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The University Writing Center, a unit of the Department of Rhetoric and Writing, helps UT students become more proficient, more versatile, and more confident in their writing abilities.

The University Writing Center is in the process of changing our mission statement. The statement above certainly reflects our primary goal, but we would like to be more transparent about the values that ground the work we do with students.

Our administrative team is currently working to revise and expand our mission. In the meantime, here are some of the documents that shape our thinking and approach. 

Books & Articles

Students’ Right to Their Own Language

“We affirm the students’ right to their own patterns and varieties of language — the dialects of their nurture or whatever dialects in which they find their own identity and style. Language scholars long ago denied that the myth of a standard American dialect has any validity. The claim that any one dialect is unacceptable amounts to an attempt of one social group to exert its dominance over another. Such a claim leads to false advice for speakers and writers, and immoral advice for humans. A nation proud of its diverse heritage and its cultural and racial variety will preserve its heritage of dialects. We affirm strongly that teachers must have the experiences and training that will enable them to respect diversity and uphold the right of students to their own language.” ⁠—Resolution adopted by the Executive Committee, Conference on College Composition and Communication, 1972

Click here for details about how and why this statement was adopted.