shanks 370/380; lunch provided).