On Wednesday, October 12th, Writing Across Communities welcomed Dr. Stephanie Dunson, of Bard College’s Institute for Writing and Thinking, to St. John’s campus for a faculty workshop entitled “Writing & Thinking: Sustaining a Writing-Based Classroom.”
Stephanie Dunson, Ph.D. is an internationally celebrated facilitator who uses writing as a tool for problem solving and collaboration. She has transformed the way academic faculty view the writing process and meet their pedagogical and scholarly goals.
October’s “Writing & Thinking” workshop was attended by SJU faculty and graduate students alike, from across departments and at different stages of their academic careers.
Attendees to this foundational workshop were introduced to writing-based teaching practices and given the opportunity to reflect on how they approach their own writing, as well as how they teach writing. The workshop also served as a space to exchange ideas, and even to practice scaffolding exercises that can be used to encourage students to produce more expressive and engaged writing.
“Most people only think of writing as a way of expressing what they know. But writing can also be a powerful and adaptive tool for thinking creatively about challenging ideas, for establishing inclusivity, for drawing people together around shared objectives, and for doing these things in a minimal amount of time,” explains Dr. Dunson.
Participants called the workshop “restorative” and “inspirational,” noting that what they learned seemed both versatile and practical, able to be applied in a wide variety of classroom settings.
Dr. Dunson will be visiting campus again on Wednesday, November 9th, for a second workshop, entitled “Writing to Learn: Helping Students to Explore Complex Ideas in Diverse Contexts.” October’s workshop is not a prerequisite, and faculty from across the university are welcomed and encouraged to register.