Workshops

Periodically throughout the year the Graduate Writing Program offers writing workshops.  These workshops are free and open to the campus community.  The exact dates and times change each semester, so check back for regular updates.  For details about the workshops available click through the list below.

Getting the Most out of Peer Review
Writers need feedback to coach and guide them as they develop their research projects. This workshop teaches how to use peer review to your benefit--as both a producer and recipient of critical feedback. Two copies of at least 5 pages of writing should be brought to workshop.
Graduate Writing in Science Programs
Science graduate students may be daunted by new writing tasks in graduate school: writing descriptively and critically about research conducted in their fields, grant proposals, qualifying exams, and publishable journal articles. This workshop teaches students to use samples of published writing in their field to learn what good writing in their field looks like, how to adapt writing techniques for different science audiences, and how to write descriptively and analytically about previous research. Students will learn how to revise for their audience considering appropriate styles of argumentation, strength of claims, style and foregrounding writer voice, and jargon and technical terms the field uses.
Mentoring Graduate Writing
Graduate writers come to us with varied skill sets and a wide range of preparation for the writing tasks they will need to complete in graduate studies and beyond. As faculty, we have increasing demands on our time. Add to that the fact that mentoring graduate writing is a complex and challenging task for which none of us receives training. How can we make this task more manageable? You will leave this workshop with clear ideas for how the institution, our departments, and we as faculty members can smooth out this process.
Pre-writing is Writing
Students often downplay, or outright ignore, all of the work that goes into a first draft before the first word is even put on the page. This workshop introduces several techniques to refine your writing materials and make first drafts more manageable.
Publishing in Academic Journals
As graduate students you have often heard the infamous “publish or perish” mantra from faculty and colleagues. This workshop provides an introduction to scholarly publishing activity by targeting a specific journal and preparing a potential research article for publication. You build a proper understanding of the publishing process by ensuring that manuscripts are prepared and presented in a manner that facilitates the publishing process and which, in so doing, improves their chances for selection in scholarly publication outlets.
Revising/Editing Workshop
In this workshop you learn revision strategies designed to clarify and organize your argument, create effective and concise paragraphs and sentences, and develop efficient editing skills. You also learn tips for cutting wordiness, by improving word choice and conciseness, as well as making your writing reader-centered for an academic audience.
Successful Students Tell All
Hindsight’s 20/20. A panel of experienced graduate students talk about what they wish they had known when they entered graduate school. They provide tips on what they think makes graduate studies go as smoothly as possible. Don’t miss this chance to learn the real story from your peers.
Synthesizing and Writing a “Literature Review”
As a graduate student, you synthesize literature in seminar papers, comprehensive exams and thesis/dissertation chapters. The first half of this workshop provides a prewriting framework to synthesize annotations from a large body of literature. The second half of the workshop points out common pitfalls of graduate writers producing literature reviews and ends with several concrete tips to avoid those pitfalls. You leave with a clear system of preparation and framework for producing sophisticated literature reviews.
Teaching Journals for Improving Instruction and Mentoring of Writing or Language
This professional development workshop presents ideas for how teachers can incorporate journal writing into their reflection processes and course planning. This is a place to discuss your experiences journal writing or thoughts on how it could be useful to you.
Writing Issues in Multidisciplinary Programs
Graduate students in area studies programs, or laboratory science, social science and humanities programs with strong multidisciplinary collaboration, may struggle to learn the rhetoric and methods of multiple disciplines and write appropriately for a diverse audience. This workshop helps students learn what good writing looks like in their fields, learn skills for gaining specific writing feedback from advisors in different disciplines, and develop a pre-proposal for their project that negotiates disciplinary boundaries. Students will learn how to revise for their audience considering use of jargon and technical language, strength of claims, styles of argumentation, style and foregrounding writer voice.

Spring 2014 Workshops

Editing Workshop I: Clarity
In this workshop, we will discuss how to avoid comments on your writing like vague, unclear, not sure what you mean here by editing for clarity. You will identify the clarity principles that challenge you and work to revise those. Bring a hard copy of 10 pages of a current writing project. February 5, 3:30 – 4:30 in 108 Fraser
Editing Workshop II: Conciseness
Been told your writing is too wordy? Need to edit a manuscript down? Feel like the main point gets buried? Bring 10 pages of a writing project and we will practice strategies for concise writing. February 19 3:30 – 4:30 in 108 Fraser
Editing Workshop III: Cohesion and Arguments
Learn principles for making your ideas more cohesive and your argument easier to follow. Bring a hard copy of 10 pages of your writing, and we’ll workshop your text for argument and cohesion. April 16 3:30 – 4:30 in 108 Fraser
Dissertation Proposal
This workshop offers concrete writing tips for drafting a proposal, and revising to improve clarity, conciseness and cohesion throughout the text. This session of a Graduate Writing Program class is open to all graduate students, and attendees are asked to bring the proposal guidelines from their department. April 2, 11:00 - 12:15 in 145 JRP
Reflective Writing in the Academy
Join us to learn how reflective writing – such as teaching statements, personal essays, cover letters, and annual reviews – plays a role in an academic career. This workshop session of a Graduate Writing Program class includes concrete writing tips and examination of sample documents. April 21, 11:00 - 12:15 in 145 JRP
Preparing for Your Defense
How can you proactively prepare for your proposal, thesis, or dissertation defense? What should you ask beforehand? What should you prepare? What kinds of questions should you expect to field? What makes a good vs. a poor answer? What can you do to make this an enjoyable experience for everyone? March 26, 4:30 – 5:30 in the Pine Room, Kansas Union.

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