In the University Writing Program (UWP), our mission is to help students become agile writers: people who understand writing as an intellectual practice and a way to make things happen in the world. What distinguishes agile writers are the capacities for strong analysis, compelling and persuasive expression, critical self-reflection, the ability to tell a story and connect with others, and the skills to discern how to do so in complex, diverse contexts. Critically, agile writers also know that writing is not a one-size-fits-all skill; successful writers learn to adapt their writing many times throughout their academic, professional, and personal lives. All of the UWP’s initiatives are in service of teaching students to become agile writers: the first-year writing course, Reintroduction to Writing; upper-level writing courses; partnerships with departments and programs to support the teaching of writing in their curricular contexts; other partnerships across campus; and establishing collaborations with the communities of Baltimore City.
UWP seeks to guide students in developing their writing in two broad ways::
- Writing to learn—to clarify concepts and organize thinking; to better understand oneself, others, and the world
- Writing to communicate—to engage with diverse audiences in multiple genres and modes; to persuade, express, analyze, interact, and more.
To reach these goals, UWP teaches students about rhetoric, critical thinking, writing processes, and conventions of writing in academic disciplines and many other contexts, while providing numerous and varied opportunities for practice. In all its work, the UWP is committed to inclusive pedagogy that invites students and colleagues into a lifelong practice of writing.