Welcome to the Active Voice Blog!

Active VoiceWelcome to the Active Voice Blog, the official blog of the Wake Forest University Writing Center. You can find all the information you need about the Center around our main site, but this space is reserved for students, faculty, and staff to share perspectives on writing practices and processes. We hope you’ll find something here that speaks to you!

Wednesday’s Word of the Week (Halloween Edition)












sciomancy, n.

Divination through communication with the spirits of the dead.”

“She tried sciomancy and a ouija board to predict her grade in the course.”

“sciomancy, n.” OED Online. Oxford University Press, September 2014. Web. 29 October 2014.

Want more spooky words? Visit our Writing Center word web this week or check out this link.

Bragging on our Tutors

15619010586_7cf9b22e26_o (1)We are so proud of of our Writing Center tutors who presented during Undergraduate Research Day last week!

Meredith gave an oral presentation titled, “Interpersonal Engagement in Undergraduate First Year Writing.” Meredith said that “By looking most specifically at the use of ‘interpersonal themes’ in students’ writing…I identified components of academic writing that distinguish students who feel more and less prepared and comfortable with college-level writing. The value of this research is that it begins to pinpoint how students who feel more and less ready for college writing actually use language in their essays.”

Caroline presented her research on “The Effects of Age on Second Language Acquisition: Examining How the Older Brain Connects Sound and Writing System.” Her study “examined how age affects a person’s capacity to learn a new language after the age of fifty.” One interesting conclusion that Caroline drew from her research was that “the identification of ‘self-created’ mnemonic clues [is] the best method for adults over the age of fifty to acquire the sounds of a new language in conjunction with its writing system…”

Dee conducted her research this past summer in Vietnam and developed a poster titled, “Eliminating the ‘Mail-Order Bride’ Stigma and Empowering One’s Agency.” Dee concluded that “after interviewing 15 Vietnamese women who are currently involved in international relationships, the finding show that technological advancements have closed the gap of communication and distance for individuals who are involved in long-distance relationships.” She goes on to say that “more Vietnamese women today are involved in international relationships because of modernization, exposure to American media and ideologies, and cultural concentric circles in Vietnam.

Way to go Meredith, Caroline, and Dee!


Exploring Community

20131106fall5376Yesterday, we shared a recap of our National Day on Writing activities, including #writemycommunity. We now have lots of index cards in the Writing Center that share your perspectives on the Wake Forest community.

We recently stumbled across a great article about exploring community – 10 ways to explore and express what makes your community unique. It has some great ideas, especially the one where you celebrate (and eat) foods of your community!

Happy reading!


We had a great time celebrating National Day on Writing yesterday!











We officially wrote the longest WFU ghost story and you helped contribute quite a few silly sentences. More about that soon on where you can read it yourself.

And while ghost stories are fun, an even bigger part of our day was sharing about the Wake Forest Community.

We had students share words or phrases about what Wake Forest is and what Wake Forest could be. So many of you agree that WFU is a beautiful place, a second home, and a place to meet new people and make lifelong friends. One person said that it’s “filled with talented, worked-changing individuals.” Another said that WFU is a place that brings a smile to my face.”











And while so many positive things were shared about what Wake Forest is, many agreed that there is still room to grow as a university. Inclusion was a major theme that stood out regarding what Wake Forest could be. One student said that Wake Forest could be a “flourishing community of diversity and inclusion.” Other students wanted to see a strong connection to the Winston-Salem community, and “a more prominent artistic community.”









What do you think? There’s still room on our boards if you want to add your thoughts! Or you can come to the Writing Center and see all the contributions!


National Day on Writing Celebration



Happy National Day on Writing Wake Forest!

Our  celebration is happening right now in Benson! Come share your thoughts on community and add a sentence to the longest ghost story in WFU history!  We’re  here until 7pm so stop on by!

Can’t come by? Feel free to share your thoughts virtually by using #WFU and #writemycommunity. We’d love to hear what you think Wake Forest is and what it should be.

Also, we’ll be displaying our completed ghost story in the days leading up to Halloween so stay tuned.

“What makes a word ‘real?'”

Professor Laura Aull recently shared this with us and we think it’s too good not share with you. So, what does make a word real?

National Day on Writing — Monday, October 20

downloadOn Monday October 20, the Writing Center will be celebrating National Day on Writing in Benson (outside the food court) from 11am-7pm. Come and celebrate with us!

— Share your thoughts on the community of Wake Forest and participate in an event focused on the National Day on Writing 2014 theme. You can do this in person at our table or through social media using the hashtags #writemycommunity and #wfu

— Just in time for Halloween, you can add your spooky sentence to Wake Forest’s longest ghost story. Known as an exquisite corpse exercise (an appropriate name for our story), writers contribute to a story one sentence at a time. Come see the finished story in the Writing Center during Halloween week.

Come stop by our table on Monday and we’ll celebrate writing together!