WRITING FOR JOURNAL PUBLICATIONS - COME WRITE WITH ME PROGRAMME

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Publishing in academic journals is a universally recognised mechanism that provides academics and researchers with opportunities to disseminate their research and scholarly work. Additionally, research productivity is a crucial component of academics’ professional obligation. However, publishing can be a daunting endeavour, especially for developing and early career academics.

In assisting academics to develop academic writing skills, whilst simultaneously promoting the Scholarship of Teaching & Learning, the UKZN Teaching & Learning Office (UTLO) in collaboration with Extended Learning (UEL) hosted the Come Write With Me (CWWM) programme in 2015. The programme, was aimed at UKZN staff who are novice authors in the field of teaching & learning and institutional research, who are trying to improve their publications output.

Facilitated by Professor Michael Samuel, Professor Nyna Amin, Professor Johan Wasserman and Dr. Rubby Dhunpath, the programme also aims to develop the next generation of mentors and co-authors. Dr. Nick Munro and Dr. Ansurie Pillay, attended, attended the CWWM programme as associate mentors.

Dr. Rubby Dhunpath, Director of Teaching & Learning described the programme as resembling the process of “writing incubation – of ideas generation, writing and rewriting, receiving critique and revising drafts.”

Now in its fourth year, the programme has adopted an innovative approach of mentoring, facilitation and co-authoring between novice and experienced authors. The authors receive continuous guidance during the writing process from conceptualisation through to publication, which enable transferability of writing skills that are enduring and replicable. 

Dr. Myende Phumlani, a participating author appreciated the academic generosity of the mentors adding, “Having two mentors was helpful in navigating through the complexities of the writing process.”

The programme also proved to be a rewarding experience for the mentors. Professor Amin acknowledged the importance of the collegiate relationships, saying, “as much as we are co-mentors and facilitators, we are also on a learning curve”.

The Come Write With Me programme a series of six daylong Saturday workshops, which commenced on 6th February 2016, ended on the 27th August 2016.

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