Writing in the Discipline
1. Why or in what ways is writing important to your discipline/field/profession?
Both Economics and Finance are highly quantitative fields based on theory. Students graduating from our programs have to be able to think both quantitatively and qualitatively. They should then be able to communicate information to a variety of stakeholders (colleagues, management teams, interested public, etc) in a way that effectively aids sense-making and supports sound decision-making. Writing is essential to this process. Without effective writing, students will not be able to distill theory and data into a crucial decision making tool for the varied audiences for whom they will write.
2. Which courses are designated as satisfying the WID requirement by your department? Why these courses?
Our department has designated the following courses as Writing in the Discipline courses for the Finance program:
ENGL 230 Workplace Writing
FIN 423: Financial Markets and Institutions
FIN 461: Seminar in Finance
FIN 463: Seminar in Portfolio Management
In these courses, students engage with course material in a way that improves their critical thinking skills based on financial data and business cases. They utilize different forms of writing and receive feedback to improve their communication skills.
We have designated the following courses as Writing in the Disciplines for Economics:
ENGL 230 Workplace Writing
ECON 449: Introduction to Econometrics
ECON 462: Seminar in Economic Research
These courses build on the totality of the Economics curriculum and allow students to engage in significant research and writing projects.
3. What forms or genres of writing will students learn and practice in your department’s WID courses? Why these genres?
In the department WID courses, students practice such forms of writing as memos, business reports, research reports and term papers. These forms of writing align students’ skills with program goals and prepare them for the kinds of writing they are likely to encounter and produce after graduation.
4. What kinds of teaching practices will students encounter in your department’s WID courses?
Students receive ongoing feedback on their writing in all departmental WID courses. This direct engagement with faculty allows students to improve as writers. Cases drawn from various subfields of finance encourage students to think about the discipline in more depth. Blogs written on the most current financial market events nudge students with what’s going on in the markets and tie these to ongoing course discussions.
5. When they’ve satisfied your department’s WID requirement, what should students know and be able to do with writing?
After completing their WID courses, Economics and Finance students should be able to produce reports, memos, presentations, and similar business communication documents that combine theory and empirical data to make clear and sound arguments that will facilitate decision-making by a range of stake-holders.