Fall 2022 Online Programming (Archived)

This fall we’re offering a range of online programming to provide you with writing support. If you are interested in joining an accountability group or a dissertation/thesis seminar, please click here.

Essay to Article: The Revision and Publication Process

This webinar will introduce participants to the process of submitting an article to a peer-reviewed journal. It will cover issues like (1) the key elements of an article, (2) choosing the right journal, (3) understanding what editors and reviewers are looking for when evaluating your work (and the ways this knowledge may affect your revision choices); and (4) responding to reviewer comments if you get a “revise and resubmit.” Wednesday, Dec 14 @ 1:00 PM; register here.

Past Workshops

Writing the Academic Job Cover Letter

The academic job cover letter is a crucial document in any candidate’s application material; often, it makes the first and most lasting impression on members of a search committee. In this webinar, participants will learn how to approach the writing of their cover letter in a way that makes a coherent and compelling argument about their suitability as a candidate rather than simply repeating information contained in their CV. Friday, Sept 16 @ 3:30 PM; register here

Writing a Book Review

Many academic journals publish reviews of recent books in their field. These reviews are one of the most significant ways in which scholars around the world become aware of the books in question. Consequently, the academic who writes such a review plays a crucial role in shaping the preliminary judgment readers make, thereby influencing the field as a whole. In graduate school, many seminars include a book review as a writing assignment, and advanced graduate students often see them as an ideal starting place for trying to get published. In this workshop, participants will be introduced to the generic conventions of the book review. We will also address the rhetorical and political considerations one needs to make when critiquing senior colleagues, as well as the practicalities of getting placed in a journal. Monday, Sept 19 @ 2:00 PM; register here

Statement of Purpose for the PhD Application

Among the documents one has to craft for a PhD application, the statement of purpose is one of the trickiest to get right. On the one hand, you need to demonstrate that you have some kind of research agenda already in mind. On the other hand, you aren’t a PhD student yet, so how are you supposed to know what you are going to research? This webinar helps participants understand the expectations of the readers they are writing for and how to strike a good balance between personal narrative and academic certainty. Monday, Sept 26 @ 1:00 PM; register here.

Returning to Academic Writing

Just starting out in graduate school? Are you feeling a little bit jittery about getting back into academic writing?  Maybe you’ve been away from writing for a while and want some refreshers. Join this webinar to learn about the key elements of academic writing, how to overcome writing fears, and how to develop a productive writing habit. Monday, Oct 3 @ 1:00 PM; register here.

Goal Setting and Time Management

In this webinar, designed for students in varying stages of the writing process, we will discuss how to schedule time and keep oneself accountable to academic research and writing goals and deadlines. We’ll discuss habitual writing goals and project-based goals. Participants will make a plan for completing their writing goals, breaking down long-term goals into manageable short-term goals. We’ll also go over some web apps that can help with this process. Tuesday, Oct 11 @ 1:00 PM; register here.

 Writing a Conference Abstract

Do you see a conference in your future? Here we will review the best practices of responding to a CFP. We’ll look at graduate school conference CFPs, as well as regional and national conference CFPs—each has its own peculiarities. We’ll provide examples of successful critical and pedagogical abstracts. We’ll also take a look at a few abstracts that failed to effectively navigate the sometimes-idiosyncratic language of a CFP and discuss why we think they failed to qualify for their panel. Monday, Oct 17@ 12:00 PM; register here.

Taking Smarter Notes

When doing research, many people take notes in ways that don’t help them enough. Less organized people jot down their ideas on loose papers that can easily get lost, and more organized people gather their notes into project-based books and folders that may never get consulted again when that particular project is finished. This webinar introduces participants to a particular note-taking system, the Zettelkasten, that can serve as a life-long research and learning companion. It is a way to take and store notes so that the ideas you develop over your entire career are always at hand and never get lost. Whether you are taking courses, reading for orals, or already writing your thesis or dissertation, consider the enormous long-term advantages of taking smarter notes. Thursday, Nov 10 @ 3:00 PM; register here.

Structuring Argument-Based Writing

Writing a long paper can be challenging, especially when it comes to organizing all the reading and thinking one has done into a coherent progression of paragraphs and sections. This webinar introduces participants to some of the fundamental principles that help guide decisions about structuring a longer academic essay. Monday, Nov 14 @ 2:00 PM; register here.

Reverse Outlining+

When it comes to academic writing, that actual process of putting one’s research and thinking down on paper tends to derail even the best-laid plans; no matter how clear one’s initial outline or mental blueprint, things happen and, as a result, many people end up with a first draft that’s anywhere from a bit unruly to a total mess. In this webinar, participants will be introduced to a reverse outlining technique that can help to gain a clearer view of a draft’s current paragraph-by-paragraph structure in order to figure out what is and isn’t working, and thus to make a plan for structural revision. There will also be a brief introduction to other outlining techniques. Monday, Dec 5 @ 2:00 PM; register here.
Need help with the Commons? Visit our
help page
Send us a message