Academic Writing Template

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					Template for Moving Academic Department from Writing Intensive to Writing Across
Curriculum (WAC) Model.

Department: Business Division

Chairperson: Dr. Marianne Rexer

1. Where do you feel your department’s course offerings are strongest in providing writing
instruction to your majors?

BA 321                        BA356
BA/ACC/ENT 362                ACC162
BA 309                        ACC321
BA 354                        ACC331
ENT 321                       ENT 361

2.Describe the department’s proposed Writing Across the Curriculum strategy including how the
departments will assure that its graduates have competency in writing.

As described in the Department’s WAC philosophy statement” (see enclosure 1), “…the goal is to
provide a seamless structure of writing instruction and assignments that will cultivate in each student
the discipline and skill necessary for effective writing…”. Within that broad strategic goal are
several specific implied tasks to include:
        Identify departmental standards for “effective writing” (see enclosure 2 for Business
        Division’s Principles of Good Writing)
        Frequent and regular assessment of the effective writing standard via the Business Division’s
        Undergraduate Competencies Committee (BDUCC) (see enclosure 3)
        Frequent and regular feedback based on assessments
        Frequent and regular instruction of students in areas identified as needing improvement
        Faculty development (e.g., Departmental faculty will attend at least one writing instruction
        workshop a year)

The effect of these implied tasks will be a portfolio of writing experiences for each student,
beginning with the freshman year experience concluding with a capstone course and internship.
Throughout this writing-learning journey, students will have multiple experiences as they learn to
write individually, collaboratively, persuasively, and creatively, to name just a few. In summary, the
strategy is best described as an immersion experience, where learning to write is usually not at the
forefront of the experience, but rather happens at a secondary level in support of a particular course
experience, much as the individual course experience contributes to the larger undergraduate

3.What courses in the major that offer writing instruction work well to achieve the department’s
goals for writers in their junior and senior years? What does the department need to improve
instruction in writing in the discipline?
BA 354, BA 356, BA 361 BA 309, ENT 361, ENT 385, ACC 321, ACC 322, ACC 331. The
faculty and students will need to work closely to ensure the student has a systematic portfolio-
experience of writing/learning.

4.What are the primary markers for, or features of, competent writing in the major?
       The markers of competent writing will mirror what the department will measure, i.e., writing
       effectiveness. We will consider writing effectiveness the extent to which a student meets the
       Departmental Principles of Good Writing. We also feel that these markers will be
       incrementally spaced to match a student’s progress and improvement as s/he advances
       through the curriculum. For example, a second semester freshman might be expected to be
       able to write a one-page executive summary that is grammatically correct, free of spelling
       errors, concise and organized coherently. A senior student might be expected to be able to
       prepare a formal 10 page research paper on a complex subject with very little supervision.
       See enclosure 2 for Business Division’s Principles of Good Writing.

5.The WAC model works well when selected, required, courses within a discipline integrate writing
into their foundational course goals. Does your department offer such courses? Are these courses
sequenced adequately to allow students to proceed in a logical way to the fulfillment of the
markers/features you identified above?

The Integrated Management Experience (IME) and the Personal Professional Development (PPD)
programs are not only foundational courses, but indeed are specifically designed to quickly
indoctrinate the student into a learning atmosphere that is goal oriented, gradual, sequential, logical
and integrated. By integrated we the Department mean that a student is always responsible for his
or her conduct in and out of the classroom, that accounting homework, for example, will always be
free of grammar and spelling errors, that written work, no matter the content area, must be presented
in a cogent, logical and professional manner. In many ways, we have already implemented not only
a WAC model, but a Speaking Across the Curriculum model, a Leadership Across the Curriculum
model and a Professionalism Across the Curriculum model.

6.How will the department assess student writing effectiveness? What 2-3 specific learning
outcomes, in addition to the three now required, will be used to demonstrate student effectiveness?

The Business Division’s Undergraduate Competencies Committee (BDUCC) will have primary
oversight responsibility for assessing student writing effectiveness at the Departmental level.
However, the primary responsibility for assessing student writing effectiveness in the various writing
domains remains with the faculty at the course level. A description of the Business Division Writing
Domains is contained in enclosure 4. Enclosure 5 illustrates which courses cover the various writing

The specific learning outcomes will be students who can write a persuasive argument in the form of
an executive summary; an effective memo/letter which is written with clarity and precision; an
analytical report that demonstrates the ability to synthesize

7.Will the department allow its majors to take identified writing courses in another department to
satisfy department requirements?
Yes. Econ 101, Econ 102, Math 107, Comm 101, CS 115

We allow of course for the exceptional case (for example a transfer student) wherein some remedial
course may be required and such remediation may in fact be found by taking a course in a different

8.Does or will the department require writing in every course?

