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Collaboration is the process of learning from and working with others to achieve goals. As humans, we create new knowledge by engaging in dialog (e.g., scholarly conversations) and by co-authoring, peer reviewing and critiquing texts. Collaboration is a highly prized workforce competency: employers rank collaboration and teamwork as the second most important competency college graduates need to succeed in the workplace.

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Design is a powerful mode of communication, a form of visual language, a semiotic system—& more. Learn about 7 design definitions so you can use design principles to develop texts, products, and services. Knowledge of design principles and processes can empower you to communicate clearly and persuasively.    

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tiny tin men made from old parts


Genres are much more than a classification scheme for sorting texts and commonplace responses to recurring situations: they are a form of literacy, a rhetorical tool of communication that informs composing and interpretation. Learn how to develop your genre knowledge to communicate clearly and persuasively.

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These warnings to stay on the footpath to avoid injury are intended to help hikers avoid injury. Likewise grammars are intended to help understand one another. Shared grammars, shared vocabularies, are a prerequisite to communication.


Grammar refers to the rules and conventions that inform how people use signs (e.g., body language, oral, written, and visual language) to communicate. Learn to identify grammatical problems with your writing and the writing of others.

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Information Literacy: Travelers in line at an airport reading signs as they enter another country.

Information Literacy

Information Literacy refers to a cluster of competencies associated with consuming, evaluating, producing, using, and archiving information. Knowledge of information literacy practices, perspectives, and strategies is a prerequisite for critical literacy, clarity, and persuasiveness in communication.

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Invention is the act of creation, the Eureka moment. Writers, entrepreneurs, and product developers experience the act of invention when they compose, write, and draft texts.  Explore strategies and heuristics to develop your creative potential.

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Mindset can be learned: just as these dogs have learned to line up in the I formation when visiting with the buffalo


Mindsets are ways of perceiving and acting in the world. The mindsets you hold, consciously or subconsciously, shape how you feel, think, and act; your sense of identity and belonging; what you believe is possible. Review research and scholarship on mindset. Learn to coach yourself, to avoid unnecessary negativity and anxiety when writing. Explore how to adopt the habits of mind employed by successful writers, entrepreneurs, and product managers.

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MLA Handbook, 9th Edition

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Organization is a rhetorical act, a pattern of discourse, an interpretive framework, a cognitive schema, a way of thinking, an attribute of prose. Learn to organize information clearly & persuasively. Explore the organizational schemas that people use to communicate. Review research and scholarship on organization.

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Publication Manual of the APA: 7th Edition

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Research refers to people's efforts to learn about a topic and develop new knowledge. People engage in research to learn about the scholarly conversations on a topic, to identify gaps in knowledge, to identify needed research, and to develop new solutions for problems. Learn how to solve problems at work, school, and home. Learn how to test knowledge claims using informal, qualitative, quantitative, textual, and mixed research methods.

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Revision: pic of a chrysalis transforming into a butterfly


Revision refers to the cognitive and intuitive processes writers employ when rereading a draft of a text and considering ways to rewrite it. Professional writers consider revision to be an opportunity to develop their thinking—an opportunity to problem solve, to be creative, to re-envision, to find the jewels within all the tangled, half-formed sentences. Learn about the role of revision in the writing process.  

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Rhetoric concerns perception, interpretation, and communication


Rhetoric is a theory of human communication. Rhetorical knowledge can help you interpret information, make strategic decisions, and communicate. Rhetorical knowledge informs rhetorical analysis and rhetorical reasoning, two critical literacy processes. 

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a child sports stylish sunglasses / Moxley photo of street art


Style is how a text is composed — its diction, grammar, use of mechanics, sentence structure, and style of writing — as opposed to what a text means or says. View style definitions, synonyms, and importance. Learn how to develop an appropriate style for a particular rhetorical situation.  

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NASA astronaut writing on the job

Workplace Writing

This article introduces workplace writing as an umbrella term that encompasses written and visual communication within sites of work—an activity that students across academic majors will need to accomplish in their careers.

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Writing Studies

Writing Studies is an academic subject of study with B.S., B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. programs in the United States. Writing Studies is an interdisciplinary field, with investigators coming from a multitude of academic and professional fields, including English studies, communication, the learning sciences, corpus linguistics, rhetoric, composition, and English Education.

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Writing Commons

Conducting a Spatial Analysis through the Lens of Universal Design

The sign in this image reads, “WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE ENTRANCE AVAILABLE, PLEASE ASK INSIDE FOR ASSISTANCE.” Obviously, this picture was taken and turned into a meme because someone thought it was funny, which it is. But is it just funny, or does it reveal a deeper message about the way our society thinks about people with disabilities? What does this meme actually tell us? It tells us this building has been retrofitted with an alternative wheelchair accessible entrance, and its proprietors went so far as to post a sign with this information. However, the proprietors

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So Your Instructor is Using Contract Grading…

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Working Through Revision: Rethink, Revise, Reflect

 What is revision? How can it help me improve my writing? Read about what revision is and how to solicit, interpret, and implement feedback that helps you make positive changes to your work.

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You want me to do what to my paper? Interpreting your professors’ feedback

Feedback is one of the major components of effective writing. Professional technical writers may get feedback from clients or members of their target audience before producing a deliverables; creative writers may ask other writers they trust or a sample of their target demographic to provide feedback; and workplace writers may receive feedback from their boss or coworkers before releasing the final version of a draft. What these writers know is that feedback provides an invaluable opportunity to understand the needs and perceptions of their audiences, so it’s important to take that information into account to produce a rhetorically sound final product. The purpose of this article is to walk you through some common comment types, and help you respond effectively to improve your writing.

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