NU Ideas Volume 2, Number 2

 

Nagoya University Multidisciplinary Journal

Proceedings of the Symposium on
Academic Writing and Critical Thinking

Introduction

Dear Reader,

The Symposium on Academic Writing and Critical Thinking (AWCT) was held at Nagoya University on 16 February 2013. The symposium brought together educators and scholars from universities and schools throughout Japan, as well as participants from abroad.

The symposium featured three plenary presentations, a round table discussion on writing education in Japan, and parallel sessions for presentation of invited papers. Leigh Ryan, the director of the University of Maryland Writing Center, described the history of writing centers and peer tutoring in the United States and around the word. Wai Ling Lai, director of Mei-Writing at Nagoya University, discussed the role of logic and critical thinking in writing education and described the program at Nagoya University. Tom Gally, managing director of the Active Learning of English programs (ALESS and ALESA) at the University of Tokyo, discussed problems with the application of "logic" to academic writing, and described teaching and learning activities at the University of Tokyo Komaba campus.

We are pleased to present papers based on the research presented in the symposium's parallel sessions, as well as papers by Professor Lai and Professor Gally in this special issue of NU Ideas. In addition, we are very happy to have an interactive slide show on the history of writing centers and writing education based on Professor Ryan's plenary address. The conference organizers thank NU Ideas for the opportunity to present this work here. We are particularly grateful to the many participants who attended and contributed to the symposium.

I would also like to extend my gratitude to the Mei-Writing faculty for their invaluable assistance in the preparation of these proceedings. Particular thanks to Nicolas Baumert, Markus Rude, and Lu Jian for their role in editing the French, German, and Chinese papers included here.

Chad Nilep
Mei-Writing, Nagoya University


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