Georgetown University Writing Program
Since its founding in 1981, the Georgetown Writing Program has shaped its signature mission and philosophy around the notion of writing as intellectual work: not simply a medium of communication, but a particular mode of inquiry located at the heart of a vital curriculum. Our Program is rooted in the conviction of its founder, James F. Slevin, that “the way students write reflects the way they think, their fundamental relation to what they are studying, the function and meaning of language in their lives.”
Resources for faculty who teach first-year writing or who address writing in courses within the major are available at Georgetown Writing Initiatives.
Georgetown students take two Humanities and Writing courses as part of their general education requirement. Humanities and Writing I, normally taken in a student’s first year, is a small, writing-intensive seminar that encourages students to think critically about the texts they read and write. The second course, Humanities and Writing II, introduces students to written discourse in the context of a specific humanities discipline.
The Georgetown M.A. program trains students in the teaching of writing through a combination of coursework, direct individual and group mentoring from faculty, and hands-on, practical experience in apprentice-teaching and peer-tutoring settings. Students have the opportunity to take graduate-level courses on writing, rhetoric, and the teaching of writing. Graduates of our program go on to doctoral studies in rhetoric and writing as well as to teaching positions at local colleges, public and private schools, and community organizations.
The Georgetown University Writing Center is a free resource open to all enrolled Georgetown students. Graduate and undergraduate students trained in teaching writing assist students from every program (graduate, undergraduate, School of Continuing Studies, and summer programs) at any stage of the composing process.
In 2010, the Georgetown University Writing Program and the Center for New Designs in Learning and Scholarship (CNDLS) launched the Georgetown Student Writing Study to assess student writing across the university. Although the study was part of a larger assessment project for Georgetown’s Middle States accreditation, the benefits of the project have extended beyond these original requirements. What started out as an assessment project now provides a robust forum for pedagogical and curricular design and faculty development.
The BTI is a course design initiative to help faculty improve students' disciplinary thinking and deepen student engagement through writing. Faculty and graduate students from across the university participate in professional development activities to examine and assess their own pedagogy and, in consultation with CNDLS and the Writing Program, to make course interventions. In a variety of related fields and programs, Writing Program mentors work with graduate course assistants to support the teaching of writing across the campus.
Dr. Maggie Debelius, Associate Director and Director of the Writing Center
Dr. Matthew Pavesich, Associate Director
Dr. Norma Tilden, Associate Director
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