MnSCU Conference on Composition


"English Composition: Crossing Lines, Forging Connections & Extending Opportunities"
MnSCU Conference on Composition
March 16 & 17, 2007
hosted by Century College

Keynote Speakers: Mike Palmquist, Colorado State University & Will Hochman, Southern Connecticut State University
Featured Speaker: Steven Pinker, Harvard University

Undergraduate education in the MnSCU system and across the country is in the midst of change. Due to the demands of shifting demographics and the growing presence of alternative methods of course delivery among others, composition teachers are exploring ways to collaborate with each other, with other faculty and staff across their campuses, and with members of a range of communities to improve the teaching and learning of writing.

For example, English faculty in the MnSCU system are crossing long-standing territorial boundaries in their institutions to revisit the roles of technology and information literacy in composition instruction, are renewing their energies to teaching writing skills that extend across and beyond the curriculum and are collaborating with numerous agencies and resources to re-examine the roles of assessment, support, and alternative pedagogies in composition. These changes have reinforced as they have redefined the roles of MnSCU English discipline faculty as advocates for writing instruction across their campuses and the MnSCU system as well as in national debates and forums.

This event provides a forum for all composition instructors to discuss initiatives, research projects, and emerging pedagogies in composition instruction. Participants have the chance to share different methods, pedagogies and styles in teaching composition, and learn about the ways that English faculty are collaborating in, crossing lines, and extending composition instruction.

Therefore, conference organizers seek both individual and panel proposals from all faculty members (full-time, adjunct, and teaching assistant) that address any aspect of teaching college composition, separately or together. Possible topics include the following:

Research on collaboration in composition
Composition theory and pedagogy
Developmental writing
Composition in the MnSCU divisions (technical, community and 4-year institutions)
Writing across the curriculum/writing-intensive courses
Computers and composition (computer-assisted and online instruction)
The teaching of composition to non-native speakers
The teaching of composition to non-traditional students
Transferability of skills/contents to future courses & work
Cross-institutional discussions/Influences among colleges or between high schools and colleges/universities
Working conditions/teaching loads/adjunct issues
Assessment practices as well as placement and exit procedures
Writing competencies
Diversity in the composition classroom
Service learning in the composition classroom

This discipline-specific conference is made possible with funds for Discipline/Program Workshops from the MnSCU Center for Teaching and

Learning with generous funding from the Office of the Chancellor; therefore, the registration fee is waived for MnSCU members and for all non-MnSCU presenters. The conference is open to anyone interested in college composition.

Please send a 500 word abstract with panel or paper proposal information including title of paper(s), and name, address, email, and affiliation of presenter(s) by February 15, 2007. Panels are scheduled for one hour with reading time for individual papers no more than 15 minutes. Send proposals via e-mail to Dr. Randall McClure, Department of English, Minnesota State University at