May 16, 2014

Spring 2014 MS in S&TC Research Projects

Congratulations to five M.S. in S&TC students who completed professional practice research projects during Spring 2014. They shared posters and presentations at a research showcase event held on April 29th. This excellent work is available at the University of Minnesota Digital Conservancy.

Short descriptions--

How Should Technical Communication Students Best Prepare for Careers in Medical Device Companies?
Heather Sigstad
Through interviews with technical communicators from medical device companies, this study identifies skills that would help new communicators be successful in the medical device industry and maps them to the University of Minnesota's scientific and technical communication programs.

Plain English for Korean Non-native English Speakers
Changsoo Lee
This study demonstrates that Korean speakers prefer Latinate verbs in general. Test results indicate that using plain English does not guarantee Korean speakers' better comprehension of English and that concise sentences could make Korean speakers less assured of their comprehension.

Information Design and Uncertain Environments: Cognitive and Ecological Considerations in Technical Communication
Christopher Cocchiarella
This case study demonstrates the need for both cognitive and ecological considerations in technical communication through a four-part inquiry.

Software Patent Application Drafting Guideline Development
Wonjong Choi
This guideline development focuses on patent application drafting techniques that request stronger patent rights in the claim, embodiment, and drawing sections of patent applications. This work provides software patent drafting techniques for patent staff-members, inventors, and technical communication students.

Usability Themes in Open Source Software
Jim Hall
Some open source software programs are easy to learn, while others are hard to use. What makes for good usability in open source software? This examination of GNOME, an open source desktop environment, identifies usability themes that open source software developers can use to improve their programs.

April 17, 2014

MS in STC Research Showcase

Research Showcase
Featuring Spring 2014 M.S. in Scientific & Technical Communication Graduates

Please join us for research insights, networking, and snacks.
All faculty and students are welcome to attend.
Tuesday, April 29, 2014
235 Nolte, 4:00-5:00 p.m.
Presentations, 4:10-4:40 p.m.

Event Flyer

April 1, 2014

Congratulations to Katharine Swenson!

Congratulations to recent Certificate graduate Katharine Swenson, new freelance medical editor for Cardiotext, a Minneapolis-based publisher in cardiovascular medicine, where Katharine combines prior medical training with technical communication knowledge to provide substantive manuscript editing, content strategy, and author relationship management.

March 28, 2014

GPEA: Spring 2014

Joe Moses and Ann Duin will be presenting at the Spring 2014 Graduate & Professional Education Assembly as part of the Digital Fair (1:00). And Ann will be presenting with Chris Cramer as part of the panel presentation at 2:15, and also at the breakout sessions.

Wednesday, April 2 | 1:00 - 4:30 p.m.
Mississippi Room, Third Floor, Coffman Memorial Union

February 11, 2014

Kudos Trent Kays!

Trent Kays was appointed as a Community Representative for the Digital Public Library of America (Website:

Trent also had an article accepted for a special issue of the International Review of Information Ethics. The special issue is, "The Digital Future of Education," and his article is, "Digital Education and Oppression: Rethinking the Ethical Paradigm of the Digital Future."

Brian Larson to present at ISSA conference

Ph.D. candidate Brian Larson will be presenting at the 8th quadrennial conference of the International Society for the Study of Argumentation in July 2014 in Amsterdam. His presentation is titled "'Irreparable harm' and legal arguments by analogy and example." He will present the results of a pilot empirical study of written legal arguments and oral reports of authors' cognition to explore the following research questions: Do American lawyers perceive differences between arguments by analogy and arguments by example, and if so, how are those differences represented in their argumentative writing? The complete abstract is available on his academic blog.

Writing Research Across Borders (WRAB)

The department is proud of the amazing presence we'll have at this year's Writing Research Across Borders (WRAB) conference! We're pleased to be able to support our faculty and graduate students to attend this prestigious meeting in Paris. Congratulations to PhD students Ashley Clayson, Kira Dreher, Brian Larson, Molly Li, Michael Madson, Timothy Oleksiak, Rachel Tofteland; to instructors Bill West and Kimberly Thomas-Pollei; and to Professors Lee-Ann Kastman Breuch and Christina Haas.

July 23, 2013

Summer News!

Congrats to Jacqueline Schiappa! Her book chapter, "Third Wave, Breaking" has been accepted for the (Summer 2014) Demeter Press anthology This is what a feminist slut looks like': Perspectives on the SlutWalk movement. Her chapter addresses Slutwalk as an emblematic figure of third wave feminist theoretical transitions.

Félicitations to Laura Pigozzi, Brian Larsen, Timothy Oleksiak, Kira Dreher, Dawn Armfield, Ashley Clayson, Bill West, Kim Thomas-Pollei, Christina Haas, and Lee-Ann Kastman Breuch. All have been accepted to the 2014 Writing Research Across Borders in Paris, France!

And finally well done and best wishes to Doctors Dawn Armfield, Drew Virtue, and Joshua Welsh who successfully defended their dissertations this summer, and to Susan Leem, our newest MA graduate.

March 7, 2013

WRIT 4501 Usability course featured on Hennepin University Partnership web site

librarypic.jpgWRIT 4501, Usability and Human Factors in Technical Communication, is featured on Hennepin University Partnership web site's home page. The picture is from the Minnesota Librarian Association conference in October 2012, where Lee-Ann Kastman Breuch presented on this project with three students from Writing Studies and with Amy Luedtke from Hennepin County Library. Pictured from left to right are: Georgina McNiff (S&TC undergrad), Mary Frances Hull (MS/CERT), Xanthe Walker (MS/CERT), Lee-Ann Kastman Breuch, and Amy Luedtke. We are continuing this collaboration with Hennepin County Library again this semester.

February 12, 2013

Kays article to appear in Digital Humanites Quarterly

Trent Kays had an article accepted for publication in a special issue of Digital Humanities Quarterly focused on comics as scholarship. Trent is working with a comic book and graphic novel artist who is illustrating his article in various ways. The title of the piece is, "Parallel Discussions and Disparate Meanings: How Experimental Texts Change the Meaning of Scholarly Colloquies."

February 6, 2013

Armfield, Li, and Gurak accepted to IPCC

Dawn Armfield, Molly Li, and Laura Gurak were accepted into the 2013 IPCC conference this summer in Vancouver. Their panel is titled "The Global Reach of Visual Communication: Pitfalls and Potentials."

January 15, 2013

Congrats Chris!

Chris Lindgren was accepted into the 2013 RSA Institute for the "Object-Oriented and Materialist Rhetorics" workshop.

He was also invited to review the book 10 PRINT CHR$(205.5+RND(1)); : GOTO 10 for Enculturation, and is currently wrapping up his co-authored chapter in the Rhetoric and Digital Humanities edited collection with Dr. Kevin Brooks (North Dakota State University). The title of their chapter is, "Tackling a Fundamental Problem: Using Digital Labs to Build Smarter Computing Cultures."

