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ERIC Number: EJ980233
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Oct
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 15
ISSN: ISSN-1474-0222
Writing and Resistance: Reflections on the Practice of Embedding Writing in the Curriculum
Clughen, Lisa; Connell, Matt
Arts and Humanities in Higher Education: An International Journal of Theory, Research and Practice, v11 n4 p333-345 Oct 2012
Support for writing instruction amongst lecturers in UK Universities is high, but they often prefer it to be provided by dedicated study skills specialists operating outside subject curricula. Yet because of the well-documented problems with the skills approach (where literacy support frequently becomes a generic add-on), American models such as Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) and Writing in the Disciplines (WID) make a strong claim that writing stratagems and thinking/theorizing within disciplines are actually intrinsically linked. It is accordingly now a commonplace in such literacy research that writing development needs to be contextualized within the disciplines, and interest in adapting such approaches to the UK context is burgeoning. A recent project at Nottingham Trent University set out to explore the prospects for such an adaption through the piloting of an embedded approach in the Social Theory subject area, but the project ran into a series of resistances that came close to thwarting it entirely. The initial challenge lay in convincing time-poor subject lecturers to engage with the literacy initiative and to find space for it in an already saturated curriculum. Yet it seemed that behind the surface perception that the embedding of literacy development would be onerous, or would squeeze out core subject content, there lay a deeper attitude that such development was both "beneath" subject lecturers and unconnected to the specific concerns of their academic discipline. This reflection piece, co-written by the academic support coordinator championing the initiative and the Social Theory Subject Leader, seeks to understand some of these attitudes, using the work of Sigmund Freud and Theodor W. Adorno to probe various psycho-social aspects of the phenomenon of resistance to the embedding of writing development in a discipline. What emerges is a reflection on practice which arguably reveals a certain complex around the status of "teaching" as opposed to lecturing, alongside a process of displaced resistance to the managerialist and vocationalizing discourse which is on the ascendency within UK universities. (Contains 2 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (Nottingham)