Author: Michelle McMullin

From Our Conference Co-Chairs

We look forward to welcoming your to the 20th Annual Conference of the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing (ATTW), where we will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of the conference itself.

The city of Portland and the anniversary suggests a Kairotic moment to gauge our field’s depths and currents, forge new tributaries, and steward a sustainable future. This is where the theme of this year’s conference came from. “Celebrating 20—Retrospection and New Directions in Technical Communication,” acts as a call for collective disciplinary reflections and envisions, to relay the legacy of ambition, retrospection, and innovation, established from the founders of our field.

Thanks to your great submissions, we have thus compiled a conference program that includes 29 concurrent sessions, 2 workshops, and 20 posters. These presentations represent a wide variety of topics on technical communication research, pedagogy, and practice. We hope you will find this conference both inviting and invigorating.  

ATTW 2017 Program (PDF)

As the largest city, Bridgetown and seaport in Oregon, Portland provides the perfect platform for ATTW’s 20th anniversary conference by reminding us of the importance of connections across disciplines, campuses, research interests, and industries. While you create professional connections at the conference, we hope you can also take time to enjoy the many cultural and historical sites as well as wonderful cuisine and breweries offered by Portland.

Please register for the conference by Friday March 3, 2016. Onsite registration will be available, but will include a $25 onsite surcharge registration fee. Attendees may register online and pay at the door if necessary.

We look forward to seeing you in person and watching the new connections forged in Portland!

Huiling Ding and Huatong Sun
ATTW Conference Co-chairs

CPTSC 2017 Call For Proposals

Conference Theme: User-centered program design

When we think of programmatic issues, we often think about our program’s identity from an administrative perspective and focus on how institutional, governmental, social, economic, and situational forces influence and shape our programs. But as programs in technical, professional, and scientific communication, where we place a high value on user-centered design and user advocacy, we should also be thinking about our users. The primary users for our programs are, of course, students. For this year’s conference, we focus on how responding to student needs shapes our programs, according to three main areas: recruitment, retention & engagement, and graduation (career advancement).

Recruitment

Student recruitment is critical to the sustainability and life of any program. In examining recruitment, we seek to raise and answer questions about what factors contribute to students choosing technical and professional communication programs.

  • What are the demographics and characteristics of students who select our programs, and how do we address this target audience when we recruit?
  • How can we market our programs, both on our campus and in our communities, to attract a diverse range of students?
  • How can we use the service course to recruit students?
  • What are the needs of students from diverse populations, and how can we address these

    needs?

  • What stakeholders, venues, and locations can we reach out to in order to recruit students?
  • In what ways can we develop our faculty, curriculum, and infrastructure to attract students?
  • What are other effective strategies for recruiting students to our programs?
  • What are other effective strategies for building program identity and marketing programs to

    students?

Retention and Engagement

Engaging and retaining students is critical to program sustainability. In examining retention and engagement, we will explore both pedagogical and administrative practices.

  • What pedagogical practices contribute to retention and meeting student needs and how effective are these practices?
  • How does service learning, community engagement, and other experiential practices contribute to retention and engagement?
  • How do internships and other practices that prepare students to be successful in the job market or in their careers contribute to retention and engagement?
  • How can we use other practices such as advising, mentoring, extracurricular and sponsored activities to improve retention and engagement? What do these practices look like?
  • How does the use of technology serve students’ needs and contribute to retention? For example, do millennials use and learn technologies differently and what does this mean for our programs in terms of resource investment and curriculum? How do programs balance student needs and technology cost?
  • How do specific delivery modes (online, hybrid, and f2f) serve students’ needs and contribute to retention and engagement?
  • What can we learn from our students while they are still in our programs to help us better retain future students and meet their needs? What types of data from current students can help us both recruit students and prepare them for their future careers?

Continue reading “CPTSC 2017 Call For Proposals”

2017 ATTW Career Workshop

Since 2009, under the leadership of Richard Johnson-Sheehan and Lisa Meloncon, the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing (ATTW) has offered a successful Career Workshop at the annual conference. Each year, about 25 faculty members and 30 graduate students participate.

careerworkshop.JPG
ATTW 2016 career workshop in Houston, Texas

The workshop gives graduate students in Technical Communication, Professional Writing, Rhetoric, and Composition opportunities to meet with faculty from a variety of universities.

The workshop will be held at the ATTW Conference in Portland, OR on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 from 4:00 to 5:15 pm. (Rooms TBD.) The ATTW Conference meets at the DoubleTree by the Hilton Portland, 1000 NE Multnomah St.. (You can learn more about ATTW and the ATTW Conference at http://www.attw.org/conference).

The workshop format is “speed dating.” Graduate students and faculty members meet one-to-one in five minute segments, so they can share ideas, talk about the job market, and discuss preparing for the job search.

