UWP Spring Colloquium – April 1 – Dr. Rachel Gramer

The Spring 2022 UWP Colloquium on Friday, April 1, 2022, features Dr. Rachel Gramer, Assistant Professor and Writing Program Director at Illinois State University. The event will include a presentation from 12:15-1:10 p.m. followed by a teaching workshop from 1:45-3 p.m., both of which will be held in Shanks 370/380. The colloquium is open to all Virginia Tech students, staff, and faculty; lunch will be provided. Faculty who attend the presentation and the workshop can earn 1 PDN credit by enrolling at  https://profdev.tlos.vt.edu/browse/teachingandlearning/courses/eng1-040122.

Presentation: “Real Talk: Reframing ‘Class Discussion’ as Situated Talk about Writing and Rhetoric,” 12:15-1:10 p.m., Shanks 370/380

This talk will complicate the activity of “class discussion” for college writing teachers as a normed practice whose situated usefulness we should interrogate; and argue that we have much vital work to do to unpack and improve writing pedagogy by reframing discussion as situated talk about college writing and rhetoric. In this talk, I will briefly share the scant published material on class discussion in new writing teacher preparation guidebooks. I will then share stories from a longitudinal writing teacher research project. Ultimately, this talk will invite us all to articulate how a focus on class discussion could be reframed as situated talk about writing and rhetoric, to be more effective in writing classrooms and more particular for/in the field of rhetoric and writing studies.

Teaching Workshop: “You, Too, Can Turn Theory into Praxis: Making Research-grounded Teaching Artifacts”, 1:45-3 p.m., Shanks 370/380

This workshop will provide participants with the opportunity to transform a piece of writing pedagogy research into a durable artifact for writing students. In this workshop, we will briefly view examples of what writing research-based durable artifacts might look like. We will then play with ideas and possibilities for transforming research not meant for undergraduate student writers, into teacher-made artifacts intended explicitly for students. Before participants leave, they will do some actual making that responds to these questions: if you were to (re)present this particular key concept, idea, or practice found in writing research, in a durable artifact for students, what would it look like? And how might you make it actionable in ways that work for you and students?

Please bring:

  • A digital device if you prefer to make things digitally
  • A piece of some kind of writing pedagogy research you want to make actionable for use with writing students (could be an article, a video, something from the program textbook; anything that is about a key concept or practice, NOT an assignment sheet)

If you’re not sure what piece of writing research to bring, we’ll have some that you can play around with.

About Dr. Rachel Gramer

Dr. Rachel Gramer is the Spring 2022 University Writing Program featured presenter and teaching workshop leader. She will share her work with Virginia Tech students, staff, and faculty in Shanks 370/380 on Friday, April 1.

Rachel Gramer is an Assistant Professor of English/Writing Studies and Writing Program Director at Illinois State University, specializing in new writing teacher identities and learning and feminist research methodologies, writing pedagogies, and writing program administration. Since she joined Illinois State, her thinking has been shaped by Dr. Joyce R. Walker’s literate activity approach to writing research pedagogy. She is deeply invested in how writing studies approaches can and should change college writing teacher education. If you want to read a piece of published research relevant teaching writing, see her chapter “Is Teaching Just a List?” in the recent collection co-edited with Derek Mueller and Logan Bearden, Radiant Figures: Visual Rhetorics in Everyday Administrative Contexts (2021).