WAC: Writing Across the Curriculum


“I am made and remade continually. Different people draw different words from me.” From Virginia Woolf’s 1931 novel The Waves

“In my life, writing has been an important exercise to clarify what I believe, what I see, what I care about, what my deepest values are. The process of converting a jumble of thoughts into coherent sentences makes you ask tougher questions." From President Barack Obama’s 2012 Times Person of the Year Interview

As Virginia Woolf and Barack Obama suggest, writing helps us connect, reflect, and ask important questions, a transformative process for both ourselves as writers and for the diverse audiences with whom we interact. The Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) group at MCLA, comprised of faculty from the sciences, humanities, and social sciences, believes that writing is central to the liberal arts mission of helping citizens successfully navigate complexity, diversity, and change. Writing is a transformative act, capable of changing the world and our connections to others.


The mission of the Writing Across the Curriculum group is to support and promote writing across the curriculum and beyond, from first-year writing, to writing in the disciplines and the Core, to writing for civic and creative purposes. The WAC initiative at MCLA provides faculty professional development through regular workshops and faculty gatherings focused on best practices in the teaching of writing, while also supporting faculty and staff with their own writing projects through the Faculty and Staff writing group. The WAC group also promotes student-centered writing initiatives, like MCLA’s Writing Studio. As Woolf suggests, every time we as community members use writing to better connect with each other, we, our courses, and our writing projects are “remade” anew.

Campus Outreach

The WAC group supports writing at MCLA in the following ways:

  • Through professional development workshops;
  • Through new faculty outreach;
  • Through individual faculty consultations;
  • Through participation in curriculum revision initiatives linked to First-Year Writing and the Core;
  • Through an interdisciplinary Canvas page devoted to resources on the teaching of writing and portable pedagogy;
  • Through the promotion of student-focused writing initiatives, like MCLA’s Writing Studio.

To become involved with WAC or to participate in WAC activities, please e-mail Dr. Amber Engelson at a.engelson@mcla.edu.