(re)Designing and (re)Making Writing Pedagogy: Reflections on a Design/Writing Collaboration


Authours: Emilie Brancato, Nancy Snow, Saskia van Kampen
Design studio pedagogies challenge our assumptions about how, when, and why students write in ways that align well with language learning pedagogies. This roundtable will be framed around notions of collaboration and the intersection of writing  and making discovered while introducing WAC practices into first-year studio courses.

Our pilot study revealed that our collaboration was not limited to faculty and writing specialist. The not-so-overt collaborator are the students through their unexpected and varied responses to the writing assignments, the work they produced, and the work of their peers. Reflecting upon the work of our students we identified knowledge gaps and revealed the assumptions we were making about the prior knowledges of the students. For example we identified the need for discipline specific vocabulary acquisition for both native and English language learners and writing skills specific to studio classroom because many of the students saw writing as “essay.” In response, we augmented our assignments and in-class assignments to writing that support idea generation, information gathering, language learning, and metacognition.

We will begin by showing our collaboratively developed writing approaches that support making and thinking in first-year design studio courses. In the spirit of collaboration, this roundtable invites participants to bring tangible student examples of making and writing

to contribute to a greater and actionable discussion on shifting pedagogical approaches. Participants can consider these five topics when choosing their samples for discussion: (1) Information gathering, (2) Idea generation, (3) Discipline-specific language acquisition, (4) Self-reflection and (5) Peer-to-peer critique.