Bright Future: A Review of the Sixth National Writing Across the Curriculum Conference

– Reviewed by Dan Melzer, April 28, 2002
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This year's National Writing Across the Curriculum conference, "Writing the Future: Leadership, Policies, and Classroom Practices," held March 7-9 at Rice University in Houston, Texas, reflected the growing influence of the WAC movement. Presenting at the conference were not only WAC scholars and practitioners, but also business leaders, politicians, and university administrators. Linda Driskill and the rest of the conference organizers should be applauded for organizing a conference that put those of us in WAC in dialogue with wider business and political communities, a critical move if WAC is to continue to grow.

Rather than formal addresses by outstanding scholars, the conference featured groups of distinguished panelists conversing on key issues, such as the future of WAC, integrating K-12 Writing, and enhancing WAC through technology and intellectual property provisions. Panelists included established WAC theorists such as Art Young, Elaine Maimon, Susan McLeod, Chris Anson, and Michael Pemberton; business leaders such as Ed Segner, President of EOG Resources, Inc., and Daniel Chavez, President of Grupo Vidafel; and educational leaders such as Carol Geary Schneider, President of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, and Scott Hochberg, Texas State Representative. Some clear themes emerged from these conversations: the importance of communicating in all disciplines and at all levels, from kindergarten to the workplace; the need to teach students to communicate effectively and sensitively in a multicultural world; and the need for awareness of new technologies and new intellectual property provisions among WAC theorists and practitioners.

Recurring themes in the general panel sessions included WAC and distance education, WAC and writing center connections, discipline-specific writing and WAC, and WAC and assessment. The quality and variety of these panels spoke to the breadth and depth of WAC in the year 2002, and the ever-widening circle of those taking an interest in WAC, from scholars to business leaders to politicians, point to a hopeful future for the conference and the WAC movement.

Publication Information: Melzer, Dan. (2000). Bright future: A review of the Sixth National Writing Across the Curriculum Conference. Academic.Writing. https://wac.colostate.edu/aw/reviews/wac_2002.htm
Publication Date: May 7, 2002


Contact Information:
Dan Melzer's Email: dlm6871@garnet.acns.fsu.edu

Copyright © 2002 Dan Melzer. Used with permission.