Chris Thaiss

Professor Emeritus of Writing Studies
University of California, Davis

Chris Thaiss is Professor Emeritus of Writing Studies at the University of California, Davis. He consults on such topics as WAC pedagogy, WAC program design and management, composition program design, and writing in STEM. He serves regularly as a program reviewer, including as a member of the Consultant-Evaluators Service of the Council of Writing Program Administrators and internationally as a Fulbright Specialist.

Active in developing WAC in colleges and universities since 1978, Thaiss coordinated the International Network of WAC Programs from 2005 to 2015. He is a member of the International Collaborations committee of the Association for Writing Across the Curriculum and works on the editorial board of the WAC Clearinghouse.

At UC Davis, he served as first permanent director of the University Writing Program. He then directed the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning and coordinated the cross-disciplinary First-Year Seminar Program. Thaiss’s teaching has included undergraduate courses in writing in STEM and in business. Graduate courses include writing pedagogy, research history and methods, and program administration.

Until 2006, he taught at George Mason University, where he directed the composition and WAC programs and the university writing center. He served as chair of the English Department. In 2005, Thaiss received the University’s David King Award for career contributions to teaching excellence.

Thaiss has written, co-written, or edited fourteen books, including Writing Programs Worldwide (lead editor); Engaged Writers and Dynamic Disciplines (with Terry Myers Zawacki); and WAC for the New Millennium: Strategies for Continuing Writing-across-the-Curriculum Programs (co-editor).

His newest books are Writing Science in the Twenty-First Century (Broadview, 2019), based on his years of teaching writing to STEM majors at UC Davis, and the fourth edition of A Short History of Writing Instruction (Routledge, 2020), which he is co-editing with James J. Murphy.

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Areas of Specialization

Program development and leadership, teaching methods, multimodal, STEM-based writing programs, programming in diverse institutions with multilingual writers.

Geographic Consulting Experience

U.S., Canada, Europe, Latin America, Caribbean, Middle East, China and Hong Kong