Developing collaborative academic writing communities and a collaborative writer's toolbox

Grant type: Development (2000-08)
Round: October 2008
Amount awarded £4,996.00
Completed: January 2012
Leader(s): Dr Jane Speedy
Organisation: University of Bristol
Contact Email:
Contact phone: 0117 928 7168
Jonathan Wyatt
Oxford Learning Institute, University of Oxford
Ken Gale
School of Secondary and Further Education Studies, University of Plymouth
Nell Bridges
School of Psychology, Keele University
Start Date: 11 December 2008
End Date: 1 September 2010
Interim report received: 21 January 2010
Final report received: 12 December 2011
The aim of this project is to promote the discussion and development of writing styles and identities as a creative, collaborative aspect of life in the academy for staff and students alike. A practical outcome will be the generation of web-based learning materials, together with an ESCalate publication, that can be used by staff and postgraduate students to critically discuss and develop writing habits, skills and strategies. The project includes opportunities for comparison and collaboration across four very different UK universities (collegiate, civic, campus and new) in order to develop materials suitable for diverse staff/student populations. It is anticipated that the writer's pack and accompanying ESCalate publications will focus on the process of writing together and using writing as a form of reflexive social inquiry as well as on a variety of different activities and best writing practices. The online materials will include interviews with staff and students and short film clips of writing workshops in process as well as a group video diary/blog and suggestions for a range of activities to support groups in developing their own process of collective facilitating, collaborative writing, critical editing, conjoint publishing and reflexive inquiry. Pilot materials for this project will be generated through a series of three workshops conducted at the University of Bristol with staff and students from various postgraduate programmes and cultural and linguistic backgrounds and subsequently critically evaluated and refined with focus groups at the Universities of Oxford, Keele and Plymouth. The project proposer has considerable expertise in the development of collaborative writing communities nationally and internationally and both she and her project partners In Oxford, Keele and Plymouth have published and presented at conferences extensively in this area (Bridges, 2006, 2007; Speedy, 2002, 2005a, 2005b, 2005c, 2008; Gale and Wyatt 2006, 2007, 2008a, 2008b).