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University of Colorado Denver College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Denver Writing Project

Invitational Summer Institute

The application period for the 2014 Invitational Summer Institute has passed. We will begin accepting applications for the 2015 institute in late 2014.

Imagine spending three weeks completely immersed in the teaching of writing and your own development as a writer. Put yourself into an institute classroom one sunny morning, where you find your teacher is one of the metro area’s best writing teachers demonstrating her most successful approach to teaching writing. Then, over lunch, you talk with a fellow teacher and an institute consultant about new approaches to integrating Common Core State Standards with how you teach writing to your students.

Or put yourself into this scene: as you sit at a picnic table on historic Ninth Street, shaded by a giant elm, munching popcorn, you read a draft of a story you’re working on to three of your institute fellows; they talk with you about their experience of your narrative, and then they read theirs. Finally, see yourself at the Friday afternoon pot lucks, where you and your new professional colleagues break bread and build friendships further.

These scenarios take place every week during the Denver Writing Project Summer Institute. As a member of this exciting and imaginative program, you can earn up to six University of Colorado graduate credits  that can be applied toward a master's degree in English or Education.

You are also paid a small stipend for active participation. That's right. We pay you to participate. For three weeks in June, you and roughly twenty other institute teachers gather on the Auraria Campus to learn proven methods for teaching writing; study research, theory, and pedagogy for teaching writing; and work on your own self-designed writing projects. When you complete the three-week session, you may be selected to become part of the DWP outreach teacher corps who conduct teaching-of-writing workshops, based on their institute experience, in Front Range schools and colleges.

We hope to receive applications from teachers in varying content areas, who teach a variety of grade levels (K through college), and who define themselves as life-long learners. 

Regular activities include: Interaction with guest writers, demonstrations of teaching best practices (by teacher participants), discussion of common texts, and time to focus on your own writing and work with a writing group.

**Institute fellows will complete three pieces of writing centered on a topic of personal significance or a personal experience--e.g., a memoir, an experimental piece arising from the experience (poem, short story, etc.), and a personal essay inspired by the experience or topic.

The concluding assignment will ask fellows to prepare a piece of professional writing such as an article, personal position paper, policy for their school, or script for presentation at a professional meeting.​​​