The Writing Instruction Support (WIS) program provides assistance to faculty who are teaching or incorporating writing in their courses.
What we do:
- Support faculty in developing writing courses and assignments
- Offer resources on teaching and assessing writing
- Facilitate or co-sponsor instructional activities
- Provide information about writing course requirements
Connect with WIS:
- One-to-one consulting with the Head of WIS about your writing course design, including writing assignment design, peer review work, and/or writing assessment design. Use the webform below to get started.
- Writing Research Fellows, a former WIS initiative we're relaunching in winter 2024. Writing Research Fellowships for faculty-student pairs interested in conducting a study on writing research related to teaching and learning, student support, institutional change, community engaged work, or other related topics. More information forthcoming.
Meet the Head of WIS
Hi I’m Shannon Kelly, my pronouns are she/her, and I’m the assistant director of the TLD at Western Libraries and head of WIS. I’m excited to introduce myself, and give you a little background on my experiences related to writing instruction.
This is my third position at Western. My first was teaching English 101 as an MA student ten years ago. After I finished my Master’s in English Studies, I taught in the English Dept. as NTT faculty and co-directed Western’s English 101 program with Jeremy Cushman for three years.
As an assistant writing program director, I was interested in the role of mentorship in how teachers learn to teach writing, and digital and visual rhetoric, multimodal writing, and technical and professional communication. I’ve taught introductory writing, writing in the humanities, writing about literature, visual rhetoric and document design, technical writing, introductory design and digital making, and a creative design lab in which students worked with industry partners to design apps in the iOS ecosystem.
I love curriculum design, and creating writing courses and assignments that creatively challenge students in different writing situations and ideally prepare them to be thoughtful communicators and citizens with our always changing communication practices. Writing makes a lot happen in our institutions and our world, and I see supporting student writing and information literacy to be especially important right now.
Fast forward a few years, I left Western in 2018 to pursue my PhD in Rhetoric and Writing at MSU. While there, my research interests developed around institutional communication and research. I’m really interested in how institutions work and change, and I see the role of writing in IC to be key because institutions are made up of documents, relationships, and physical infrastructure, and they change in this order too. So writing is really important.
In the last few years, I’ve been developing a trauma-informed research methodology for participatory research Writing Studies, and studying how teams of students-staff-faculty make institutional change via collaborative writing.
Additionally, I co-facilitate a Trauma-informed design group that meets online monthly to share resources and approaches to trauma-informed work in different professional sectors, including tech, social work, and higher education. And in my institutional change research, I’ve developed a relational institutional change model that is trauma-informed and works to create better lateral communication across institutions.
That’s a lot about me. I’m really excited to be back at Western, with a focus on teaching and learning and WIS. I’m looking forward to getting to know faculty who teach writing and WP courses across the institution, and designing ways that I can better support faculty professional development around writing instruction. I’m looking forward to meeting you!