Graduate students:

The format gives you an opportunity to meet professors from other universities, discuss your career goals and learn more about their programs. You will also receive a helpful 20-page guide that will help you navigate the job search process from beginning to end.
Please RSVP to Lora Arduser by February 24. Then, bring a one-page CV and business cards that you can leave with people in the workshop and at the conference. You do not need to be registered for the conference to participate in the workshop, but we encourage you to join us for the day.
If you have questions, email Lora Arduser (lora.arduser@uc.edu) or Lisa Meloncon (lisa.meloncon@uc.edu).

Faculty:

This workshop is always fun, and it’s a good way to meet up-and-coming members of our field and potential members of the ATTW. Even if your program isn’t hiring next year, we could use your expertise and wisdom. There is no preparation. If you might be hiring, though, this workshop is a great way to meet the people who you might want to interview next year.
To volunteer, email Lora Arduser (lora.arduser@uc.edu) with your name and affiliation by February 24, 2017.
If you are unable to attend, please share this post with your graduate students who might be interested.

Call for Participation ATTW 2017 Research Methods Workshops

ATTW 2017 Research Methods Workshops

Portland, Oregon March 14, 2017 12:30-4:30
Application deadline: December 15th
Scholarships are available!
Visit attw.org for the call for participation and full workshop descriptions
The Research Methods Workshops are an initiative of the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing (ATTW) aimed at providing an opportunity for those entering the profession and those less trained in research to develop more sophisticated research skills.
This year, ATTW is sponsoring two Research Methods Workshops. Each workshop focuses on a methodology for data analysis and is designed to help researchers devise and try out an analytic approach.

Iconographic Tracking: A Digital Research Method for Circulation Studies

Laurie E. Gries, University of Colorado-Boulder

Conducting Quantitative Content Analysis

Ryan K. Boettger, University of North Texas

Have you collected so much content for your research that you don’t know how to analyze it all?
bottgerContent analysis (CA) is a powerful empirical method for analyzing texts, images, maps, sounds, and symbols. Briefly defined, CA is the systematic, objective, and quantitative analysis of message characteristics (Neuendorf 2016). Researchers then make inferences about the messages within the texts, the writer, and the audience. The applied nature of CA has made it popular with academics, commercial researchers, and communication practitioners. However, the method is often misapplied or mislabeled in fields like technical communication.
These two half-day workshops will be held in Portland, Oregon on Tuesday afternoon, March 14, 12:30-4:30. This is the day preceding the ATTW conference (March 15) and the CCCC conference (March 15-18).
Registration for each workshop is $100. Ten scholarships of $200 each are available to graduate students to defray the cost of the workshop and hotel.

Job Posting: two positions at Ithaca College

The Department of Writing at Ithaca College would like to announce two positions for which they are currently hiring;

Position descriptions and application instructions can be found at https://ithaca.peopleadmin.com. The application deadline for both positions is December 5, 2016.

Position 1:

The Department of Writing in the School of Humanities and Sciences at Ithaca College invites applications for a tenure-eligible position in professional writing beginning August 16, 2017. The successful candidate will carry a 3-3 teaching load, mostly in workplace writing but also in one or more of the following areas: technical writing, legal and public policy writing, science and environmental writing, and/or proposal and grant writing. They also will teach first-year composition as needed. Department/college service and student advising are expected.

We seek applicants with experience in one or more of the following areas: digital media, online teaching, editing and publishing, and/or internships and service learning. Because our students must learn to work in a multicultural, global society, we are particularly interested in candidates whose pedagogy and scholarship address issues of diversity, justice, and equity in the public, private, and/or nonprofit sectors.

Qualifications:

Master’s degree in Professional/Technical Writing, Composition & Rhetoric or relevant field; PhD preferred; demonstrated excellence in, and commitment to, undergraduate teaching; evidence of effective professional writing; and record or promise of scholarship required. A humanistic approach to the field is essential since our professional writing curriculum is grounded in the liberal arts and emphasizes rhetoric and ethics.

Position 2:

The Department of Writing in the School of Humanities and Sciences at Ithaca College invites applications for a three-year non-tenure-eligible position with the possibility of renewal beginning August 16, 2017. The successful candidate will carry a 3-4 teaching load and be responsible for 2-3 sections of Writing for the Workplace per semester, along with first-year composition and other professional writing courses as needed. Department/college service and student advising are expected.

We seek candidates with experience in one or more of the following areas: digital media, online teaching, editing and publishing, and/or internships and service learning. Because our students must learn to work in a multicultural, global society, we are particularly interested in applicants whose pedagogy addresses issues of diversity, justice, and equity in the public, private, and/or nonprofit sectors.

