Martha Townsend

Martha Townsend

Professor Emerita of English at the University of Missouri
University of Missouri

Martha (Marty) Townsend is Professor Emerita of English at the University of Missouri (MU), and former Director of MU’s award-winning Campus Writing Program, established in 1984 as the flagship university’s writing-across-the-curriculum initiative. Campus Writing Program supports faculty in the disciplines who teach MU’s writing-intensive courses to 23,000 students who must take one lower-division WI course anywhere in the curriculum and one upper-division WI course in the major in order to graduate. Marty has spoken, consulted, and led faculty workshops at over 100 colleges and universities in the U.S. and in dozens of international settings. (A comprehensive list appears on page 20 of her CV.) Numerous international scholars have visited MU for up to a year’s time to study Missouri’s WAC program for potential adaptation at their home institutions. (See page 18 of the CV.) Author of dozens of refereed articles and book chapters, mostly WAC-related, she is a career-long advocate for WAC principles and programs. One institution for which she consulted wrote, “Her publications have played a central role in the conceptualization and development of WAC programs in the United States and abroad.” Together with her CWP colleagues and MU’s discipline-based WI faculty, Marty assisted in leading her land-grant university’s WAC program to receive the CCCC’s first Writing Program Certificate of Excellence, in 2004. The program has also been cited repeatedly in U.S. News and World Report’s America’s Best Colleges under the “Programs To Look For” category of Writing-in-the-Disciplines. Taking a cue from her career-long mentor, rhetoric/composition scholar Professor Winifred Bryan Horner, Marty continues to consult and publish as an emerita faculty member, with five new book chapters due to appear this academic semester. Marty is a former literacy consultant to The Ford Foundation and a Fellow of the Institute for Women in Higher Education Administration at Bryn Mawr. She holds the B.A. (1983) and M.A. (1985) in English from the University of Utah and the Ph.D. (1991) in English from Arizona State University.

Areas of Specialization

program development; program evaluation; faculty development (including comprehensive writing-to-learn and learning-to-write pedagogies); graduate TA development; curriculum development; high profile athletes’ writing and classroom performance; WAC and General Education; promotion and tenure guidelines for WAC scholars; publishing and co-authoring about WAC; mounting International WAC conferences.

Geographic Consulting Experience

U.S. (including public and private two- and four-year colleges and universities, land-grant, research-, teaching-, and faith-based institutions); Europe; Eastern Europe; Central America; the Middle East; Russia; China and Hong Kong; South Africa.