Congrats Chris!

Congrats, Trent!

Trent Kays was accepted into the 2013 RSA Institute for both a seminar and workshop: Argumentation and Rogue Publics in the Digital Age, respectively.

Trent also had a paper accepted to the 2013 HASTAC Conference in Toronto, Canada, with Melonie Fullick (York University, Canada), sava saheli singh (New York University), and Bonnie Stewart (University of Prince Edward Island, Canada). The title of their paper is, "Cohorts without Borders: New Doctoral Subjects."

January 9, 2013

Timothy Oleksiak accepted to RSA Summer Institute

Timothy Oleksiak has been accepted to the 5th Biennial RSA Summer Institute in Lawrence, KS. At the Institute, he will participate in a week-long seminar called "Rhetoric in/between Communication and English" lead by William Keith and Roxanne Mountford. Congrats Timothy!

December 3, 2012

Congrats, Trent!

Trent Kays's review of Jody Shipka's Toward a Composition Made Whole was published in Composition Studies 40.2 (2012). It's available online.

Trent also had a chapter accepted for an edited collection: "A 21st Century Knowledge System: Social Media Ethics in the Context of the Classroom" in Gorg Mallia's The Social Classroom: Integrating Social Network Use in Education. The collection will be out next year.

October 30, 2012

Congrats Trent!

Congratulations to Trent Kays who had a digital pedagogy poster accepted for the 2013 4Cs titled, "Tweet Me, Maybe?" Trent was also recently interviewed by MPR about massive open online courses (MOOCs). See the story with audio at MPR.

October 24, 2012

Congrats Ed!

Congratulations to Ed Hahn, whose article "Writing in the Age of Humans" will be published in Rhetoric Review in 2013.

October 22, 2012

Congrats Timothy!

Timothy Oleksiak's paper "Preliminary Results: Survey on Listening, Identity, and Disagreement" has been accepted at the 2013 Northeast MLA conference in Boston. This paper is part of a 2 panel discussion on empirical research titled "Writing and the Locus of Self: Ascribing Meaning from Writer to Text."

September 26, 2012

S&TC Student Recruitment Activities

The undergraduate/graduate program recruitment committee held its first joint session, "What can I do with a degree in technical communication?" to promote our major, minor, MS, and certificate programs. Twenty-seven attendees including current students, prospective students, Writing Studies faculty and staff, CLA advisers, and alumni gathered in an active-learning classroom in STSS on Friday September 21.

Sept 21 event 1.png

Thanks to generous students and alumni, we were able to give participants a view to the skills and knowledge that transfer from programs to workplace. Jim Hall (MS, OIT Director UMN Morris), Jim Willenbring (MS, Medtronic), Tony Poetz (MS, XRS ), Kari Gordon (BS, LSS Data Systems) shared their experience with the large group and during breakouts for our undergraduate and graduate programs.

We plan to hold joint sessions at the beginning of fall and spring semesters with an aim of recruiting new student.

The joint committee: Lee-Ann K. Breuch, Ann Hill Duin, Barb Horvath, and Joe Moses

August 23, 2012

Congrats Trent!

Trent Kays was one of 50 PhD students selected to participate in the Summer Social Webshop at the University of Maryland, a week long workshop focused on social media, social computing, HCI, and research methods. He was the only writing studies/rhetoric person in attendance.

Trent was also selected as a Osher Lifelong Learning Scholar and will be teaching a course for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute this winter: "Social Media: Practice and Critique."

And, he was appointed to the editorial board of Hybrid Pedagogy: A Digital Journal of Teaching and Technology.

Congrats Trent!

August 21, 2012

Larson to present at 2013 4Cs

PhD student Brian Larson will present his paper "Examining a Twitter-Based Discourse Community of Composition Scholars" at the 2013 Conference on College Composition and Communication in Las Vegas in March 2013. The presentation is part of a panel titled "Web 2.0 as Public Writing: Composition, Collaboration, and Discourse Community in Social Media," that will present case studies in public and scholarly social media use, suggesting theory models that better account for the dynamics of social media use, and applying these theory models to social media in scholarly settings.

August 17, 2012

Kays and Larson to participate in 2013 MLA Roundtable

PhD students Trent Kays and Brian Larson will take part in a roundtable at the 2013 Modern Language Association conference in Boston in January 2013. MLA President Michael Bérubé has decided to include the roundtable, titled "Building Bridges within Digital Humanities," in the brochure on this year's presidential theme, Avenues of Access. The purpose of the roundtable is to bring together digital humanities scholars working in a variety of languages and approaches. It seeks to find ways to build bridges between the "Anglo-American" center of DH with the rest of the world of DH, both within and outside of the US borders. Kays is one of two presiders for the roundtable; Larson is one of five speakers.

August 16, 2012

Breuch and Larson to present at Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication

Dr. Lee-Ann Kastman Breuch and PhD student Brian Larson will present a talk titled "Analysis and Impact of Student Research Writing in a Technical and Professional Writing Course" at the conference of the Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication at Michigan Technological University in September 2012. Their project focuses on "research writing," or the ways in which undergraduate students interpret, evaluate, and communicate research findings in a written report. They will share preliminary findings of an analysis of 30 student research reports in a technical and professional writing course at a large public institution.

August 14, 2012

Oleksiak to present at 2013 4Cs

Timothy Oleksiak has been invited to present his paper "This Text is Not For You: Rhetorical Eavesdropping and Multimodal Composition" at the 2013 4Cs convention in Las Vegas, NV. This paper is part of a panel presentation called "Composer Agency and Multimodal Composition." The chair of the panel will be Anne Wysocki. Professor Wysocki will also serve as a respondent to the panelists. Congrats Timothy!

July 30, 2012

Final Oral Examination by David Kmiec


Final Oral Examination by David Kmiec

"Displacement and equilibrium: A cultural history of engineering in America before its golden age"

Bernadette Longo, Advisor

Tuesday, July 31, 2012
11:00 a.m.
235 Nolte

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can!

Final Oral Examination by Olga Menagarishvili


Final Oral Examination by Olga Menagarishvili

"Dictionaries of Science as Participants in Scientific Knowledge Economy"

Bernadette Longo, Advisor

Tuesday, July 31, 2012
1:00 p.m.
235 Nolte

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can!

May 2, 2012

Kudos, Trent Kays!

Trent Kays had a proposal, "Wikipedia, Ethos, and the Production of Knowledge," accepted to Wikimania 2012 in Washington DC.

He also had a proposal accepted to the 2012 National Council of Teachers of English Conference in Las Vegas, NV. He will be presenting "Twitter and Social Media for Igniting Professional Learning Connections" with colleagues from across the country.

