Across the Disciplines, a refereed journal devoted to language, learning, and academic writing, publishes articles relevant to writing and writing pedagogy in all their intellectual, political, social, and technological complexity. Across the Disciplines shares the mission of the WAC Clearinghouse in making information about writing and writing instruction freely available to members of the CAC, WAC, and ECAC communities.

Table of Contents for Volume 16, January through December 2019

Issue 3 (Special Issue: From the Margins to the Centre: Writing Across the Curriculum in Australia and New Zealand)

Guest editors: Susan Thomas, University of Sydney, Karen Vered, Flinders University, and Lisa Emerson, Massey University

The histories and pedagogies surrounding writing and literacy studies in Australasia are complex, given a diversity of theoretical approaches and little consensus on regional (or national) priorities. Despite more than thirty years of advocacy by scholars in Australia and New Zealand, writing and literacy are all but invisible disciplines in Australasia, and the focus is often more on remediation than on anticipating students' literacy needs as an integral aspect of their learning. With an ever-increasing focus on globalization and sustainability, however, discussions around writing as a meaning-making practice and a way of being in the world have never been more timely. Responding to this impetus, in late 2016, Karen Orr Vered (Flinders University), in consultation with colleagues Rowena Harper (University of South Australia) and Susan Thomas (University of Sydney), brought together a group of scholars from across Australia and New Zealand to share their individual and institutional perspectives on the directions that student literacy development in Australasia might take next and to describe what the horizon looks like from different positions within universities across Australia and New Zealand. From the "Margins to the Centre: The Future of University Literacy Support and Writing across the Curriculum" was a one-day symposium hosted by Flinders University to showcase and interrogate a variety of boundary-crossing, collaborative, whole-of-institution approaches to student literacy development, and the policies behind them. The papers in this special issue, case studies exploring how a theoretical or pedagogical approach has been implemented in the Australasian context, represent just some of the work to come out of that symposium.


From the Margins to the Centre: Whole-of-Institution Approaches to University-Level Literacy and Language Development in Australia and New Zealand
Karen Orr Vered, Flinders University, Susan Thomas, University of Sydney, and Lisa Emerson, Flinders University

From the Margins to the Centre: Reflections on the “Past-Present-Future” of Literacy Education in the Academy
Alisa Percy, University of Wollongong

On the Borderline: Writing about Writing, Threshold Concepts of Writing, and Credit-Bearing Academic Writing Subjects in Australia
Andrew Johnson, Monash University

Skills for Citizenship? Writing Instruction and Civic Dispositions in Aotearoa New Zealand
Hannah Gerrard, Massey University

Experiences of Publishing in English: Vietnamese Doctoral Students’ Challenges and Strategies
Thi Van Yen Hoang and Lai Ping Florence Ma, Macquarie University, Australia

Using Shared Inquiry to Develop Students’ Reading, Reasoning, and Writing in the Disciplines
Sandra Egege and Karen Orr Vered, Flinders University

The WAC-driven Writing Center: The Future of Writing Instruction in Australasia?
Susan Thomas, The University of Sydney

Issue 2 (January through June)

Featured Articles:

How STEM Majors' Evaluations of Quantitative Literacy Relate to Their Imagined STEM-Career Futures
Justin Nicholes, University of Wisconsin-Stout

Framed by future-selves motivational theory, the present study explored intersections of STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) students’ evaluations of everyday and disciplinary quantitative literacy (QL) and how students imagined their STEM-related, future career selves. A quantitative design using data set-appropriate Spearman’s rho tests of association was used. Results showed that students’ evaluations of everyday QL correlated positively with evaluations of disciplinary QL and that evaluations of both everyday and disciplinary QL correlated positively with how strongly they imagined using and writing about numbers in future STEM-related careers. This study establishes patterns to understand and direct future research and guide first-year composition and WAC/WID practice with QL components.

Sprinting toward Genre Knowledge: Scaffolding Graduate Student Communication through "Sprints" in Finance and Engineering Courses
Lindsey Ives, Jayendra S. Gokhale, William C. Barott, Michael V. Perez, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

This article evaluates the use of biweekly deadlines called “Sprints” to scaffold the development of conference papers in graduate-level courses in econometric modeling and electrical engineering through analysis of faculty assessment reports, observation notes, and transcripts of two audio-recorded class sessions. The authors found that Sprints provide consistent opportunities for students to provide and receive helpful formative feedback that builds disciplinary genre knowledge in each of the four dimensions. They conclude by recommending strategies for maximizing Sprints’ benefits while minimizing potential drawbacks in graduate courses across disciplines.

Writing in the Disciplines and Student Pre-professional Identity: An Exploratory Study
James Croft, Michael Benjamin, Phyllis Conn, Joseph M. Serafin, and Rebecca Wiseheart, St. John’s University

This study examines student perceptions about (i) whether writing in undergraduate disciplines contributes to the development of student pre-professional identity (PPI) and (ii) how writing in such disciplines affects PPI relative to other classroom activities. Findings suggest that writing in undergraduate courses can affect student PPI. Further, the extent to which writing contributes to PPI relative to other course activities appears to be related to four things: whether the course was in the student’s major; how professionally authentic the students perceived the writing in the course to be relative to other course activities; the extent to which the instructor works through the disciplinary writing process with the students; and the extent to which the student already has a PPI.


A Review of Sustainable WAC: A Whole Systems Approach to Launching and Developing Writing Across the Curriculum Programs, Michelle Cox, Jeffrey R. Galin, and Dan Melzer. (2018). Urbana, Illinois: NCTE. 272 pages. [ISBN 9780814149522]

A review by Jill Parrott, Eastern Kentucky University

A Review of Leading Academic Change: Vision, Strategy, Transformation, Elaine P. Maimon. (2018). Sterling, Virginia: Stylus. 180 pages. [ISBN 9781620365670]

A review by Caitlin Martin, Miami University

Issue 1 (Special Issue: Contemplative Writing Across the Disciplines)

Guest editors: Marlowe Miller, University of Massachusetts, Lowell, and Karolyn Kinane, University of Virginia

This issue focuses on the use of contemplative writing as a practice (or set of practices) used in the context of writing across the curriculum and in the disciplines. As explored in the essays within this issue, contemplative writing is most commonly one aspect of carefully constructed contemplative pedagogies and integrated into classes in scaffolded and deliberate ways that might encourage nonjudgmental awareness, embodied or spiritual experience, honor for the interconnectedness of all beings, and more. Most of the scholars in this issue speak of contemplative writing as a practice, much like one might speak of prayer or meditation as a practice. The scholars included in this special issue are building a broader definition of contemplative writing as they offer additional wisdom about contemplative writing and metacognition, contemplative writing and grading, contemplative research writing, and much more.


Contemplative Writing Across the Disciplines
Marlowe Miller, University of Massachusetts, Lowell, and Karolyn Kinane, University of Virginia

The Place of Practice in Contemplative Pedagogy and Writing
Karolyn Kinane, University of Virginia

Building a Contemplative Research Writing Course: Theoretical Considerations, Practical Components, Challenges, and Adaptability
Nadia Francine Zamin, Fairfield University

Using Mindfulness as a Heuristic for Writing Evaluation: Transforming Pedagogy and Quality of Experience
Jennifer Consilio and Sheila M. Kennedy, Lewis University

Writing Into Awareness: How Metacognitive Awareness Can Be Encouraged Through Contemplative Teaching Practices
Kate Chaterdon, Marist College

Contemplation as Kairotic Composure
Kurt Stavenhagen, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, and Timothy R. Dougherty, West Chester University of Pennsylvania

Note: If you would like to serve as guest editor for a special issue, or if you would like to suggest a topic for a special issue, please contact Michael Pemberton, editor, at or (912) 478-1383.