No: depends on instructor and nature of course

9.How will the capstone courses be used to culminate writing as well as other aspects of the
academic discipline?

Capstone: BA361 and ENT 361 applies all business skills, including marketing, finance, law,
accounting, management, etc.; writing is required. ACC362, BA 362 and ENT 362 apply skills in a
particular area of study; writing is required.

10.Has the department identified a sophomore and junior course that includes a designated writing
component? --Soph/Junior: BA321, BA351, BA309, BA354, ENT 321, ENT 385, ACC 321,

11.What currently designated Writing Intensive courses in the department will be dropped? If the
department drops current WI courses, how will that instruction be replaced?

--None: BA309, auditing, and taxes will continue in curriculum

12.What responsibility will the department take to grandfather current students or to move current
majors to the WAC model?
Grandfathering: current sophomores; i.e., 06-07 juniors will be advised to complete the writing
intensive program by May 07. Current juniors; i.e., seniors in 06-07 will be required to complete the
WI program; current first-year students; i.e., sophomores in 06-07 will follow the WAC model.

There will be a small number of students who will need to take a currently offered WI course in
another department, due to the limited number of free electives they have available vis-à-vis the
number of WI courses offered within the Business Division. Put simply, we feel all WI course
currently offered should continue through May 07.

13.At what date would the department wish to move to the proposed model?

       Fall 2006 _____X______

14.Are there any aspects of the department’s WAC strategy that can be implemented this year, after
approval is granted?

We anticipate implementing all aspects of our program beginning Fall 2006, pending final approval.
              Business Division’s Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) Proposal

WAC Philosophy:
The goal of the undergraduate programs of The Jay S. Sidhu School of Business and Leadership is to
provide a seamless structure of writing instruction and assignments that will cultivate in each student
the discipline and skill necessary for effective writing. This seamless experience will be
accomplished by incorporating all elements of the several writing domains identified by the
departmental faculty into various courses. Upon graduation every student will have experienced
significant instruction and practice in each of these domains. The Sidhu school approach is one of
total immersion in the craft of writing that takes place in the course’s core content. Our philosophy is
that the practice of writing effectively is woven into the day-to-day fabric of a student’s academic

                                                                     (Enclosure 1)
                          Business Division’s Principles of Good Writing

Purpose (Thesis and direction are clear):
      Who is the intended audience?
      What is the main point? For example, is the main point an argument or a debatable
      How clearly is the main point expressed?
      Does the writing as a whole address a clearly defined audience?

Organization (Ideas and support are developed one at a time systematically and logically):
      What are the main Divisions of Thought?
      Does their order match the essay's "blueprint" or organization step?
      Are the points covered in a discernible pattern, such as ascending, descending,
      or parallel order?
      Does the conclusion systematically summarize the essay's main divisions of thought and
      major subpoints in the same order as that of the essay?

Coherence (Conceptual links are provided between individual elements of the writing):
      Are key terms set up in the thesis/organization step and then repeated at the beginning of
      each major division of thought? Are they repeated again in the conclusion?
      Is a summary statement made at the conclusion of each of the major divisions of thought?
      Does the essay use such connective words as "First,. . . Second. . . "; "Finally"; "On the other
      hand"; "however"; “in spite of,”; “similarly”; “likewise”; “in addition”; “Furthermore”;

Support (All generalizations and conclusions are justified by logically presented evidence):
      Is each Division of Thought and each of the essay's generalizations supported with examples,
      illustrations, and specifics?
      Are the generalizations made about each point fully explained?
      Have you fully explained how each example illustrates or proves the essay's thesis or the
      paragraph's topic sentence?
      Are all quotations fully commented on and analyzed?

Clarity (Diction and syntax are precise; the writer has considered the reader’s understanding):
       Read your essay out loud--do you or your listener hear any unclear or awkward sentences?
       Is the essay's word choice unclear or inappropriate in any places? (If you have used a
       Thesaurus, be especially careful--those choices may possibly be inappropriate.) You know
       what you mean--will your reader?
       Are grammar, spelling, and mechanics correct?
                                                                            (Enclosure 2)
                          Business Division’s Principles of Good Writing

Insight (The writer has found creative ways to integrate, synthesize, and interpret challenging
        Does the essay synthesize, evaluate, and interpret the material presented?
        Is the essay creative or innovative in any ways?
        Are the thesis and arguments challenging?
        Does your work acknowledge and incorporate conventions of ethical presentation as
        addressed by your discipline?

