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Advising Writers for Thesis and
Dissertation Success
Photo: Flickr Creative Commons WOCintech Chat
To download the handouts and
follow along go to:
scholar-studio.com/
teaching-resources.html
Why think about
graduate students
as writers?
Photo: Flickr Creative Commons WOCintech Chat
Writing is a constellation of skills
that are necessary (though not
sufficient) for completing a
graduate degree.
Photo: F...
You may find yourself thinking
graduate students should
already know how to write.
“Academic discourse
is a ‘second’ language
to everyone.”(Casanave, 2014 p. 23)
Supporting writing is the
pedagogical equivalent
of universal design.
•Promote equity
• Promote completion
• Reduce time-to-degree
Effective writing advising can:
(Simpson, Ruecker, Carrejo, F...
Advising Roles
Photo: Flickr Creative Commons user WOCintech Chat
• Intellectual and
professional advisor
• Gatekeeper
• Feedback-giver
• Project coach
• Affective /
psychosocial support
(...
Which roles are you are most and
least comfortable playing?
Which roles do you feel your
advisees expect you to play?
Do y...
Principles for supporting
graduate student writers
Learning to write as a
part of a discipline is
an iterative, long-
term process.
(Sundstrom 2014; Simpson 2012; Swales, 19...
Students need
multiple points of
contact with writing
instruction and
support.
(Sundstrom 2014; Simpson 2012; Rose &
McCla...
When we share the work of
teaching and supporting writing
throughout graduate education,
we reduce pressure on thesis
advi...
Collaborate with resources
across campus
• Writing center
• Learning resources center
• Student health and counseling cent...
Working with students
as writers
Provide annotated thesis
or dissertation samples.
Ask students to “code”
the rhetorical features of
writing in their field.
See the Coding Rhetorical Features in Academic W...
See the Research Instrument Matrix Handout
Encourage writing
as a tool to process
reading.
See Two Ways of Using Writing to Process Writing Handout
Writing can be a difficult
medium in which to give
feedback on writing…
For every draft, ask students
to submit a summary of
what they have done,
and ask, “What kind of
feedback would be helpful...
Focus on big ideas and structure
in early drafts.
Spend less energy on sentence-
level issues unless they impede
comprehen...
Ask students to respond to
your feedback in writing
with every draft. Ask them
to include questions about
your feedback.
Create clear, helpful
boilerplate text to explain
issues you encounter over
and over in student work.
Create personal or
departmental rubrics to
help articulate what
“excellent, good, and
emerging” skills look like.
Use oral feedback as part
of the advising process
because…
…speech is fast
and data rich.
Use Jing or other screencapture software to give
oral feedback on texts.
Paste the Jing links into comments in Word.
The s...
Narrate your experience
as a reader.
“I follow you / I lose you”
Remember to explain what works
(students need to hear this too).
Productive Advising
Meetings
Encourage students to
record meetings.
Take session notes for yourself
as a memory aid and way to
think through advising issues.
See Advising Meeting Template
Use active listening / mirroring
as a tool for instigating
reflection and clarification.
“Write Here,
Write Now”
Use meetings to go over
written feedback.
Recap meeting highlights and
identify goals and deadlines.
Do not accept
speech for
writing.
(no matter how
eloquent) Teachable stock photo
Helping students
structure their workflow
Set regular goals.
Ask for weekly writing
(you don’t have to read
all of it).
Encourage the use
of timed writing
And free writing.
Help students find external
structure and accountability:
• Agree on deadlines
• Use productivity technology
• Encourage p...
Communicate
your
feedback
timeframe
Recommended Reading
Photos by me and by permission of the Flickr Creative Commons Commercial Attribution License.
THANK YOU
For information ab...
Advising Writers for Thesis and Dissertation Success
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Advising Writers for Thesis and Dissertation Success

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Few faculty members have the opportunity to reflect on the many roles that thesis and dissertation advisors play or to build skills around supporting students as disciplinary writers. This workshop gives suggestions for ways to make advising more pleasurable and productive. For information about bringing this and other workshops to your campus, go to http://www.scholar-studio.com/writing-consulting.html or email info@scholar-studio.com

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Advising Writers for Thesis and Dissertation Success

