The book on this study, The Meaningful Writing Project: Learning, Teaching, and Writing in Higher Education (2016) is now available for purchase from Utah State University Press!

Several trends emerged from the research: The majority of students noted that meaningful writing projects were something they had never done before but that they felt would be connected to the writing they would do as professionals. Also meaningful were writing projects that were connected to students’ lives and interests beyond school, as well as writing projects that helped them learn or explore course content more deeply. Finally, a key implication for teaching is that meaningful writing projects frequently had requirements but also offered students considerable choice in topic or approach.


Upcoming Events & Other Places We Have Shared Our Findings

In June 2018, all three researchers will host a plenary session at the International Writing Across the Curriculum (IWAC) Conference in Auburn, Alabama.

In February 2018, Anne delivered the Innovations in Higher Education Lecture at the D’Amour Center for Teaching Excellence at Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts.

In November 2016 all three researchers delivered an interactive keynote presentation at Quinnipiac University’s Sixth Biennial Conference on Thinking and Writing Across the Curriculum. At the conference, they also led consultations for other scholars seeking to develop or launch meaningful writing initiatives on their own campuses.

In June, 2016, all three researchers offered a workshop at the International Writing Across the Curriculum Conference in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

In March, 2015, all three researchers showcased The Meaningful Writing Project and invited audience members to participate in the data collection in an interactive poster session at the Conference on College Composition and Communication in Tampa, Florida. The Meaningful Writing Project poster also won the 2015 award for best overall poster presentation! Thanks to all who participated.

In June, 2014, all three researchers presented results of the faculty survey at the International Writing Across Curriculum Conference (IWAC) at the University of Minnesota.

In March, 2014, Anne and Neal gave a lecture entitled The Meaningful Writing Project: Learning from Students to Improve Teaching at the University of New Hampshire’s Center for Teaching Excellence, hosted by University Writing Programs.

On January 7th, 2014, Anne presented the annual Writing Center Workshop for Faculty and Staff at Dutchess Community College. “Crafting Powerful Writing Assignments across the Disciplines: Learning from Students to Improve Teaching with Writing at DCC.”

In August, 2013 Anne discussed The Meaningful Writing Project to the entire faculty and staff of Mountain View College in Dallas, Texas in a talk entitled “Meaningful Writing in (Un)Expected Places.”

In June, 2013, all three researchers gave a presentation entitled “Personal Connections and Future Applications: Implications for Transfer from The Meaningful Writing Project,” at the Critical Transitions: Writing and the Question of Transfer Conference at Elon University.

In March of 2013, we presented additional findings at the Conference on College Composition and Communication.

Also in March, Neal Lerner presented on the Project at Salem State University.

More was presented about the Meaningful Writing Project at the Higher Education Teaching and Learning Conference in January 2013.

Preliminary results from Northeastern University were also presented on a panel titled “The Advanced Writing in the Disciplines Course: Merging Critical and Disciplinary Thinking” at Quinnipiac University’s Fourth Biennial Conference on Critical Writing and Thinking, November 17, 2012.

Preliminary findings were presented at the International Writing Across the Curriculum conference, June 2012.


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