Summer 2018 Writing Workshops

The MPA Writing Workshops for January 2018 are listed here. Students MUST sign up for workshops in advance either in person (Room 1.68 NB), by phone (212-237-8569) or online and must arrive to the workshops on time.

Understanding the Question/Assignment and Addressing Key Concepts (90 minutes)

This workshop is aimed at helping students develop an understanding of public administration questions and concepts in relation to readings at all levels of the subject.  By means of a standard text culled from Public Administration Review, the workshop teaches the skills of extracting key concepts and addressing text based questions.  The importance of outlining and thesis development are discussed and practiced via hands-on writing.

  • Monday, June 4, 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday, June 5, 6:30 PM
  • Wednesday, June 13, 6:00 PM
  • Thursday, June 14, 6:00 PM

Organizing/Developing Responses to Questions and Issues (90 minutes)

In this workshop, students will learn how to dissect essay questions and test prompts and to organize claim or thesis-based argument/essay responses to questions and issues.  The skills presented and practiced in this workshop include thesis development, essay outlining, and using devices that would ensure a smooth flow of ideas.  Moreover, the skills honed here are essential for response papers at all levels of public management writing, policy memoranda, and the MPAQE. The workshop has a hands-on component.

  • Monday, June 4, 6:30 PM
  • Tuesday, June 5, 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday, June 13, 6:00 PM
  • Thursday, June 14, 6:30 PM

Integrating Information: Summary, Paraphrase, Quotation (90 minutes)

In this workshop, students will develop the ability to incorporate information from readings into well-written paragraphs in order to support their ideas or claims; the workshop demonstrates how to present such information effectively by means of pertinent quotations, paraphrases, statistics, and charts.  Additionally, students will also learn how to use brief summary and context to explain the information.  The skills learned here are essential for constructing convincing response papers, writing policy memoranda, and for meeting the requirements of the MPAQE. The workshop has a hands-on component.

  • Wednesday, June 6, 6:00 PM
  • Thursday, June 7, 6:30 PM
  • Monday, June 18, 6:30 PM
  • Tuesday, June 19, 6:00 PM

Writing Memoranda and Administrative Correspondence (90 minutes)

Effective communication is essential to meeting the goals of an organization. Organizational tasks and decisions are respectively carried out and made through written communications like memoranda and emails.  This workshop explores types of memoranda and emails, details common pitfalls, and teaches students how to create documents that look both professional and get the job done. The workshop has a hands-on component.

  • Wednesday, June 6, 6:30 PM
  • Thursday, June 7, 6:00 PM
  • Monday, June 18, 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday, June 19, 6:30 PM

Integrating Tables and Graphics into Projects and Documents (90 minutes)

This workshop seeks to familiarize students with presenting appropriate tabular and graphical content for public administration documents. The workshop covers various topics such as when to use figures or tables, how to construct and present them properly, how to navigate the variety of ways to present data in graphical form, and how to interpret them within a document. The goal of the workshop is to enable students to incorporate graphical data in their documents seamlessly and correctly.  The workshop has a hands-on component.

  • Monday, June 25, 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday, June 26, 6:30 PM
  • Wednesday, June 27, 6:30 PM
  • Monday, July 2, 6:00 PM

Writing Policy Memoranda (90 minutes)

The capstone memorandum is the culmination of an MPA student’s education and everything he has practiced and learned has led to this semester-long final project. The Writing Center is here to help students at every phase of their memo-writing process, beginning with this workshop. During the workshop, students will be instructed in the form of the policy memorandum and its components, including statement of topic and overview, issue analysis, stakeholder evaluation, and solution proposing.  Additionally, students will also receive training in the methodology of incorporating information, including cost-benefit analysis, pro/con dialogue, and policy case study. Past the capstone project, the skills honed in this workshop will directly serve the students in a career in public administration where communication by memo is the standard.  The workshop has a hands-on component.

  • Monday, June 11, 6:30 PM
  • Tuesday, June 12, 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday, June 20, 6:00 PM
  • Thursday, June 21, 6:30 PM

Clear Sentence Structure and Coherence (90 minutes)

Writing quality has a big impact on how people and their ideas are perceived, for clarity of language implies clarity of thought. In this workshop, students will discover techniques for constructing sentences that are precise, concise, and easily understood so that they can make a professional impression.  The workshop has a hands-on component.

  • Monday, June 11, 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday, June 12, 6:30 PM
  • Wednesday, June 20, 6:30 PM
  • Thursday, June 21, 6:00 PM

Writing & Researching Literature Reviews for Term Projects and Administrative Reports (90 minutes)

The literature review is the keystone of a student’s term project as it not only outlines the previous knowledge of a given topic, but it also provides inspiration for policy solutions to current issues. In this workshop, students will learn how to create a literature review for MPA policy memos and the Capstone project, with a specific emphasis on utilizing newspapers, journal articles, and governmental data to explain the exigencies of action forcing events and devising tenable solutions for those events. Students will also be shown how to write and cite sources in the review and be offered hands-on practice incorporating sources into their writing.

  • Monday, June 25, 6:30 PM
  • Tuesday, June 26, 6:00 PM
  • Thursday, June 28, 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday, July 3, 6:00 PM

Writing & Revising Policies, Procedures, and Administrative Directives (90 minutes)

The capacity for an organization in the public or private sector to accomplish its mission is determined by that organization’s written procedures. In the “Writing & Revising Policies, Procedures, and Administrative Directives” workshop, students will be instructed on the importance of clear and concise procedures and directives and the best methods to create them. Additionally, students will learn and practice strong methods to revise existing policies and procedures. The skills acquired and honed in this workshop will be a useful complement to a practical graduate education in the field of public administration.

  • Wednesday, June 27, 6:00 PM
  • Thursday, June 28, 6:00 PM
  • Monday, July 2, 6:30 PM
  • Wednesday, July 3, 6:30 PM