What is writing literacy?
Writing literacy is the ability to articulate information in in a way that resonates with the reader, reads clearly and is in correct APA style.
Throughout the Master of Arts in Communications program at Queens University of Charlotte I’ve had an opportunity to improve upon my writing literacy.
How did I reply writing literacy? (So what?)
One of the best ways to hone your writing craft is to learn from other writers. I was able to maximize this skill during my Book Review of Blur in COMM 613. In my book review, I was able to read deeply and write critically about Blur. I was enthralled in the content and I find that I still quote the material I learned in this book. My favorite line from Blur is “we have been here before,” (Kovach and Rosenstiel, 2010, p. 2). During this book review, I edited the paper many times, refining for content, style, flow and APA citation. I specifically remember going back and ensuring I was spelling out the word “percent”, adding the year behind the authors names at the first instance in each paragraph (and removing the extra incidents following in the paragraph) and using italics on book names. I also used multiple sources in this book review, and I ensured I followed the APA style in detail.
Another assignment that greatly helped me improve my writing literacy was development of the Gendered Communications in the Workplace textual analysis and digital project. I conducted a detailed textual analysis that analyzed the hegemony ideological control of women in the workplace. I studied communications from both men and women to understand if and how their communication styles differ. I was able to not only study the written communications of men and women, but I was also able to further develop my writing skills in the process of writing my paper. Through my research I learned more about writing literacy and the importance to write clear and concise communications. I also put this theory to practice in my paper.
Throughout the program I also used the Queens University of Charlotte Writing Resource Center to help me better understand how to write a great paper. The writing advisors at Queens University of Charlotte helped me better understand how to tighten the language in my paper and improve the clarity. I engaged the Writing Resource Center on several occasions, as I found it helpful to have another set of eyes on my paper, as they would often catch things that I did not notice.
One of the most important lessons I learned about Writing Literacy in the program is the importance of having another set of eyes on my work. I now put this to practice in my work, as I’ve implemented a peer review process for my team prior to submitted a communication for publication. My team and I will submit an item to a fellow teammate to review and edit prior to publishing to ensure we catch any unseen errors.
Another way that I will put writing literacy to the test is through my work as a writer. I am a freelance writer, in addition to my day job, and I will ensure that all of my articles are of the highest quality. I write for Little Ones magazine, and I’m sure they’ve already seen an improvement in the quality of my writing since joining this program.
Finally, my improved writing literacy will help me in my blog and personal endeavors in writing about running. One of the assignments, Elf on the Shelf reinforces hegemonic society, helped me marry my personal life with my professional (student) life, as I compared the hegemonic society to the practice of hiding Elf on the Shelf for my two kids. I can use this same informal writing style, infused with academia, to enhance knowledge of the scholarly research behind the topics I explore, while still ensuring they are relatable to the audience in which I communicate.
Reflections on Learning Outcomes
- Theoretical Literacy
- Research Literacy
- Digital and Media Literacy
- Writing Literacy
- Ethical Consideration
- Global Awareness
- Comprehensive Communications Project
Courses in my program
- COM 601 Communication Fluency
- COM 610 The Social Creation of Organizing
- COM 613 Constructing Messages and Audiences
- COM 616 Communicating Mindfully
- COM 624 Communication and Culture in a Networked Society
- COM 629 Leadership, Empowerment, and the Management of Meaning
- COM 638 Strategic Communication for Global Audiences
- COM 655 The Mediated Self and Changing Relationships
- COM 658 Creativity and Networks
- COM 664 Organizational Identity and Brand
- COM 680 Expanding Communication Boundaries
- COM 681 Launching Passion into Practice