Welcome to the 4th Edition of Writing Commons!

We are an international community of writers, teachers, and researchers (see About). We are passionate about helping writers realize their potential in work and school contexts: Collaboration, Courses, Editing, Genre, Information Literacy, Invention, Mindset, Organization, Process, Research, Rhetoric, Revision, Style, Writing Studies.

Please contact Sandy Branham (branhac1@erau.edu) if you are having difficulty locating any articles while the site is under construction.

Collaboration

  • Master the interpersonal competencies prized by employers, such as goal setting, planning, task coordination, conflict resolution, and performance monitoring competencies.
  • Work productively with co-authors, teams, peer editors, teachers, and bosses.
  • Learn to negotiate and manage workplace conflicts, such as those that occur when co-authoring or working on a team.
  • Strategically select co-authors and adopt strategies for fostering successful co-authorship.
  • Accept critique professionally rather than personally.
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Genre

  • Reduce ambiguity by learning how to analyze how others have written about similar rhetorical situations.
  • Understand the conventions and values undergirding academic, business, scientific, and literary genres.
  • Identify rhetorical situations that call for mixing genres.
  • Improve your analytical competencies, particularly pattern recognition.
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Information Literacy

  • Be conscious of when you need information.
  • Learn to adeptly research information to inform and solve problems, entertain, or persuade.
  • Critically evaluate information (e.g, distinguish fake news from real news).
  • Be aware of ethical and unethical uses of information, including plagiarism.
  • Strategically weave sources into your text without undermining your purpose or losing your intended voice or tone.
  • Establish the credibility of your sources for your audience. Avoid patchwriting.
  • Cite sources correctly.
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Invention

  • Avoid bad habits: worrying, procrastinating, or expecting a perfect first-draft.
  • Realize your potential to innovate, to be creative, and to disrupt the status quo by engaging in the following invention strategies: drafting, invention heuristics, and preliminary research.
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Mindset

  • Affirm and invest in yourself.
  • Embrace your potential.
  • Assume authority over your learning and development as a writer.
  • Become more productive, articulate, and creative by adopting the attitudes, habits, strategies, and actions of successful communicators as they work to complete writing tasks.
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Organization

  • Enhance the unity, clarity, and persuasiveness of your writing by explicitly considering its logical structure.
  • Refine your thesis or research question so readers understand the focus and significance of your work
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Processes

  • Replace doubt with believing, a fixed mindset with a growth mindset, by learning about how successful writers manage difficult writing tasks. For instance, early in the writing process, understand how a rhetor adjusts point of view and rhetorical stance in response to the rhetorical situation; how the rhetor should trust that fluency proceeds correctness–that writing is a generative act, a way of thinking.
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Research

  • Master the methods Communities of Practitioners use to generate, debate, vet, and report knowledge claims.
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Rhetoric

  • Learn to evaluate your rhetorical situation:
    • analyze your audience’s knowledge and attitudes about your topic
    • clarify your purpose (e.g., to inform? to persuade? to entertain?)
    • adopt a Stance, Persona, and Style appropriate to your audience and purpose;
  • Appeal to Logos, Pathos, and Ethos so readers can follow your logic, be personally engaged and inspired to act on your message, and trustful of you as a reliable source
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Style

  • Keep your readers engaged by crafting your unique style.
  • Edit your documents for clarity, focus, and persuasiveness.
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Writing Studies

  • Inform how you write, how you view yourself as a writer, and how you evolve as a writer by learning about research, scholarship and theory in Writing Studies.
  • Do a deep dive into theory that informs Writing Commons.
  • Consider the rich interdisciplinary scholarship that informs work in Writing Studies.
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