Writing Pedagogy to Accelerate Student Success as Disciplinary Writers/Thinkers

Abstract

A DOE report confirms what is anecdotally apparent to post-secondary educators: College students are less prepared for college-level academic work than they were pre-pandemic. Many first-year political science students lack basic writing skills necessary for success in the discipline. Instructors focus on covering content, while expecting students to produce quality written materials. Research shows that the amount of time students spend on writing assignments directly relates to their level of engagement in, interest in, and grasp of course content. This presentation focuses on writing pedagogy implemented in Introduction to IR. The pedagogy includes “Writer’s Workshops” that help students develop fundamental research and writing skills. Beyond traditional scaffolding assignments that focus on course content, these workshops build specific, tangible, and transferable writing skills, such as how to choose effective verbs, craft an interesting and accurate introduction and conclusion, and write an effective analysis. Outcomes include improved papers and increased confidence.

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