         Are all borrowed words and ideas--even if they are paraphrased-- given full and proper
         Are references listed?
         Is this your own original work?

                                                                    (Enclosure 2, cont’d)
             Business Division Undergraduate Competencies Committee (BDUCC)

The Business Division faculty have agreed that in order to implement, monitor and maintain the
spirit and intent of the University’s Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) program a Business
Division Committee structure will be support those efforts.

Therefore, the organization, roles and responsibilities of the Business Division’s Undergraduate
Competencies Committee (BDUCC) are as follows:

Organization: The (BDUCC) shall be comprised of three full time faculty members. Members will
self-nominate or be nominated by others. As this is a new committee the first three members
appointed will serve for terms of one, two and three years respectively. Thereafter members will
serve for three years. This will help assure continuity as well as diversity.

Roles: The (BDUCC) will provide program oversight to ensure that the requirements of the WAC
model are being met at the Departmental level. The committee is charged with evaluating the WAC
system. Faculty will provide to the committee as required copies of syllabi, student writing samples
and any other materials the committee may need.

Responsibilities: The (BDUCC) shall meet not less than once a semester. The (BDUCC) will
submit an annual report no later than 1 April to the faculty outlining the Business Division’s WAC
initiatives to include areas of strength, weakness and any recommended changes or modifications.
Committee reports are not to be construed as binding, but rather as advisory and as such will be
received in the spirit of collegiality and professional development.

                                                                                (Enclosure 3)
A Formal Research Project or Paper adheres to the scientific method. It includes the systematic
collection of data, concept and theory and the explanation of them within a theme. It also requires
demonstrating proof of appropriate documentation standards such as literature research techniques
and data collection. A Formal Paper includes proper writing style that demonstrates the thorough
usage of all of the aforementioned skills.

An informal paper are those papers that rely on substance and creativity that may personalize issues
and does not include formal research. Examples include reaction and reflection papers, case
summaries, short answers, and journals.

Iterative assignments include writing and re-writing to develop a more coherent and grammatically
correct/acceptable paper. This process can be by the instructor, peers, or self reviews. The draft or
update method is used.

Creative Writing is writing about and supporting innovative and novel concepts or ideas including
creative problem solving. An example is case analysis

Technical Writing is any form of writing that has a prescribed format, such as portfolio analysis and
market analysis reports. It involves the appropriate use of vocabulary of a particular discipline.


The preferred style according to the meeting is APA. However style usage is also a function of the
particular course and therefore the assignment of style usage in those cases are determined by the
instructor. Students of the Sidhu School will follow the APA style for formal research papers and all
other writing assignments will follow the direction of the professor.

                                                                            (Enclosure 4)
Accounting Program

                Formal     Informal Iterative Creative Technical Style Usage
Course \ Domain Research   Paper Writing Writing Writing         (APA, etc.) Misc.
Acc 151 **                         X        X        X          X
Acc 152 **                         X        X        X          X
Acc 161
Acc 162                            X        X
Acc 201                    X
Acc 202                    X
Acc 301                    X
Acc 311         X                                               X
Acc 321         X                                    X          X
Acc 322         X                                    X          X
Acc 331                    X                         X                      X
Acc 341                    X
Acc 362 ***     X          X

** IME Sequence
*** Capstone
Business Administration Program

                Formal   Informal Iterative Creative Technical Style Usage
Course \ Domain Research Paper Writing Writing Writing         (APA, etc.) Misc.

BA 151 **                  X       X       X        X
BA152 **                   X       X       X        X
BA233                      X*                                              * Informal paper is optional
BA234                      X*                                              * Informal paper is optional
BA257               X                                                      2 Presentations
BA309               X      X       X       X        X         X
BA319                                                                      2 Presentations
BA321*              X      X
BA322               X      X       X       X                  X
BA328               X      X
BA341*              X                               X
BA343               X              X       X        X
BA351               X                      X
BA352               X              X                          X            Presentations
BA354               X              X                          X            Presentations
BA356               X      X                                  X
BA358               X                               X
BA361***            X      X                        X         X

* Course taken by
all majors
** IME Sequence
*** Capstone
Entrepreneurial Program

Course \       Formal     Informal Iterative   Creative   Technical Style Usage
Domain         Research   Paper    Writing     Writing    Writing   (APA, etc.) Misc.

ENT151 **                 X        X           X          X
ENT152 **                 X        X           X          X
ENT201        X                                                    X
ENT203                    X                    X
ENT252        X           X                    X                   X
ENT321        X                    X                      X
ENT342        X                                           X
ENT361***     X                    X                               X
ENT362                    X
ENT385        X                    X                      X        X

** IME Sequence
*** Capstone

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