Trent was also a finalist for a UMN Board of Regents Student Representative position.

Congrats, Trent!

April 5, 2012

Timothy Oleksiak published in Composition Studies

Congratulations to Timothy Oleksiak whose article "Incendiary Discourse: Reconsidering Flaming, Authority, and Democratic Subjectivity in Computer-mediated Communication" has been accepted for publication in the journal Composition Studies.

March 29, 2012

What can I do with a Certificate or Master of Science degree in Scientific & Technical Communication?


Thursday, March 29, 2012, 12:00-1:30
Nolte Center, 315 Pillsbury Drive SE, Minneapolis Campus, University of Minnesota

The event is free and includes a pizza lunch.
Join past, current, and prospective students--plus community partners from business and industry--
to learn how writers, designers, planners, and problem solvers in S&TC start and advance their careers.

Who should attend?
* Graduates and undergraduates interested in writing, designing, and planning communications for businesses, non-profits, and institutions
* Managers looking for talented technical communicators
* Current technical communicators interested in advancing their careers

Students, come to learn:
* What are hiring managers looking for?
* What should be in my portfolio?
* Best and worst cover letter ideas.
* The technical communication job outlook.

Please RSVP to with RSVP in the subject line.

February 6, 2012

Congrats Stephen Brasher!

Doctoral candidate, Stephen Brasher's paper "'How the Hell Do I Know Why There Were Nazi's, I Don't Know How the Can Opener Works?' : Woody Allen, Religious Dilemmas, and Film as Pedagogy" was accepted to the American Academy of Religion Upper Midwest Conference. The conference will be hosted by Lutheran Seminary in St. Paul, MN. on March 30-31, 2012.

January 20, 2012

Congrats Trent Kays!

PhD student, Trent Kays had a conference proposal accepted for the Digital (De-)(Re-)Territorializations: New Theory for New Media conference, held and moderated by Bowling Green State University.

Trent had a six word memoir published in Six Words About Work, from SMITH Magazine and edited by Larry Smith.

And, Trent is also the new Open Essays Section Editor for the Writing About Writing Newsletter, which will be debuting for the 2012 CCCC.

January 17, 2012

Paul Anheier's Final Oral Examination


Final Oral Examination by Paul Anheier

"Stasis, Change, and Pedagogic Struggle in the Teaching of Technical Writing: A Cultural Study of Houp and Pearsall's Reporting Technical Information."

Bernadette Longo, Advisor

Friday, January 20th, 2012
10:00 a.m.
201 Nicholson Hall

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can.

December 21, 2011

Writing Studies is Going to RSA 2012!

Congratulations to Writing Studies graduate students who have had their proposals accepted to the 2012 Conference of the Rhetoric Society of America. The conference is May 25-28 in Philadelphia.

Timothy Oleksiak

"Paper Towels Getting Married: Listening to the Cultural Logics of Homosexuality"

Jacqueline Schiappa
Rhetorically (re)remembering Black Power and the Peoples Temple: A Feminist Call for Counter-Histories and Maintained Otherness

Stephen Brasher

"Religious Orthodoxy, Disciplined Discourse, and the Post-human body of Jesus Christ"

December 7, 2011

Final Oral Examination by Kimberly Thomas-Pollei


Final Oral Examination by Kimberly Thomas-Pollei

"Shaping a Discipline: Science and Medical Education Reform in Britain, 1770-1858"

Richard Graff, Advisor

Thursday, December 15, 2011
12:30 p.m.
201 Nicholson Hall

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can!

November 22, 2011

Stephen Brasher's review accepted for publication

Stephen Brasher's review of the book Culture, Communication and Cyperspace: Rethinking Technical Communication for International Online Environments has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Technical Writing & Communication. It will be published in issue 42:2 of the journal, which is the 2nd edition of the journal for 2012.

November 15, 2011

Alumni Visit

RSTC alumni Connie Kampf (Aarhus School of Business) and Smiljana Antonijevic (Roskilde University), both coincidentally visiting Minneapolis from Denmark, recently had lunch with some of our Ph.D. students.

From left: Molly Li, Michael Madson, Josh Welsh, Brigitte Mussack, Connie Kampf, Smiljana Antonijevic.

October 28, 2011

Elizabeth Kalbfleisch


Final Oral Examination by

Elizabeth Kalbfleisch

"Beyond the Tradition: British Rhetoric and Modernity, 1756-1783"

Robert L. Brown, Advisor

Friday, October 28, 2011


140 Nolte Center

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can!

September 26, 2011

Grad Student Kudos

Congrats to newly minted doctoral candidate, Timothy Oleksiak, whose conference paper "Multimodal Peer Review" has been accepted to the 2012 4Cs in St. Louis, MO.

Timothy was also solicited to review Sidney Dobrin et al.'s new edited collection Beyond Postprocess for possible publication in an upcoming issue of Composition Studies.

And Timothy was accepted to the 2011 Feminisms and Rhetorics Conference in Mankato, MN. His paper is titled "Limited Group: Rhetorical Listen in First-Year Writing."

Joe Weinberg has had two articles published on GradHacker:
Everything I wish I'd known, I learned at a conference
Pedagogy of Deception: tricking students into learning

and one published on The Good Man Project, with another coming some time this week:
Lost: One Testicle

Rob Baron was cited in a KARE 11 story about a recent Cisco internet study: College students value internet as much as air and food.

September 22, 2011

Current Research in Writing Studies - September 28th

Our first Current Research in Writing Studies event is September 28th from 11:45-1:30 in Nolte Center 140.

Presenting are:

Kim Thomas-Pollei, "Rhetoric, Medicine, and Emerging Scientific Knowledge: Scottish Medical Education in the Late Eighteenth Century"

Anne Lazaraton, "And worst of all, habeus was corpsed": Language play in the Daily Kos Weblog using a passive voice frame

Please attend if you can!

September 12, 2011

Congratulations Trent Kays!

Congrats to Trent Kays on a very productive summer! Recently, he:

* was awarded the 2011 Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi's Love of Learning Award for "superior academic record and life ambitions." He is one of only 80 in the United States to receive the award.
* had a proposal accepted for the 2012 Conference on College Composition and Communication in St Louis, MO, which is titled "Locating the Intersections of Expressivist Pedagogy and Digital Writing."
* had a proposal accepted for the 2011 International Convention of the Association for Business Communication in Montreal, Quebec, which is titled "Integrating Online Identity Analysis and Web Presence Creation into Business and Professional Writing Pedagogy."
* was hired as an opinion columnist for The Minnesota Daily.
* became a biweekly contributor for The Good Men Project, a magazine and site dedicated to exploring 21st century masculinity.
* became a founding monthly contributor for GradHacker, a site dedicated to graduate student issues (similar to ProfHacker).
* was selected as one of 12 Social Media Ambassadors for UMN President Kaler's Inauguration Week festivities.
* was selected to serve as a 2011-2012 HASTAC (Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology Advanced Collaboratory) Scholar.

