Instructor Resources

The Writing Program is dedicated to developing community resources and reaching out to other institutions, but we’re also careful to maintain a focus on resources for our own teachers. Pages in this section of the website have been created specifically to support teachers in the Writing Program. Please let us know if there is anything else we can do to support  you and your teaching!

For New Instructors

  • Welcome to New Teachers!:  Our quick guide for New Instructors offers a range of informational links about  living in Normal, teaching in the Writing Program, and successfully beginning your studies here at ISU.
  • New Instructor Orientation: Information about our orientation program for new Writing Program instructors

Guides and Forms for ISU Instructors

  • Research and Release Forms:  Whenever students are working on research projects that will bring them into contact with people, it’s important to begin the work of teaching them ethical research practices (including the necessity of permission form.  This link provides forms that can be used for Writing Program course research projects.
  • Grad Student Handbook – Teaching and scholarship go hand-in-hand. Make sure you keep on track with your own work in order to become a better resource for your students.
  • ISU Writing Program Instructor’s Guide – Your guide to teaching in the ISU Writing Program.  This guide included information about requirements for our different courses, learning outcomes, pedagogies, etc.
  • ISU Writing Program Policies:  Part of the instructors guide, but we’ve also linked our policies here because instructors often need quick access to this information!
  • ISU Writing Program Mini-Grants:  This program is a great opportunity to teach your students about research grants!  You and students in your courses can apply for funds for research projects.
  • Guide to ReggieNet – ReggieNet is ISU’s official Course Management System (CMS). It offers many tools for posting assignments, leading discussions, and posting grades. To make the most of your ReggieNet page, be sure to view this guide.


Resources for Reading or Viewing:

  • Teaching Key Writing Program Concepts:
    This page organizes our growing list of resources for teaching important concepts and ideas in our Writing Program courses.  This link should be a “first click” for instructors looking for additional professional development!
  • Technology Resources: This page links to an entire range of resources discussing the bests ways to integrate technologies into your courses, as well as practical discussions of different software and tools.
  • White Papers and Handouts – Materials to provide you and your students with an overview of CHAT and the Genre Studies model.
  • ISU Writing Research Archives – Lesson plans, syllabi, and in-class activities provided by Writing Program instructors.
  • Coffee Clatch Collections These links provide notes from a range of informal discussions that we call Coffee Klatches.  You may find handouts and discussions of a range of topics related to both specific Writing Program issues and general teaching topics.
  • Grassroots Writing Research Colloquium Videos:
  • Writing Program Visiting Speaker Series:
  • Let’s CHAT podcasts
  • Teaching Resources at Illinois State and around the World Wide Web:  These links are a collections of resources that we’ve found are of value to ISU instructors.  The page include links to important ISU programs and resources and also resources for teaching composition from across the world.

Professional Development Events

The ISU Writing Program offers a wide range of professional development events each semester. However, the scheduling of these events is often arranged to suit different participants teaching schedules, so the times of these events change from semester to semester.  The best way to find out about upcoming events is to check our program calendar, which we update regularly.  Those interested in participating can also get in touch with the listed contact person to find out about upcoming events.

  • The Writing Program Summit: A professional development event for all Writing Program instructors, the Summit takes place on the Thursday and Friday before the start of each semester.
  • Let’s CHAT podcast series: This series was named for one of our key program concepts, Cultural-Historical Activity Theory (CHAT). Our podcast series helps to bring together interested members of our community to talk about praxis—how the theories and research we read can make their way into our daily practice as writers, and as people who need to share our knowledge with others.Podcast tapings are open to the public and Q&A and discussion sessions follow each podcast.
  • Experimental Teaching Groups: Each year we try to form at least one experimental teaching group that focuses on an issue of interest to the writing program. We have two goals for these groups – to create ideas about best practices and materials and resources for teachers and students to use. In addition, these groups are encouraged (and supported in their efforts to) publish or present this work at a range of conferences. Recent presentations have included:
    •  the NCTE Conference in 2011 (“Knowing What I/You/We Know: Alternative Assessment in Writing Instruction.” NCTE Convention, Chicago, IL, November 2011),
    • The CCC Conference in 2014 (“Teach, Transform, and Talk for High Road Transfer: Uptake Genres Helping Students Articulate How They Mediate Writing Development”).
  • Brown Bag Lunches: We host a few of these every semester. The topics of these lunches tend to focus more on general teaching issues, rather than topics related to our specific Writing Program research and practices.
  • Tech Time Events:  There are a few of these every semester, including sessions that are part of our Writing Program Summit events. Additionally, the Writing Program Technology Coordinator is available for one-on-one sessions to help instructors explore new technologies or learn to use available resources for their teaching.