Qualifications:

Master’s degree in Professional/Technical Writing, Composition & Rhetoric or related field and demonstrated excellence in, and commitment to, undergraduate teaching required; PhD desired. Evidence of effective professional writing and a humanistic approach to the field are essential. Our practical curriculum is grounded in the liberal arts and emphasizes rhetoric and ethics.

Application Instructions:

Interested individuals should apply at https://ithaca.peopleadmin.com and attach a cover letter and CV. The applicant must also provide names and email addresses of three (3) individuals who will be asked to submit letters of reference. Emails containing a link to submit these letters will be auto-generated and sent to the applicant’s references upon final submission of application via ithaca.peopleadmin.com. Applications are not complete until all materials are received.

Inquiries about the position may be directed to the Department of Writing at 607-274-3138 at writing@ithaca.edu. Questions about the online application may be directed to the Office of Human Resources at 607-274-8000. Preliminary review of applications will begin immediately. Full review will start on December 5, 2016 and will continue until the position is filled.

About the Department of Writing

Ithaca College offers New York State’s only comprehensive B.A. in Writing. Blending theory and practice, our department seeks to foster clarity, invention, and expertise in various styles and genres. Students select from a diverse curriculum and may choose to concentrate in creative writing, nonfiction, feature writing, or professional writing. Diversity is also a core value of our department. We believe that writing as a discipline is enhanced when diverse groups of faculty with diverse backgrounds and ideas collaborate and learn from each other. Please visit us at www.ithaca.edu/hs/depts/writing.

About Ithaca College

Ithaca College, a comprehensive residential campus community of 6,500 students, offers a learning experience that combines the best of the liberal arts and professional education. We continually strives to build an inclusive and welcoming community of individuals, with diverse talents and skills from a multitude of backgrounds, who are committed to civility, mutual respect, social justice, and the free and open exchange of ideas.

Successful candidates will demonstrate an ability to teach in ways that value the varied learning needs and interests of a culturally diverse student population and that reflect a commitment to encouraging the success of all students.

Ithaca College is committed to building a diverse academic community and encourages members of underrepresented groups to apply. Experience that contributes to the diversity of the college is appreciated.
Comments: Queries about the position should be made not to me but directly to the department at 607-274-3138 or at writing@ithaca.edu.

Job posting: two positions at Portland State University

Job listings posted on behalf of Wint Tracy Dillon (dillont@pdx.edu)

The English Department at Portland State University would like your help in getting the word out about two available positions.

These positions can be found, along with application instructions, at https://jobs.hrc.pdx.edu/postings/21037. The application deadline for both positions is November 15, 2016.

Position 1:

The English Department at Portland State University invites applications for a tenure-track position as Director of Professional & Technical Writing to begin September 16, 2017 at the rank of Assistant or Associate Professor. We seek an active scholar with a record of P&TW research who can contribute to the department by teaching core courses in our undergraduate and graduate degree programs, directing the MA/MS program in Professional & Technical Writing, and providing other courses in support of the English and University Studies curricula.

Required specialization in science and/or environmental writing; this position is part of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences’ interdisciplinary cluster hire focusing on Environmental Extremes (impacts, adaptations, and solutions) including seven additional faculty members in the Departments of Communication, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Geography, and Environmental Science and Management. See the Faculty Cluster hire ad at http://www.pdx.edu/clas/faculty-job-openings for all eight positions.

Preferred qualifications include Professional & Technical Writing related industry experience. ABD’s considered. Ph.D. in English, Rhetoric, Technical Communication, or a related field is required by September 15, 2017. 2/2/2 course load (quarter system); course releases for service as director; competitive salary; excellent benefits.

Position 2:

The English Department at Portland State University invites applications for a non-tenure track faculty (NTTF) position as Instructor or Senior Instructor I of Professional & Technical Writing to begin September 16, 2017. We seek an active instructor who can contribute to the department by teaching core courses in our undergraduate and graduate degree programs, and providing other courses in support of the English and University Studies curricula.Required qualifications include Professional & Technical Writing related industry experience; preferred qualifications include specialization in at least one of the following areas: science writing, environmental writing, and/or medical writing. Master’s or Ph.D. in English, Rhetoric, Technical Communication, or a related field is required by time of appointment. 3/3/3 course load (quarter system); competitive salary; excellent benefits.

All materials must be received by November 15, 2016.