August 19, 2011

Fall Writing Studies Parlors

The Parlor event dates are set for Fall 2011! Please mark you calendars for 11:45am - 1:30pm on the following Wednesdays:

September 28
October 19
November 16
December 7

Parlors will be held in 140 Nolte. Information about the presenters will follow. If you are interested in presenting, please contact Donald Ross.

May 5, 2011

Association of Internet Researchers

Timothy Oleksiaks and Dawn Armfield have both had papers accepted to the Association of Internet Researchers (AoIR / ir12) conference in Seattle, Washington.

Dawn's paper is titled "Ethos to Presence: Canonical Transitions through Postcards."
Timothy's paper is "Digital Performance and Intergenerational Consubstantiality."

Congratulations Timothy & Dawn!

April 8, 2011

Timothy Oleksiak published

Timothy Oleksiak's review of Gunther Kress's Multimodality has been accepted for publication in a forthcoming issue of Rhetoric Society Quarterly. Congrats Tim!

April 1, 2011

Timothy Oleksiak presenting

Timothy Oleksiak will be presenting a revised version his Parlor presentation called "Intergenerational Consubstantiality and the 'It Gets Better Project'" during the Department of Communication Studies' Wednesday Noon Research series.

Come join in the fun on April 6, 2011 at 12:15-1:15 in Ford B15.

Upcoming Writing Studies' Parlors

Wed. April 6 / 11:00 / Nolte 140
Anne Wolf, "Improvisation as a critical cultural practice of resistance in composition pedagogy"
Ed Hahn, "Composition at the Crossroads of Hip-Hop and Whiteness"
Jacqueline Schiappa, "Understanding the Jonestown Tragedy through Others"

Thurs. April 28 / 12:00 / Nolte 125
Rick Duque, "Mapping Digital Brain Drain"
Professor Duque's research relates to an upcoming colloquium Professor Longo is planning for April 28-29.
Below is a preview of Professor Duque's presentation followed by a description of the colloquium. Please see the call for participation for more details.
Two graduate students from Vienna will also present their related research at the Parlor.

"Mapping Digital Brain Drain"
Are less developed nations with the most advanced Information and
Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructures at a greater risk of losing
their best and brightest due to the more efficient networking capabilities
of new ICTs? During the global diffusion of new ICTs, there have been
accelerated migration patterns of the highly educated professionals from
the less developed world seeking opportunities in the advanced nations of
the world. Given the unanimous global consensus, and large donor
commitment, insisting that the 'Third World' join the Digital Information
Society, this suggests that brain drain is an even more vital risk to
account for in the digital age.

"Practicing Science, Technology and Rhetoric: The North-South Divide in an Emerging Global Order"
The colloquium will highlight work being done at the University of Minnesota exploring the interdependent and global nature of contemporary science and technology practices. Participants will explore how those who work within institutions of science and/or employ emerging technologies, like (but not limited to) new information and communication technologies (ICTS), frame political, economic, cultural, and environmental arguments about the impacts of their practices on "others". In particular, we will focus on how the diffusion of contemporary science and technology practices plays out in transnational projects that span the divide between countries in the global North and South.
No fee to register.
Thursday, April 28: Institute for Advanced Study Thursday at Four presentation in Nolte 125
Friday, April 29: Interdisciplinary Center for Global Change sponsored in Studio E Rarig Center

March 28, 2011

Next Writing Studies Parlor is Wednesday, March 30th

The next Writing Studies Parlor is scheduled for Wednesday, March 30th at 11:30am, in Wesbrook 320. We hope to see you there!

Joe Bartolotta
"Twelve Bars and a Pen: Improvising and Writing as Sidepeople"

Josh Welsh and Drew Virtue
"The Book and E-Reader: Contesting the Space Between Learning and Technology"

February 7, 2011

Writing Studies Parlor

Please join us for this semester's first Parlor.

Who: Timothy Oleksiak
What: "Intergenerational Consubstantiality and the 'It Gets Better Project'"
Where: Nolte Rm. 140
When: Wednesday Feb. 9th, 11:30

January 21, 2011

Free Web development classes for S&TC majors!

Take advantage of these opportunities to learn Web development skills! Registration is required.

OIT Technology Training will present three web development courses for Writing Studies students. Participants can enroll for the training using the our web site. We will send enrollment confirmations and class reminders to the participants.

Course 1: Web Development: Essentials - XHTML
Date/Time: Saturday, Feb 5, 12:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Location: Walter 210
Instructor: Dennis Svendsen
Registration Code: s735b02

Enroll in the Web Development: Essentials - XHTML course
Click on the Custom tab on the right side of the page, enter the provided registration code, click the Enroll button, then follow the registration steps and submit.

Course 2: Web Development: Essentials - Cascading Style Sheets
Date/Time: Saturday, Feb 19, 12:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Location: Walter 210
Instructor: Pat Haggerty
Registration Code: q745c02

Enroll in the Web Development: Essentials - Cascading Style Sheets course
Click on the Custom tab on the right side of the page, enter the provided registration code, click the Enroll button, then follow the registration steps and submit.

Course 3: Web Development: Dreamweaver CS5 Basics
Date/Time: Saturday, Mar 5, 12:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Location: Walter 210
Instructor: Curt Squires
Registration Code: w6e7776

Enroll in the Web Development: Dreamweaver CS5 Basics course
Click on the Custom tab on the right side of the page, enter the provided registration code, click the Enroll button, then follow the registration steps and submit.

September 3, 2010

Summer Publications

Joe Weinberg, along with Maxwell Harper, Joe Konstan, and John Logie, published "Question Types in Social Q&A Sites" in the July issue of First Monday.

Joe Weinberg's review of Gunther Kress's book Multimodality was published in the fall issue of Kairos. The webdesign of his review was done by Dawn Armfield.

Keith Harms was also published in that issue of Kairos with a review of the book Going Wireless.

May 20, 2010

Matt Kaplan's dissertation defense


Final Oral Examination by Matthew Kaplan

"Greening the Gamescape: How Virtual Game Worlds Can Reflect Real-World Environmental Ethics"

Dan Philippon, Advisor

Wednesday, May 26, 2010, 12:30 p.m.
12 Nicholson Hall

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can!

The Graduate Symposium in Interdisciplinary Rhetorical Studies

The centerpiece of the Graduate Symposium in Interdisciplinary Rhetorical Studies will be the participation of three distinguished visiting scholars. These scholars will be noted for their interdisciplinary work in rhetoric and chosen by graduate students in Writing Studies, Communication Studies and UMD English. These visiting scholars will engage in productive dialogue with rhetoric faculty from Minnesota and with graduate students interested in rhetoric from the three participating graduate programs.

