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Great Writing Resources from UNC-Chapel Hill

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Recently I needed a resource to help students understand brainstorming. I knew that they generally understood the idea, but I wanted to encourage them to try some new strategies and stretch their invention skills a little. After a few disappointing Google search results, I found myself at the “Tips & Tools” page of the UNC-Chapel Hill Writing Center site.

There, I found perfect resources to share with students, including a Brainstorming tip sheet and this Webbing video:

Video Link : 2374

I quickly realized that the site had much more to offer. The “Tips & Tools” page features nearly a hundred resources, organized into four categories:

  • Writing the Paper
  • Citation, Style, and Sentence Level Concerns
  • Specific Writing Assignments for Contexts
  • Writing for Specific Fields

The handouts range from ideas on Thesis Statements to basic strategies for working on a Dissertation. Some of the resources focus on general writing advice, such as dealing with Procrastination and Writing Anxiety. Others address topics frequently heard in the writing classroom, like how to use Gender-Inclusive Language and ways to work with Writing Groups effectively.

Perhaps one of the best things about the site is that the handouts are published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 License. That means, as the site explains in the footer, “You may reproduce it for non-commercial use if you use the entire handout and attribute the source: The Writing Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.” If you need a supplement for your class or a specific student, these “Tips & Tools” have you covered.

Have you found an online resource that is particularly helpful in the writing classroom? Please share your recommendations in the comments below. I’d love to see the sites you use with students.

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I'd like to echo your comments about the "Tips and Tools" section of the UNC-Chapel Hill Writing Center site. I happened upon it during a search for resources to use for comparison - contrast. Their handout on Comparing and Contrasting includes the suggestion to use graphic organizers to plan a c/c paper and gives examples of different kinds of c/c topics, both concrete and conceptual. This handout is now a regular feature in the "Writing Toolkit" I keep in my online course site. Yes, the Tips and Tools section is a fabulous resource for writing instructors. [See their tips on Group Writing--its full review of the process of collaboration in writing proved useful in a recent group project]. 

Comparative analysis is a frequent assignment in my writing classes, so I sometimes supplement with this link to advice from the Harvard Writing Center, How to Write a Comparative Analysis, useful because it reviews two common organization strategies for a c/c paper. 

It takes time to vet online resources for writing instruction, but there are many rich materials out there, especially from Writing Centers.