Back to the Future:  Sustainable Writing Practices in the New Age 

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Our annual symposium for teachers and students of composition will be held this year on Friday, October 11, 2024. We hope you will join us for keynote speakers, workshops, and special writing events!  

We value our identity as a symposium that emphasizes the importance of conversation in how writing and speaking instruction transitions across grade levels and disciplines. This year we seek to look closely at ways to bridge writing practices that we value with innovations (such as the emergence of AI tools) that challenge the way we think about writing pedagogy. We also will explore how we can build resilience to prevent educator burnout and increase student success across all academic levels and disciplines.

As always, we seek fresh ideas that encourage innovative approaches to assignments, projects, and classroom activities that engage students & build inclusivity in the classroom. We also welcome research-focused presentations that include in-progress and/or completed research projects. 

We will consider these questions:

  • In this era of constantly evolving innovations in AI, how do we engage in discussion about ethical use of these tools among our colleagues as well as among students?
  • How do we honor the legacy of writing studies and our time-honored approaches to assignments, projects, and activities while acknowledging the implications that technological innovations can have on student writing outcomes?
  • How do we create equitable and inclusive environments in our courses at all levels of instruction? How might we engage with each other about how recent innovations support and/or challenge inclusivity in our classes?  
  • How do we frame assignments across the disciplines that emphasize student agency and encourage individual creativity as we prepare our student writers for the next level?
  • How do elementary and middle schools develop a foundational teaching of writing and communication with the implementation of innovative learning? How can we foster a cohesive K–16 culture of writing and communication?
  • How do we help students develop the reading, writing, speaking, and critical thinking skills necessary for college readiness? 
  • How might we diversify our understanding of AI’s impact on writing studies by considering how it affects multiple disciplines? What role do we serve as writing instructors to help develop student success in areas across the disciplines?
  • How do we differentiate between teaching digital literacy/digital writing and AI tools?  What are the overlaps between the two? 
  • What assessment practices best align with the needs of students and teachers in this ever-changing educational landscape?
  • What role do writing center and speaking center programs play in supporting student writers across our K–16 institutions?

We invite proposals for three types of sessions (lasting 45 minutes each):

  • Interactive presentations/workshops from teachers of all levels, writing/speech center directors/consultants, speech center directors/consultants, and other educational professionals. We welcome individual or collaborative proposals from across disciplines, grade levels, and/or institutional levels. 
  • Research Roundtables that showcase research projects (in-progress or completed) that align with this year’s theme.

We also invite proposals for Poster Sessions that showcase favorite assignments and/or project-based learning opportunities.

We believe these types of sessions will foster important conversations about the vertical alignment that could and should exist in K–16 writing and speech instruction. Please remember that we value presentations and workshops that include audience participation and ample time for questions.

Questions? Email us at

To submit a proposal, please complete this form. You will receive an email confirmation from the planning team. Proposals should be submitted by Monday, April 1, 2024 Monday, April 15. (Deadline extended!)

Proposals are due by Monday, April 15th