Date: 05/27/2010
Time: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Location: 125 Nolte Center for Continuing Education
Cost: Free

More Info:

May 18, 2010

Timothy Dougherty's Plan B Paper Presentation


Final Oral Presentation of a Plan B Paper by Timothy Dougherty

"Beyond the Safety of Theorizing White Students: Toward a Practice of White Fallibility for Solidarity"

Patrick Bruch, Advisor

Thursday, May 20, 2010, 3:00 p.m.
12 Nicholson Hall

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can.

May 13, 2010

Merry Rendahl's Dissertation Defense


Final Oral Examination by Merry Rendahl

"Moving First Year Writing Online: Applying Social Cognitive Theory to an Exploration of Student Study Habits and Interactions--Two Case Studies"

Lee-Ann Kastman Breuch, Advisor

Thursday, May 20, 2010
1:00 p.m.
135 Nicholson Hall

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can!

Grace Coggio's Dissertation Defense


Final Oral Examination by Grace Coggio

"Agency, Socio-Cultural Context, and the Role of the Technical Communicator During IT Adoption: A Case Study in Innovation Diffusion Across Cultures"

Bernadette Longo, Advisor

Wednesday, May 19, 2010
10:30 a.m.
12 Nicholson Hall

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can!

May 10, 2010

Writing Studies at RSA

The Department of Writing Studies, along with the U of M's Department of Communication Studies, is pleased to be hosting and coordinating local arrangements for the Rhetoric Society of America's 14th Biennial Conference to be held in downtown Minneapolis, May 28-31, 2010. Organized in 1968, RSA has grown to become the preeminent rhetorical studies society in the United States. The society's broad mission is "to gather from all relevant fields of study, and to disseminate among its members, current knowledge of rhetoric, broadly construed; to identify new areas within the subject of rhetoric in which research is especially needed, and to stimulate such research; to encourage experimentation in the teaching of rhetoric; to facilitate professional cooperation among its members; to organize meetings at which members may exchange findings and ideas; and to sponsor the publication of such materials." The conference theme is "Rhetoric: Concord and Controversy," and invites participants to deliberate on a set of perennial questions: Does rhetoric civilize? Or does it repress and control? Or both? Does it express the self? Or dissolve it into a cultural miasma? What is the price of community gained through the language of social control? What is the limit of dissent expressed through the language of difference and personal liberation? Where do diversity and sameness meet on the human tongue and in the human condition?

Good luck to all the Writing Studies / Rhetoric faculty, graduate students, and alumni presenting at this year's RSA Conference!

Faculty Presenters:
Carol Berkenkotter, Patrick Bruch, Richard Graff, Laura Gurak , John Logie, Bernadette Longo, Mary Lay Schuster

RSTC Alumni Presenters:
Smiljana Antonijevic, David Beard, T. Kenny Fountain, Cristina Hanganu-Bresch, Erin Wais Hennen, Constance Kampf, Krista Kennedy, Joseph Little, Marianallet Mendez, Gretchen Perbix, Amy Propen, Andreea Ritivoi, Greg Schneider

Current and Incoming Graduate Student Presenters:
Paul Anheier, Dawn M. Armfield, Robert Baron, Joseph Bartolotta, Stephen Brasher, Timothy R. Dougherty, Ed Hahn, Elizabeth Kalbfleisch, Matthew Kaplan, Trent Kays, Aaron Little, Timothy Oleksiak, Tad Patterson, Jacqueline Schiappa, Kimberly Thomas-Pollei, Maggie VanNorman, Drew Virtue, Jeff Ward, Joshua Welsh, Mary Jo Wiatrak-Uhlenkott, Matthew Williams

Download a detailed, printable list of presentations by U of MN faculty, students and alumni.

May 4, 2010

Scott Wyatt's Dissertation Defense May 11


Final Oral Examination by Christopher Scott Wyatt

Online Pedagogy: Designing Writing Courses for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Laura Gurak, Advisor

Tuesday, May 11, 2010, 12:00 p.m.
325 Nicholson Hall

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can!

Brenda Hudson's Dissertation Defense May 10


Final Oral Examination by Brenda Hudson

"Democratizing" Clinical Research? Efficiency and Inclusiveness in an Electronic Primary Care Research Network

Carol Berkenkotter, Advisor

Monday, May 10, 2010, 10:00 a.m.
145 Nicholson Hall

Everyone is welcome. Please attend if you can.

April 20, 2010

The Opportunities and Challenges of Social Media in the Food Industry

Dr. Gurak and graduate student Dawn Armfield are speaking at The Food Industry Center's upcoming symposium on April 28th. Since the event is a week from this Wednesday, we encourage people to register as soon as possible. UMN students can register for free by contacting Lisa Jore at 612.625.7019 or emailing

The Opportunities and Challenges of Social Media in the Food Industry
The Food Industry Center 2010 Spring Symposium

Will Social Networking come to dominate marketing strategy?
What motivates people's fascination with social networking?
How has social marketing been used to promote and change healthy behavior?

Please join us for a discussion of these questions and more on Wednesday, April 28th (8:00 am - 4:30 pm) in the Cowles Auditorium at the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs on the University of Minnesota Campus.

Event information and the agenda are available in the attached flyer. Online registration is available at

We hope you can join us!

February 25, 2010

Writing Studies Parlor: March 4th

Jacqueline Schiappa, Josh Welsh, Drew Virtue, and Timothy Oleksiak will be presenting their 4C's panel:

"Writing (in) the Public Sphere:
Deliberative Democracy and Computer Mediated Communication"

301 Vincent Hall
(between Tate Physics Lab and Ford Hall)

Thursday March 4 - 12:30pm

Feel free to bring your lunch. Light refreshments will be served.

December 9, 2009

Writing Studies Parlor: December 11th

Please join us this Friday, December 11, 2009 in 345 Nicholson Hall from 12:30-1:30. We will be treated to presentations on the theme of "Computers and Culture."

Dr. Bernadette Longo -- "Human + Machine Culture: Where We Work"

Joshua Welsh -- "Brainstorming Open Source Software"

Writing Studies students and faculty to present at RSA

Writing Studies PhD students Mary-Jo Witrak-Uhlenkott, Matthew Willaims, Timothy Oleksiak and Writing Studies professor Pat Bruch along with English PhD student Lucia Pawlowski were invited to present at the Rhetoric Socieity of America's 2010 conference in Minneapolis, MN. A general description of their panel follows:

Inventing the Department: Rhetorics of Access in Writing Studies

As RSA convenes, we pause to remember the 25th anniversary of David Bartholomae's essay, "Inventing the University." As Bartholomae argues, the university should illuminate the performative nature of rhetoric by asking students to "try on the peculiar ways of knowing...that define the discourse of our community." But as Tom Fox suggests in Defending Access, the rhetorics valued in the university frequently invite students to participate in discourse communities in ways that keep critical attention away from the violence of the rhetorical system itself. The concerns for both Fox and this panel center on enabling students to critically grapple with writing as it welcomes, denies, or discourages participation in the university. Specifically, we focus on the rhetorics promoted by the new Department of Writing Studies at the University of Minnesota as these rhetorics relate to the goal of critical participation.

