Graduate Student Writing Groups
The KU Writing Center offers semester-long writing groups for graduate students. They are all "accountability" groups. In accountability groups members set writing goals at the beginning of each meeting and use then the entire time to write. Each group is led by a trained writing group facilitator who is available for individual writing consultations as needed. Groups meet for 2-hour periods and include up to 12 members for online groups, and up to eight members for in-person groups.
Spring 2022 writing groups will be held online via Microsoft Teams or in-person in Anschutz 421. Information about using Teams for writing groups will be provided for participants after registration.
All writing group participants must have in-progress writing projects to bring to meetings. Groups are open to all graduate students but tend to work best for more advanced students (third year and above) because they often have more long-term writing projects such as dissertations, journal articles, and theses.
Spots in groups are awarded on a first come, first served basis. You may only participate in one group per semester. After you apply for a group you will receive an email from the Writing Center letting you know if you have been given a spot or if you have been put on the group's waitlist. We highly suggest you register as soon as possible as groups are very popular.
Mondays 9am-11am, Anschutz Library 421
Mondays 1pm-3pm, Online
Tuesdays 1pm-3pm, Anschtuz Library 421
Tuesdays 6pm-8pm, Online
Wednesdays 9am-11am, Online
Thursdays 1pm-3pm, Anschutz 421
Fridays 10am-12pm, Online
- A sense of accountability
- Increased writing productivity
- Encouragement to set and accomplish goals
- Connection to other graduate writers
- Aid in overcoming "writer's block" and other writing challenges
When participating in a group led by the KU Writing Center we ask that you:
- Make an engaged commitment to the group: join with the intention of showing up every time.
- Let your facilitator know whenever you must be absent, as far in advance as possible.
- Respect the guidelines, structure, and schedule created by your group.
- Treat others in your group with respect.
- Let your facilitator know if you decide you can no longer participate.
- Let your facilitator know if you have any troubles or concerns with your group so that we can help.
- Fill out a post-group survey following participation. This allows us to continue to improve our writing groups program.
- Agree to maintain confidentiality pertaining to all materials and conversations during writing group meetings.
"Writing is an arduous yet rewarding process. Sometimes people need a little motivation and support in order to get the ball rolling. The facilitators are able to zero in on certain issues and make things like 'comma usage' not so scary." - Student in Special Education
"The most helpful aspect of participation in the writing group was accountability, set time to work, and other people who understand the process and the difficulties." - Student in American Studies
"It is useful to receive critical feedback and to learn from others." - Student in Geology
Whether you're interested in pulling together a group of friends or starting a group for your department, these ideas will get you started!
- Determine who your group participants will be, and who will be the point people for the group
- Decide how many participants the group will support - at the KUWC we've found groups of 10-12 work well to foster community
- Set a group schedule - what length and frequency of meetings makes sense for your group?
- Work with the group to decide on attendance commitments to foster accountability
- Choose if you'll meet in person or online - the KUWC has been using Microsoft Teams to hold remote groups during the pandemic
- Set SMART goals to create tangible, time-bound objectives for each writing session
For more detailed information about any of the tips above, we encourage you to complete a request for the KUWC's Writing Groups Starter Kit! The kit includes a guides and templates to help you facilitate your own writing group, set SMART writing goals, create time management schedules, create daily writing plans, and more! To request copies of these materials, please fill out the Writing Groups Starter Kit request form.