Brief Description of PSU’s English Department

A thriving campus in the heart of the city, Portland State University is Oregon’s most affordable public research university and we offer tremendous opportunity to 29,000 students from all backgrounds. Our mission to “let knowledge serve the city” reflects our dedication to finding innovative, sustainable solutions to local and global problems. Our location in the heart

of one of America’s most dynamic cities gives our students unmatched access to career connections and an internationally acclaimed culture scene. PSU is the only Oregon university to offer a four-year degree guarantee. The English Department offers a wide variety of undergraduate and graduate courses to meet the needs of students with a diversity of interests, and

academic and professional backgrounds. By studying literature, rhetoric, composition, and critical theory, students in the Department of English acquire experience in inter-textual and cross-disciplinary inquiry represented by many cultures and historical periods. They learn critical approaches to texts and issues that enable them to interpret and compare positions, to read closely, critically, and with empathy, to conduct research, to weigh evidence, and to write with insight and expertise.

Program Preview— ATTW Graduate Research Award Winners

Program Preview— ATTW Graduate Research Award Winners

We have an amazing line up of panels and presenters for ATTW 2016, and the conference is only three weeks away! We asked the ATTW 2016 Graudate Research Award recipients to introduce themselves and share the abstracts for the research panel have assembled for the conference.

Get to know Laruen Cagle, Susan Rauch, and Emily January Peterson. Then plan on attending their panel during the first session on Wednesday morning April 6th at 9:00 AM at The Hilton of Americas– Houston.

Continue reading “Program Preview— ATTW Graduate Research Award Winners”

ATTW 2016 Registration Round-Up

Smile if you already registered for #attwcon 2016!

!

Pre-conference registration is now closed. closes TODAY, Fri 3/25! in ten days!

If you’re planning on attending ATTW 2016 in Houston, please register for the conference now. Registration will be available at the door, but it will be faster for you (and for the registration team) if you register before the conference.

While you are registering, please renew your ATTW membership. We’ve added 20 memberships in the last two weeks, which is great news, but we still have about 50 presenters who haven’t signed up or renewed their memberships yet. Please do this along with your registration.

We can’t wait to see you in Houston! Read this letter from our conference co-chairs to learn more about the conference program.

Update 3/25: The Women in TC luncheon is SOLD OUT. Even if you’re not attending ATTW, you can still attend the Women in TC Luncheon at the ATTW conference. We are asking everyone to pre-register this year so we can plan accurately for lunches. 

If you have already registered for the conference and renewed your membership, thank you so much! We’ll see you soon!

 

ATTW Membership Update

Since we began our membership push in mid-January, more than 40 ATTW members have signed up or renewed for 2016. However, we’re still seeing two significant gaps we’d like to close before the conference: (1) while we are pleased to have 175 members, we have over 350 people on the ATTW-L, and our databases show even more former members who have allowed their membership to lapse; (2) over 70 conference presenters aren’t yet ATTW members.

ATTW membership is important because not only does it provide you with a subscription to Technical Communication Quarterly, it also helps to fund our conference each year. Your membership also funds graduate scholarships to attend and present at the conference.

If you have yet to sign up or renew your membership, you can find instructions and links at attw.org.

Graduate students can call or email Taylor & Francis directly to get the student membership rate of $22. Contact 1-800-354-1420 or customerservice@taylorandfrancis.com.

Faculty members, please be aware that when using a university email or renewing from a computer with a university IP address some members have had difficulties with the Taylor & Francis online store. If you need to use a university account or computer, it may simplify your process to contact Taylor & Francis by phone. 1-800-354-1420.

If you have questions about membership, please email Michelle McMullin attworg@gmail.com.

CFP: Special Edition Of Technical Communication Quarterly

Professional Development for Online Technical Communication Educators: Continuing the Conversation

Special Edition Editors: Beth L. Hewett and Tiffany Bourelle

Description:

With distance education continuing to grow at a rapid pace, composition scholars have increasingly studied and reported on the efficacy of online courses. These studies vary in content, from focusing on student-perceived success in the online classroom (Boyd, 2008) to measuring the comparability of online courses to their face-to-face (f2f) or onsite counterparts (Arbaugh, 2000; Collins & Pascarella, 2003; Neuhauser, 2002; Sapp & Simon, 2005). In this special issue, we extend the conversation by turning the focus to technical communication. Scholars of technical communication have reported on pedagogy, administration, and development of online technical communication classes and programs. In fact, in 2007, Beth L. Hewett and Christa Ehmann dedicated a special issue of Technical Communication Quarterly to the teaching of online technical communication. Since then, more programs across the country have added online degrees or have begun to teach aspects of their technical communication degrees in fully online and hybrid settings. Cook et al. (2013) reported that only 22 U.S. colleges and universities offered online degree programs in 2005; however, this number has more than doubled in size, with the authors reporting a total of 56 institutions offering programs or courses online. With this rapid growth, there remains a need to readdress online technical communication. Specifically, the field needs to include more conversations regarding training and successful pedagogical practices. Continue reading “CFP: Special Edition Of Technical Communication Quarterly”