November 22, 2009

Merry Rendahl published in M/MLA

Ph.D. candidate, Merry Rendahl, recently published an article, "It's Not The Matrix: Thinking about Online Writing Instruction," in M/MLA, the Journal of the Midwest Modern Language Association. Merry has taught writing in online, face-to-face, and hybrid formats. Her dissertation on online writing courses for first-year students will be completed in the 2009- I0 academic year.

The article resulted from her 2008 conference presentation, "Connecting Teachers and Students in Digital Writing Classrooms," which was part of the Digital Humanities special panel. Kathleen Diffley, Executive Director and Editor, invited her to submit my paper.

Rendahl, Merry A. "It's Not the Matrix: Thinking about Online Writing Instruction." M/MLA 42.1 (2009): 133-150. Print.

Traditional classrooms, and the simultaneous gathering of teacher and students therein, function as a ''transparent technology" of education, an assumed, unquestionable practice, one to which online learning is often juxtaposed. Yet the current configuration of "the classroom" is not inevitable; it carries within it many cultural values and warrants critical examination.

November 18, 2009

Kim Thomas-Pollei to Serve on RSA Board

Ph.D. candidate Kim Thomas-Pollei was elected to serve on the RSA board. Congratulations Kim!

November 17, 2009

Writing Studies Parlor: November 23rd

Speaking Across the Disciplines:
What Speech Pedagogy Can Teach Us About Writing

Presented by Timothy Oleksiak

A Department of Writing Studies Parlor Event
Monday, November 23, 2009
12.30 Nicholson Hall 345

Please join us for discussion and refreshments

November 6, 2009

Congratulations Linda!

Congratulations to Linda Clemens (seen here with MWCA President Deaver Traywick) who received a Midwest Writing Centers Association student travel award!

Jessica Orton and Renata Solum from the Center for Writing also won the award.


October 20, 2009

The Modern Rhetoric Project: October 22-24th

* To what extent is modern rhetorical theory a rearticulation or transformation of classical rhetorical theories?
* To what extent is modern rhetorical theory a rupture from its classical roots in response to social, aesthetic or technological changes?
* Can we use modern rhetorical theories to generate contemporary rhetorical criticism?

The Institute for Advanced Study is hosting a Colloquium on Modern Rhetoric October 22-24th. Organized by RSTC alumnus, David Beard, this event features presentations from an international faculty in composition, communication and rhetorical studies, including work by RSTC faculty members Richard Graff, John Logie, Art Walzer and Alan Gross, among others. PhD candidates Kim Thomas-Pollei and Liz Kalbfleisch are also participating.

For more information, visit

September 11, 2009

2009 Alumni Newsletter Now Available

News for Alumni and Friends of the Department of Writing Studies, 2009 (PDF)

September 10, 2009

New Grad Students Hit the Ground Running

Writing Studies first year Ph.D. students, Jacqueline Schiappa, Joshua Welsh, Andrew Virtue, and Timothy Oleksiak have been accepted to present a panel at this years 4Cs in Atlanta. Their session is titled Writing (in) the Public Sphere: Deliberative Democracy and Computer Mediated Communication. This panel aims to clarify several of the complications that stem from teaching writing with CMC.

Timothy Oleksiak has been accepted to present his paper "Speaking Across the Disciplines: What Speech Pedagogy Can Teach Us about Writing" at the 2009 SAMLA conference in Atlanta.

September 9, 2009

Upcoming Conference Presentations

Joe Weinberg and John Logie have collaborated with Max Haper and Joe Konstan of the Computer Science department to present at the Internet Research 10.0 - Internet: Critical conference for the Association of Internet Researchers in Milwaukee, WI in October. Their paper, The ABCs of DEF is a study of Q&As on websites with an Aristotelian approach.

Mary Jo Wiatrak-Uhlenkott has been accepted to present at two conferences this fall. In October, she is scheduled to present on the identity of the feminist composition community at the 2009 Feminisms and Rhetorics conference at Michigan State University in East Lansing. She is also scheduled to present at the National Women's Studies Association conference in November. The focus of the panel she is on is the politics of memory and the history of domestic violence.

June 22, 2009

Krista Kennedy wins Kairos Award

Krista Kennedy was recently selected to receive the Kairos Graduate Student and Adjunct Scholarship Award for 2008.

As noted on the Kairos web site, "The Scholarship Award is given to a person whose research and scholarship is already excellent and/or also shows future promise for having an impact on our field. Three $500 awards will be given to graduate students and/or adjuncts in the field of computers and writing. These awards are based upon the three areas that guide our professional lives: Service, Scholarship, and Teaching."

Congratulations, Krista!

Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy

April 10, 2009



April 10, 2009

Dear RSTC Students:

Through a combination of block grant money from the Graduate School, our James I. Brown and Industrial Affiliates Program foundation accounts, and CLA's Graduate Research Partnership Program, we are able to offer the following opportunities for summer funding to RSTC graduate students in good standing.

1. Competitive fellowships to support summer research and travel. Students may apply for any amount up to $2,000. (Download application materials and selection criteria.) Deadline is 10:00 a.m., Monday, April 20, 2009

2. CLA Graduate Research Partnership Program (GRPP) awarding two $4000 research fellowships (Download attachment and see this site Deadline is 10:00 a.m., Monday, April 20, 2009

3. Writing Studies $500 Graduate Student Teaching Award (Download attachment.) Deadline is 10:00 a.m., Monday, April 20, 2009

4. The two Industrial Affiliate Program (IAP) research fellowships ($2,000 each) are with Medtronic and US Bank. These fellowships are for the 2009-10 school year and are open to all current MS and RSTC students as well as the newly admitted students. Call for Applications is attached. The new IAP application deadline is April 24, 2009.

Details for each award are included in the attachments, however, don't hesitate to contact me or Mary Wrobel if you have questions.

Bernadette Longo, Ph.D.

Director of Graduate Studies
RSTC Program
Dept. of Writing Studies
University of Minnesota

April 2, 2009

Congrats to Greg Schneider, winner of the COGS Leadership Award Honorable Mention!

Congratulations to Greg Schneider, winner of the COGS Leadership Award Honorable Mention! Greg is honored for his leadership on behalf of the graduate students in the Department of Writing Studies. Greg has served as a graduate student representative to the DGS Advisory Committee, instituted a graduate student assembly, worked to redesign and expand the Writing Studies Parlors, ensured that graduate students' perspective is represented well in the curriculum, and helped redesign the way the department conducts preliminary doctoral examinations.

