Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Climate Talks and the Power of Words

See below for an excerpt from GlobalPost's Morning Chatter by Peter Gelling. His discussion of the recent climate talks in Paris showcases the power of words and the importance of word choice on a global scale.
It’s really hard to get the whole world to agree on anything. But at the Paris version of the climate talks, which have been going on for more than a week, a draft agreement is actually now on the table, which means decisions are being made.
To give you an idea of how complicated this gets, here’s a line from an earlier draft:
"[Each Party][All Parties] [recognizing the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities] [shall][should][other] regularly [formulate] [prepare], [communicate] [submit], [maintain] [update] and [shall][should][other] [implement] [fulfil] [intended][nationally determined mitigation [commitments][contributions][actions]] [nationally determined mitigation commitments and/or contributions] [a nationally determined contribution with a mitigation component]," the beginning of one sentence read
The difference between words like “communicate” and “submit” or “formulate” and “prepare” are significant to some leaders. Basically, everyone is trying to collectively commit to specific levels of greenhouse gas reductions, while maintaining the most flexibility they can on those reductions.
For another resource regarding word choice, particularly in essays, check out the Purdue Owl.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Wanted: Excellent student work for SNL's Writing Showcase

With Autumn Quarter grades in and Winter Quarter approaching fast, please consider submitting your strong papers, ILPs, and/or APs to SNL’s Writing Showcase! Students may submit up to three pieces of work (including essays, poems, stories, ILPs, APs, Capstone projects, and Digication e-portfolios) before the April 1, 2016 deadline.

Students will be invited to read selections from their submissions at the annual SNL Writing Showcase Live event on April 21, 2016. Outstanding submissions composed during the 2015-2016 year will also be recognized at the Spring Awards Luncheon.

Visit the Writing Showcase page on the Writing Guide for more information and entry form. Students may submit entries to and email with any questions.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

"When More Is Less": Quality over quantity in writing

"Moderate but meaningful" correlations in a recent study suggest that a few well-developed writing assignments may be better for students' intellectual growth and personal satisfaction over time, especially when compared to more quantitative writing practices.
“Effective writing practices are associated much more strongly than the amount of writing with greater student learning and development,” the study says. “There are undoubtedly instances where there is no student writing or so little that more would be salutary. However, the important lesson from our study is that quality matters -- that in many situations it would be better to place more emphasis on the design and use of the assignments than on the number or size of them.”
Click here to read Inside Higher Ed's take on the study, which was conducted through a collaboration between the Council of Writing Program Administrators (CWPA) and the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE).

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Writing Center December Intersession and WQ 2016 Hours

The University Center for Writing-based Learning (UCWbL) has announced its Writing Center hours at the Loop Campus during December Intersession.

Tuesdays: 10am-5pm
Wednesdays: 10am-5pm
Thursdays: 10am-5pm

The Writing Center will be open at both the Loop and Lincoln Park campuses beginning Week 2 of Winter Quarter 2016. Hours for both campuses are below.

Loop Campus Writing Center
(312) 362-6726

Monday: 9am-7pm
Tuesday: 9am-7pm
Wednesday: 9am-7pm
Thursday: 9am-7pm
Friday: 12pm-5pm
Saturday: 12pm-5pm
Sunday: Closed

Lincoln Park Campus Writing Center
(773) 325-4272

Monday: 9am-7pm
Tuesday: 9am-7pm
Wednesday: 9am-7pm
Thursday: 9am-7pm
Friday: Closed
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: 12pm-7pm

Click here for instructions on how to register and make an appointment. Be sure to select the correct campus from the drop-down box at the top of the WCOnline scheduler. Call either Writing Center with questions or concerns.