NMSU’s Quality Initiative to Improve Student Writing

Why this Initiative?

Research shows that the only way to become a better writer is to write and that the writing process helps students understand information and think critically about the subject matter. Moreover, when experts write, they go through stages of a recursive process that we as educators might forget when we assign writing to our students. In the following three short videos, NMSU faculty across the disciplines describe their writing process, where they write to learn, revise and target specific audiences.

Writing to Learn


Considering Audiences

What Have We Done?

  • We collected data from over 15 sources to answer questions such as:
    • How well do students write?
    • How do we communicate about writing with students?
    • What are faculty and staff perceptions about writing?
  • We provided Faculty Development through mini-grant awards to faculty who incorporated informal writing as a tool to enhance student engagement with and understanding about course content. In the following short videos Writing-to-Learn participants share what they learned and how they applied these concepts in their courses.

Writing to Learn Cohort (2014) Panel

What We Have Learned

  • Faculty who believe that writing helps their students learn are more likely to require students in their courses to write
  • When students are required to write in their discipline, they believe that writing is important.
  • When students are not required to write in their discipline, they do not believe writing is important in their discipline.

Additional Findings >

Institutional Perspectives: Improving Students' Writing @ NMSU