Thank you Greg, for your leadership and service to the department!

February 3, 2009

STC U of M Student Chapter Meeting & Event

Professional Portfolios: Communicate what you can do
February 28, 2009
St. Paul Campus

* Presentation by Fred Carpenter will provide a survey of what electronic and hard copy portfolios are, their purposes, and what makes them effective
* Workshops detailing the “how to�? elements of building a portfolio
* Attendees who bring their portfolios will have the opportunity to receive comments on how to make them better, and those who do not have portfolios will learn how to get one started

More information and online registration at

Students $5 early registration by February 16
$8 after February 16 or at the door
Professionals $20 early registration
$25 after February or at the door

About the speaker: Fred Carpenter is presently graduate program coordinator for the College of Arts and Sciences, Metropolitan State University. She has worked in academic, government and corporate environments including the Public Guardian's Office for the State of Alaska and Sybase Inc. Her interest in portfolios emerged as a result of being a coordinator and guiding applicants through the reasoning, design and execution of portfolios for the program.

Download flyer

U of M Job and Internship Fair

Monday, February 9, 2009
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Minneapolis Convention Center

Come to the biggest student career fair in Minnesota! More than 250 organizations will be there recruiting for hundreds of jobs and internships. The Job and Internship Fair is free and open to all U of M undergraduates, graduate students, and recent alumni. This event was created just for you!

For more information, visit:

November 16, 2008

James I. Brown Fellowship available for Fall 2009

The Department of Writing Studies at the University of Minnesota is pleased to announce the James I. Brown Graduate Fellowship for enhanced funding during the first year in its graduate program in Rhetoric and Scientific and Technical Communication (RSTC). This fellowship is made possible thanks to the generosity of the James I. Brown family. It will provide full first-year, non-teaching support for one doctoral student entering the program in Fall 2009 (currently over $13k annually in 9-mnth salary), plus tuition waiver and full benefit package. After the first year of fellowship funding, fellows will receive 4 additional years of support (salary, tuition waiver, and benefits) through a teaching assistantship of one course per semester.

In their application materials, interested applicants should suggest a research topic, which is compatible with the intellectual focus of the graduate program. When applying, please indicate if you are only interested in this fellowship, or if you also wish to be considered as an applicant to the program with the regular 5-year teaching assistantship support as described above. To apply for the RSTC program, see For information on the Department and the RSTC program, see . For further information on the graduate program, and this fellowship, please contact the Director of Graduate Studies, Deadline for applications is January 5, 2009.

July 18, 2008

Kmiec to work with Univ. of Delaware College of Engineering

I am pleased to announce that starting in Fall 2008, Dave Kmiec will be working with the University of Delaware College of Engineering to enhance communication skills of engineering majors. In this position, Dave will work with non-native as well as native speakers of English to explore curricular possibilities of traditional and alternative course structures, such as short courses, variable credit courses, tutorials, workshops, team teaching, or linked writing credits. He will also work with grant-funded projects and industry outreach. Please join me in congratulating Dave as he moves to Delaware to accept this challenging opportunity, while continuing his studies in our Ph.D. program...B. Longo

April 21, 2008

Discussion Panel - "Hip Hop Culture and American Politics: Past and Present"

Anthony Arrigo is hosting a discussion panel this Wednesday evening on hip hop culture and American politics as part of a course he's teaching this semester. The event is free and open to the public. Download flier

What: Discussion panel - "Hip Hop Culture and American Politics: Past and Present"
When: Wednesday, April 23rd
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Where: 330 Anderson Hall, West Bank of U of M campus

April 17, 2008

Graduate Student Publications!

plagiarism.jpgJeff Ward has had an essay published in Originality, Imitation, and Plagiarism: Teaching Writing in the Digital Age.

From the University of Michigan Press:
This collection is a timely intervention in national debates about what constitutes original or plagiarized writing in the digital age. Somewhat ironically, the Internet makes it both easier to copy and easier to detect copying. The essays in this volume explore the complex issues of originality, imitation, and plagiarism, particularly as they concern students, scholars, professional writers, and readers, while also addressing a range of related issues, including copyright conventions and the ownership of original work, the appropriate dissemination of innovative ideas, and the authority and role of the writer/author. Throughout these essays, the contributors grapple with their desire to encourage and maintain free access to copyrighted material for noncommercial purposes while also respecting the reasonable desires of authors to maintain control over their own work.

Both novice and experienced teachers of writing will learn from the contributors' practical suggestions about how to fashion unique assignments, teach about proper attribution, and increase students' involvement in their own writing. This is an anthology for anyone interested in how scholars and students can navigate the sea of intellectual information that characterizes the digital/information age.

office.jpgGreg Schneider and Dr. Matthew P. Meyer co-authored "Being-in-The Office: Sartre, the Look, and the Viewer" in The Office and Philosophy: Scenes from the Unexamined Life (The Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series).

From Blackwell:
Just when you thought paper couldn't be more exciting, this book comes your way! This book - jammed full of paper - unites philosophy with one of the best shows ever: The Office. Addressing both the current American incarnation and the original British version, The Office and Philosophy brings these two wonders of civilization together for a frolic through the mundane yet curiously edifying worlds of Scranton's Dunder-Mifflin and Slough's Wernham-Hogg.

Is Michael Scott in denial about death? Are Pam and Jim ever going to figure things out? Is David Brent an essentialist? Surprisingly, The Office can teach us about the mind, Aristotle, and humiliation. Even more surprisingly, paper companies can allow us to better understand business ethics. Don't believe it? Open this book, and behold its beautiful paper…

Join the philosophical fray as we explore the abstract world of philosophy through concrete scenes of the unexamined life in The Office. You may discover that Gareth Keenan is secretly a brilliant logician, that Dwight Schrute is better off deceiving himself, that David Brent is an example of hyperreality, and that Michael Scott is hopelessly lost (but you probably already knew that!).

April 2, 2008

Writing Studies at CCCC

Faculty, Instructional Staff, Graduate Students, and Alumnae from the Department of Writing Studies and the Center for Writing are presenting at this year's CCCC Convention in New Orleans.

Bernadette Longo, along with her co-editors Blake Scott and Katherine Wills, will be receiving their NCTE Outstanding Book award at CCCC this year for their collection Critical Power Tools. Congratulations, Bernadette!

