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Strategies for Online WAC Faculty Development

April 17, 2020

Young Student Watching Lesson

This virtual workshop was offered on April 17th, 2020 by the AWAC Mentoring Committee and the CCCC WAC Standing Group and was led by Christopher Basgier (Auburn University), Amy Cicchino (Auburn University), and Susanmarie Harrington (University of Vermont).

Many WAC administrators are moving faculty development experiences online during the COVID-19 pandemic. This virtual workshop focused on strategies for supporting faculty remotely, with a particular emphasis on extended faculty development experiences such as WAC workshop series.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Managing time in online development planning
  • Designing synchronous and asynchronous interactions
  • Creating accessible experiences that can appeal to a range of instructors
  • Promoting meaningful interactions with and among faculty

Facilitators will each touch on these topics, but we hope participants will share their ideas and strategies as well. In addition, the AWAC Mentoring Committee will help organize participants into peer groups following the workshop so they can continue sharing ideas and getting feedback on their work.

Presenter Bios

Christopher Basgier is Acting Director of University Writing at Auburn University. He works on a number of different programs for University Writing, which includes a comprehensive WAC/WID faculty development arm, a Writing Center, and an ePortfolio Project, which is Auburn’s Quality Enhancement Project for SACS accreditation. He consults with individual faculty and departments on writing and high impact practices in courses and curricula; supervises professional development for writing center staff; and delivers workshops on a range of different topics. His research currently involves the methodological challenges in identifying threshold concepts for the teaching of writing in the disciplines.

Amy Cicchino is Associate Director of University Writing at Auburn University. At Auburn, she supports faculty development within the WAC program, leads the Graduate Writing Partners program, facilitates workshops related to writing and writing instruction, and is currently expanding asynchronous online resources for writing across the curriculum. Her research takes up writing program administration, multimodal online instruction, and teacher professionalization. She is a member of the AWAC Mentoring Committee, an Executive Board At-Large member of the Global Society for Online Literacy Educators (GSOLE), and is co-leading a task force on digital ethics and ePortfolios for the Association for Authentic, Experimental, Evidence-Based Learning (AAEEBL).

Susanmarie Harrington is Director of Writing in the Disciplines at the University of Vermont. In addition to coordinating writing-related faculty development for faculty across campus, she has been involved in UVM’s general education efforts and also coordinates UVM Communicates, an initiative focused on training students and faculty to communicate their expertise to broader audiences. She works with individual faculty, cohorts and departments on writing pedagogies in courses and disciplines, leads workshops on course design, assessment, peer review, and other topics. Her current research explores faculty development at the intersections of writing and information literacy.