  1. 1. Advising Writers for Thesis and Dissertation Success Photo: Flickr Creative Commons WOCintech Chat
  2. 2. To download the handouts and follow along go to: scholar-studio.com/ teaching-resources.html
  3. 3. Why think about graduate students as writers? Photo: Flickr Creative Commons WOCintech Chat
  4. 4. Writing is a constellation of skills that are necessary (though not sufficient) for completing a graduate degree. Photo: Flickr Creative Commons user WOCintech Chat
  5. 5. You may find yourself thinking graduate students should already know how to write.
  6. 6. “Academic discourse is a ‘second’ language to everyone.”(Casanave, 2014 p. 23)
  7. 7. Supporting writing is the pedagogical equivalent of universal design.
  8. 8. •Promote equity • Promote completion • Reduce time-to-degree Effective writing advising can: (Simpson, Ruecker, Carrejo, Florez, & Gonzalez 2016; Sundstrom 2016)
  9. 9. Advising Roles Photo: Flickr Creative Commons user WOCintech Chat
  10. 10. • Intellectual and professional advisor • Gatekeeper • Feedback-giver • Project coach • Affective / psychosocial support (Deuchar 2008; Spillett & Moisiewicz 2004)
  11. 11. Which roles are you are most and least comfortable playing? Which roles do you feel your advisees expect you to play? Do you experience tension between roles? Investigate See the Advising Reflection Worksheet
  12. 12. Principles for supporting graduate student writers
  13. 13. Learning to write as a part of a discipline is an iterative, long- term process. (Sundstrom 2014; Simpson 2012; Swales, 1990)
  14. 14. Students need multiple points of contact with writing instruction and support. (Sundstrom 2014; Simpson 2012; Rose & McClafferty 2001; Mullen 2001)
  15. 15. When we share the work of teaching and supporting writing throughout graduate education, we reduce pressure on thesis advising.
  16. 16. Collaborate with resources across campus • Writing center • Learning resources center • Student health and counseling center • Professional development office
  17. 17. Working with students as writers
  18. 18. Provide annotated thesis or dissertation samples.
  19. 19. Ask students to “code” the rhetorical features of writing in their field. See the Coding Rhetorical Features in Academic Writing Worksheet
  20. 20. See the Research Instrument Matrix Handout
  21. 21. Encourage writing as a tool to process reading. See Two Ways of Using Writing to Process Writing Handout
  22. 22. Writing can be a difficult medium in which to give feedback on writing…
  23. 23. For every draft, ask students to submit a summary of what they have done, and ask, “What kind of feedback would be helpful at this point?”
  24. 24. Focus on big ideas and structure in early drafts. Spend less energy on sentence- level issues unless they impede comprehension.
  25. 25. Ask students to respond to your feedback in writing with every draft. Ask them to include questions about your feedback.
  26. 26. Create clear, helpful boilerplate text to explain issues you encounter over and over in student work.
  27. 27. Create personal or departmental rubrics to help articulate what “excellent, good, and emerging” skills look like.
  28. 28. Use oral feedback as part of the advising process because…
  29. 29. …speech is fast and data rich.
  30. 30. Use Jing or other screencapture software to give oral feedback on texts. Paste the Jing links into comments in Word. The student gets a mini-video where you point out and narrate textual issues.
  31. 31. Narrate your experience as a reader.
  32. 32. “I follow you / I lose you”
  33. 33. Remember to explain what works (students need to hear this too).
  34. 34. Productive Advising Meetings
  35. 35. Encourage students to record meetings.
  36. 36. Take session notes for yourself as a memory aid and way to think through advising issues. See Advising Meeting Template
  37. 37. Use active listening / mirroring as a tool for instigating reflection and clarification.
  38. 38. “Write Here, Write Now”
  39. 39. Use meetings to go over written feedback.
  40. 40. Recap meeting highlights and identify goals and deadlines.
  41. 41. Do not accept speech for writing. (no matter how eloquent) Teachable stock photo
  42. 42. Helping students structure their workflow
  43. 43. Set regular goals.
  44. 44. Ask for weekly writing (you don’t have to read all of it).
  45. 45. Encourage the use of timed writing And free writing.
  46. 46. Help students find external structure and accountability: • Agree on deadlines • Use productivity technology • Encourage peer support • Connect with campus resources
  47. 47. Communicate your feedback timeframe
  48. 48. Recommended Reading
  49. 49. Photos by me and by permission of the Flickr Creative Commons Commercial Attribution License. THANK YOU For information about talks and workshops for graduate students and faculty: scholar-studio.com/writing-consulting.html

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