Resisting Neoliberal Reality in the Writing Center: Durable, Democratic Networks in Long-Term Tutoring Practices, Relationships, and Program Development
Chair: Tom Friedrich, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
Speakers: Tom Friedrich, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “Long-term Tutoring Relationships as Durable, Democratic Networks: Using Hermeneutic Study of the Essence of Long-term Tutoring to Guide Program
Kirsten Jamsen and Katie Levin, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “‘What makes a good writing center citizen?’: Two Case Studies of How Long-term Tutoring Relationships Change Writers and Tutors�?
Candance Doerr, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “Graduate Tutors and Dissertation Writers as Network Reality: Distributed Democracy or Social Reproduction?�?

Rhetorics and Realities of Change: Reflections on Theory and Practice from a New Department of Writing Studies
Chair: Patrick Bruch, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
Speakers: Donald Ross, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “Rhetorics and Realities of Writing as a Campus-wide Initiative at Minnesota�?
Thomas Reynolds, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “Rhetorics and Realities of First-Year Composition at Minnesota�?
Tim Gustafson, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “Rhetorics and Realities of Teacher Development at Minnesota�?
Lee-Ann K. Breuch, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “Rhetorics and Realities of Assessment at Minnesota�?

Bodies, Water, and Money: Epideictic Rhetoric and the Rhetoric of Images in Science

Chair: Ken Baake, Texas Tech University, Lubbock
Speakers: T. Kenny Fountain, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “Whole-Body Gifts: Epideictic Display and Anatomy Memorial Services�?
Fawn Musick, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, “Making Meanings through Visual Rhetoric in the Medical School Cadaver Lab�?
Derek Ross, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, “Sociopolitics and Dam Tourism: Glen Canyon and Hoover Dam as Recreational Areas�?
Ryan Hoover, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, “Scientists, Visual Rhetoric, and Grant Applications: Striking a Balance between Simplicity and Effectiveness�?

Institutions and the Writing In and Writing Out of Voice
Chair: Anthony Arrigo, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis/St. Paul
Speakers: Katy Southern, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Writing Histories of the Overlooked: Gender, Status, and the Historical Record�?
Anthony Arrigo, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis/St. Paul, “Puny Hands: The Rhetorically Constructed Identity of Hoover Dam Laborers in Early 20th Century Popular Science Texts�?

Rhetoric Department Alumnae
Jennifer Novak, Denver University, CO, “Shaping Future Biomedical Practices: Kairos, Tools, and the Rhetoric of Medicine�?

Open Source and Free Software Users Group
Co-Chairs: Clancy Ratliff, University of Louisiana, Lafayette
Charles Lowe, Grand Valley State University, Allendale, MI

Not Just a Bullet on an Outcomes Statement: Taking Civic Literacy Seriously

Chair: Clancy Ratliff, University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Clancy Ratliff, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, “What Can Composition Learn from Bloggers’ Civic Writing? Tapping Into the Agora�?

Graduate Students at CCCC

Ph.D. students Kenny Fountain and Anthony Arrigo will present at this year's CCCC Convention in New Orleans.

Bodies, Water, and Money: Epideictic Rhetoric and the Rhetoric of Images in Science
Fountain T. Kenny, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, “Whole-
Body Gifts: Epideictic Display and Anatomy Memorial Services?

Institutions and the Writing In and Writing Out of Voice
Chair: Anthony Arrigo, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis/St. Paul
Anthony Arrigo, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis/St. Paul, “Puny Hands:
The Rhetorically Constructed Identity of Hoover Dam Laborers in Early
20th Century Popular Science Texts?

Zoe Nyssa Receives Consortium on Law and Values Grant

Zoe Nyssa was the recipient of one of eight Consortium on Law and Values grants for summer 2008. This grant makes it possible for her to conduct interviews and a survey of conservationists attending the Society for Conservation Biology conference this July as part of a pilot study for her dissertation on animal conservation discourses.

“Studying Biodiversity, Saving Biodiversity: Investigating Expert Constructions of Public Understanding of Conservation Science?—Zoe Nyssa, PhD student, Writing Studies ($5,954 awarded)

Each investigator receiving this award becomes a "Consortium Student Scholar." He or she will present a written report on the funded work to the full Consortium in 2009 and the project will be featured on the Consortium website. Awardees may also be asked to present at a Consortium-sponsored conference.

November 2, 2007

Spotlight on Ph.D. student: Zoe Nyssa

ecuador.gifZoe was accepted into the Traveling Scholar Program and is taking doctoral seminars at the University of Chicago this fall offered through the Committee on Conceptual and Historical Studies of Science. The Traveling Scholar Program allows qualified doctoral students at CIC-member institutions to spend up to two semesters taking classes for credit (and at tuition parity!) at another CIC university (For more information:

Over the summer Zoe was also in Ecuador for several weeks assisting the Santa Lucia Cloudforest Reserve, the flagship community-based ecotourism project of Rainforest Alliance, a UK environmental organization. Working with the lodge director and several of the guides, she is redeveloping and expanding all accompanying English materials (primarily the self-guided tours and some website content) to better convey the scientific and conservation work Santa Lucia is engaged in to the lodge's visitors.

September 24, 2007

Writing Studies Parlor Presents Joseph Little (Sept. 28)

The first Parlor of the semester will be held on Friday, 28 September at 4:15. Professor Joseph Little will present on "On Seeing Further: Analogy, Insight, and Resources in Scientific Theory Construction."

Joe is an Assistant Professor in Rhetoric and Composition at Niagara University in New York. He received an MA in RSTC (working under Alan and Art) and a PhD from University of California Santa Barbara, working under
Chuck Bazerman.

Download flier

May 2, 2007

Award Winners

Scott Wyatt, a PhD student in the RSTC program, was awarded a DOVE Research Grant for the summer from the College of Liberal Arts. This is a competitive and prestigious award. The title of Scott's proposal is "Virtually Different: Rhetorical Strategies of Autistic Students in Virtual Spaces." Lee-Ann Kastman Breuch, as his academic advisor, is overseeing Scott's work.

Kenny Fountain, a PhD student in the RSTC program, won a dissertation fellowship from the Graduate School, a very competitive and prestigious award. The fellowship will support Kenny for 2007-08 while he works on his dissertation, "'A Matter of Perception': Rhetoric, Embodiment & the Visual Practices of Anatomy Laboratory Education." Mary Schuster is Kenny's advisor.

Congratulations to Scott and Kenny.

April 19, 2007

Greg Schneider wins Council of Graduate Students' Leadership Award

Congratulations to Greg Schneider who recently was named as the winner of the Council of Graduate Students' (GOGS') Leadership Award. Greg was nominated by the members of the Get Stuff Done writing group that Greg organized in 2004. The group meets regularly and its efforts have improved the quality of many Masters papers, dissertations, and conference papers produced by RSTC students. See the attached nomination letter, largely the work of Salma Monani, a grateful member of GSD.

Greg has talked about devoting part of his award money to improving the quality of the libations at GSD. Sometimes good deeds such as Greg's but also Salma's are rewarded.

Arthur Walzer

Download nomination letter [pdf].