Congratulations to the Spring 2021 Faculty Writing Fellows Cohort

Howe Writing Across the Curriculum (HWAC) is glad to welcome 20 new Miami faculty members as Faculty Writing Fellows Program alumni.

During the Spring 2021 semester, faculty from the departments of teacher education, music, architecture + interior design, and commerce collaborated with our HWAC team to consider theory behind writing and learning and prepare projects geared toward curricular change. Read on below to get an overview of each team’s project.

We’re still accepting faculty teams for the Fall 2021 Faculty Fellows Program, which will meet 1:30-3:00PM on Mondays. We hope to be together in person at the Howe Center for Writing Excellence in King Library, but participants will have the option to join virtually.

Teacher Education (Adolescent and Young Adult Program)

Faculty team: Kathy Batchelor, Nathaniel Bryan, Todd Edwards, Eva Howard, Ann Mackenzie, Tom Misco, Molly Sawyer, and Robin Schell

The department of teacher education has sent several teams through the Fellows program. Their goals for curricular change focus on the department’s mission to frame pedagogy in cultural contexts and prepare future educators to “confront social injustices, apply global perspectives, and actively participate in democratic society.”

This Spring, the adolescent & young adult program from teacher education decided to turn that mission statement back on the department. Curricular change has helped Miami’s education students appreciate threshold concepts like “teaching is not neutral,” but to what extent do faculty themselves embrace such concepts as classroom leaders? The team prepared threshold concepts for faculty centered on the economic, social, cultural, historical, and political contexts of teaching, research, and service. They then devised a 4-step plan, to be implemented in the Fall of 2021, to promote deep reflective practice, collaboration, and cultural change among their faculty.


Faculty team: Thomas Garcia, Wallis Vore, and Aaron Pergram

This is the second team from the department of music to participate in Fellows. In Spring 2019, the first faculty team focused on how graduate students research and write in the discipline. This Spring’s team, all of whom teach large Global Miami Plan courses, focused on the department's 100-level courses. They wanted to find ways to help students through the threshold of appreciating music for its cultural context and affective experience.

To challenge students to make deeper connections with music in these entry-level courses (MUS185 Diverse Worlds of Music, MUS186 Global Popular, MUS189 Great Ideas in Western Music, and MUS225 History of Rock and Roll), the faculty team will redesign curriculum in favor of more formative assessment. They’ll utilize prior knowledge surveys, low-stakes writing assignments, journaling, and prewrites. They also plan to scaffold larger assignments and move away from “term” papers.

Architecture + Interior Design

Faculty team: Mary Rogero (chair), Mary Ben Bonham, Gülen Çevik, Diane Fellows, Elizabeth Keslacy, and Jeffrey Kruth

The architecture + interior design department were new to the Fellows experience and eager to break down where writing was being enacted in their discipline and where future opportunities might reside. They identified several threshold concepts for students learning to write formally, informally, and professionally. The team also sent a comprehensive survey to their departmental colleagues which showed the breadth and depth of writing opportunities in the existing curriculum. It’s among the most thorough writing audits we’ve seen in the Fellows program.

Moving forward, the team plans to continue focusing on writing in their curriculum. They’ll engage their whole department with goals of preparing students to write in the discipline, including acknowledging multicultural perspectives in design and writing, and consider the potential for building a Miami Plan Advanced Writing course.


Faculty team: Thomas Mays, Mary Kovach, and Patrick Lindsay

Courses taught in Miami’s department of commerce often enroll students who have varying degrees of prior academic preparation, including with writing. Working from this insight, the team of Mays, Kovach, and Lindsay resolved to design a training module on writing that their departmental colleagues can integrate into Canvas course pages. Called “Module 0,” it will provide students with an orientation of sorts to college writing broadly and specifically to writing for commerce. Sections of the module cover topics like reading comprehension with business texts, applying situation analysis recommendation (SAR), and using APA citation. Peer collaboration via online platforms like Google Hangouts and Canvas are also covered, along with matters of academic integrity.

“Module 0” has been met with enthusiasm by the wider commerce faculty and will begin to be implemented in commerce courses.