Conference on Teaching of Writing

University of Connecticut, First-Year Writing
Fifteenth Annual Conference on the Teaching of Writing
April 17, 2020, UConn Hartford Campus

Making Your Writing Course Move
We invite conference proposals for the University of Connecticut First-Year Writing Program’s Conference on the Teaching of Writing, taking place Friday, April 17, 2020 on the UConn Hartford Campus. Proposal submissions are due February 2, 2020. Our theme this year is Making Your Writing Course Move , with keynote speaker Jenae Cohn of Stanford University; we invite proposals that engage this theme.

UConnFirst-Year Writing is at the end of a multi-year curriculum redesign based on recent research on multimodal composing, accessibility, and digital literacies. As our program and Rhet/Comp in general have experienced a digital
turn, we must also consider the ways digital writing still engages bodies and the role bodies, norms about embodiment, and bodily literacies have in composition in all modes.
Scholars such as Christina V. Cedillo and Robert McRuer have argued that composition courses tend to privilege certain kinds of movement in writing, a movement that also assumes whiteness, ablebodiness, and straightness or wholeness.

This conference asks in what ways instructors of writing can make space for diverse kinds of movement, or facilitate movement that may not always lead to wholeness or completion. Recent work in the field has also considered
how technologies may destabilize traditional or normative modes of composition. Jenae Cohn’s latest work, for example, explores the ways in which digital reading practices and the moves therein create opportunities for more inclusive perspectives of what reading for learning can look like. Her keynote talk will draw upon her forthcoming book, Skim, Dive, Surface: Strategies for Digital Reading in the College Classroom.

We have designed our First-Year Writing classes around five “ course moves ” that prioritize active learning and accessibility. Each move offers a way to think about what we do when we write.

We invite proposals of 250-300 words to consider questions such as:
● What does it mean to move in writing? What does this term afford, enhance, inspire,
entangle, and limit?
● How do we make space for diverse writing moves in our field, classes, or institutions?
How do students engage those moves?
● How is the embodied experience of writing shaped by fields, classes, or institutions?
● How do we see fields, classes, or institutions constructing movement based on race,
class, ability, gender, sexuality, or culture? How might we subvert, push back, or find
space for alternative movements and possibilities within these spaces?
● How does technological composition move ?
● What kinds of bodies get to move through/with technologies? (e.g., how do surveillance
technologies privilege or assume certain kinds of movement? How can we design
technologies for inclusion?)
● What kinds of expressions are possible through/with technologies?
We offer a variety of session types: panels, posters, and workshops, each with their own
affordances. Below, we’ve outlined examples of each, as well as what to expect. Please indicate
which session you will be engaging in your submission form and in your session description.
● Posters can focus on a specific activity or method you use in the classroom, or on a
specific aspect of your in-process research. They can be in digital, analog, and/or
interactive formats, and don’t need to be on a traditional “poster.” Poster presenters have
an opportunity to receive in-the-moment feedback from circulating audience members.
● Panels are ideal for a larger scale intervention; for example, extending recent work in
composition or drawing larger conclusions based in research or case studies. We
especially invite group proposals (at least 3 to 4 people) to submit as a panel. Individual
proposals will be grouped based on the topic.
● Interactive Workshops can engage participants in a classroom exercise, an
activity-based engagement with research or a theory, etc. Workshops should have at
least two presenters.
Apply at our conference website