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Now’s the Time: A Workshop for Grad Thesis Writers

27 Oct

Sunday, November 13, 11 AM to 3 PM
College Building 346

Join Anne West (Senior Critic, Graduate Studies), Jen Liese (Director, Writing Center), and your peers from across departments and disciplines for a half day devoted to imagining, planning, launching, contextualizing, and sharing your written thesis, including …

• exemplary theses across disciplines, selected to highlight a range of styles, content, structures, and forms

• writings by artists and designers out in the world, selected to help evoke and stoke potential writing futures

• useful practices in research and documentation (both bibliographic and studio-based) 

• writing prompts throughout

• anything else you need (we welcome suggestions in advance)

• and free lunch, too

Grads in all years are welcome.

Please RSVP to by November 10.
And don’t forget … the Writing Center’s tutors work with graduate thesis writers throughout the writing process; one-time appointments can be made here; weekly or biweekly appointments with the same tutor are also available (e-mail to discuss).
Looking for more resources? Check out these handouts of particular note:


Two Workshops Starting this Week

17 Nov

Join the RISD Writing Center for two great workshops this week.

The first is open to any and every RISD student:

Writing for Crit
Critiques are an opportunity to share your work with an insightful audience and gain feedback for a project’s development. How can we get the most out of the experience? This workshop will invite us to experiment with prompted list-making, self-interviews, and “objective” formal analysis designed to help you articulate your intentions, observations, and questions before crit. We’ll also talk about using writing post-crit to reflect and self-direct.
Facilitated by Jen Liese, RISD Writing Center Director

This workshop is offered multiple times, so choose the day that best fits your schedule:
Tuesday, November 18
Wednesday, November 19
Thursday, December 4

On any day, this workshop will take place 4:00-5:30 PM in the RISD Writing Center, College Building 240. No need to RSVP — just arrive on time, please.
*Participants: please bring a piece you’ve made to engage with in this session.

The second is especially for Grad students:

Grad Written Thesis Workshop
The first in a series of five workshops designed to support your thesis-writing process, this workshop will provide a big-picture view of the opportunity of the graduate written thesis, including: a guided tour of exemplary theses; shared dialogue on thesis goals, planning, and resources; and experimental writing exercises to start or grow your writing process.
Led by Anne West, Grad Studies Senior Critic, and Jen Liese, RISD Writing Center Director


Thursday, November 20
Old Library (College Building room 521)

We’re looking forward to diving into these topics, and we hope to see you there.

Workshops! Come and Get ‘Em!

18 Sep

The RISD Writing Center is kicking off our Fall semester workshops next week with two Liberal Arts-focused workshops.

E101 Literary Analysis: Overview and Q+A
Presented by: Meredith Barrett
You may already be familiar with writing about literature from high school, but college-level assignments will take you deeper into literary analysis. Your E101 professor will guide you through conventions in the discipline, but this workshop will provide a refresher, a chance to further your practice of writing as a reader, and a place to ask questions. We’ll cover topics including annotating texts; close reading; quoting from the text; and analyzing character, plot, dialogue, symbols, and metaphors.

Monday, September 22
Wednesday, October 1
Thursday, October 9

H101 Formal Analysis Paper: Overview and Q+A
Presented by: Jen Liese
Your first H101 paper assignment—the formal analysis—is probably entirely new to you. Your H101 professor will guide you through the conventions, but you may want to learn more. In this workshop, we’ll review the essentials and the finer points of this cornerstone of art history writing, share approaches for looking, describing, and analyzing, and raise the questions you thought no one else would have.

Tuesday, September 23
Monday, September 29

These workshops will take place 4:00-5:30 pm in the Writing Center (CB 240). Each is offered multiple times, so choose the day and time that best fits your schedule (no need to RSVP—just arrive on time, please).

And check out our other Fall semester workshops on our Workshops page.

Spring Break Grad Thesis Writing Retreat

11 Mar

This Spring Break, you don’t have time to lounge on a beach in Mexico or binge-watch House of Cards. This year, you’re working on your graduate written thesis. But you do deserve a break — an opportunity to put away distractions and focus on writing. You deserve a day or two at the Spring Break Grad Thesis Writing Retreat.

Check out the poster below for details and RSVP before it fills up.

Thesis Writing Retreat

Make the Most of Your Wintersession

6 Jan

Wintersession is a time for special projects, exploring interests, and getting a head start on things to come.

If you’re looking for something to dive into, check out our Wintersession workshops. Click the posters below for details and see our Workshops page for a calendar view.

ESL Movie Group

Thesis Poster

Got Glossophobia?*

19 Sep

Speak up,


Make eye contact,


And take up space, darn it!

And that’s just lesson one in our Fall workshop series Got Glossophobia? Public Speaking Workshops for Artists and Designers. Led by the fabulous artist, actor, activist, and RISD alum Ruthie Scarpino (pictured above), these workshops are rooted in both performance and improv theory and practice and artists and designers’ methods, content, and contexts. We just got a preview of Ruthie’s plans, and while we don’t want to give too much away, we can tell you that these workshops will be brilliantly conceived, deeply useful, and insanely fun.

E-mail to learn more or sign up.

And please check out the dozen different workshops we’re offering this fall by clicking on the “Fall Handouts” link in the upper right corner of this homepage.

*Glossophobia, from the Greek glōssa, meaning tongue, and phobos, meaning fear or dread.

Book-binding Workshop

22 Mar

Do you have something worth saving? Something worth a cover and a spine? Maybe it’s that collection of poems and short stories you’ve been holding onto. Maybe it’s your Graduate Written Thesis or your Degree Project.

The AS220 Community Printshop is offering a Case Bound Binding workshop at the Mercantile at 131 Washington Street on April 15th, 6-10pm.  Lara Henderson, book artist and manager of the Printshop, will teach the folding and gluing techniques of accordion binding, and the page sewing of hard cover case binding. Participants will leave with one finished product in each of these styles, as well as the skills to create more at home.


Some materials are provided, but a few items are required of students. For more details and to register, visit: