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CNY Humanities Corridor: Supporting Multilingual Student Writers in the U.S. University – Whose Labor and What Kind?

April 29, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

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Central New York Humanities Corridor logo including a golden circle

This event is a CNY Humanities Corridor panel with two second language writing scholars presenting on how faculty can support multilingual student writers. 

Language Ideology, Multilingual Identities, and the Division of Labor in Educational Practice

Gail Shuck is Professor of English at Boise State University, where she has directed English Language Support Programs since 2001. Her research focuses on language ideologies, language identities, and linguistically inclusive writing program administration. She is currently editing a collection with Kay Losey on plurilingualism in U.S. writing classrooms.

Talk Abstract: Drawing on research on language identities and on her experience as English Language Support director for a university in a refugee resettlement city, Dr. Shuck will discuss the complexities of “multilingual student” identity and how those complexities are erased in pedagogical and institutional practices. Who do we mean when we talk about multilingual students, ESL students, English learners, bilingual students? What assumptions do instructors and institutions make about multilingual students’ educational and linguistic backgrounds, residency or visa status, rhetorical abilities, and first-language literacy? How do such assumptions change the distribution of labor–of students, faculty, staff, different offices/units–throughout an institution? What are some points of tension around redistributing such labor?

Landscapes of Labor and Visions of New Lands: Supporting Multilingual Writers

Angela Dadak is the second language writing specialist for the Writing Studies Program at American University in Washington, DC. She teaches first year writing courses to linguistically diverse undergraduates, supports writing faculty in their work with multilingual writers, and participates in university-wide initiatives related to multilingual students.

Talk Abstract: From language support offices, to writing centers, to individual professor’s offices, the landscape of support for multilingual writers is rarely simple, reflecting or even erasing their complex multilingual identities. Dr. Dadak will begin by illustrating the difficulty for students and mentors in navigating this territory and then consider the underlying ideological, financial, structural forces shaping it. How do current models of support respond (or not respond) to those various forces? How do these models distribute labor across multilingual writers, faculty, staff, and other actors on and off campus? How might we envision alternative structures and paradigms for supporting writers of all backgrounds on our campuses?

This event is supported by Kate Navickas and Michelle Cox of the Knight Institute for Writing in the Disciplines, and is open to interested instructors, including future faculty.


Knight Institute for Writing in the Disciplines
View Organizer Website


Teaching Development, Writing Support
Focus Area
Build Your Skills
Transferable Skills
Communications, Teaching & Mentoring
April 29 Panel Registration