Integrating Writing into a Studio-Based Curriculum

Well, the second workshop that I organised for the HEA series of Writing in Creative practice was yesterday – and it went quite well again! However, as I was more involved with facilitating/presenting I didn’t actually get the chance to do my own concertina book, so don’t have any pictures for my reflection – hopefully some of the other participants will post some in the future, a first account can be found on Lisa’s blog.

This workshop was a bit more theoretical than the first one, with a key presentation by Dr. Fiona English who talked about her work with student writing and genre (published as a book I would very much recommend, it’s a bit pricey at the moment, but apparently Continuum is planning to bring out a paperback version so Fiona’s advice if you want the book at an affordable price is to call up Continuum and ask when the paperback version is coming out…).

To get delegates in the mood we started with the deconstructing/reconstructing text activity that Sarah and I had tried out (as described in the previous post) and there were some really interesting ‘poems’ created. Unfortunately the photography student I had booked again was too busy with his final degree show so I don’t have any pictures yet, but hope to provide some soon.

We then had a session with Jane Ball, academic writing skills tutor at the study skills centre at Staffordshire University, talking about ways to engage students with writing, which was followed by a lively discussion.

Fiona’s presentation was after lunch, and included delegates reading extracts from two different pieces of writing by the same student: an academic genre and the same piece re-genred into a play. We had a chance to try to analyse the shift that took place and what was gained and lost in this shift.

We ended with me sharing some ideas of writing as part of creative, practice-orientated tasks and assignments, not unlike the alternative presentations I have blogged about here previously, and I will try to post more details soon.

While we were battling the heat (the only room I could get during ‘exam season’ was in full sunlight, who would have thought the weather would turn out that nice?), it was a lively day and delegates from a number of universities were sharing their experiences and brainstorming to find ways to overcome the challenges we all seem to face.

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