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The Bard College Institute for Writing and Thinking brings together middle school, high school, and college teachers for innovative, intellectually stimulating, and practical workshops at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, and at schools nationwide and abroad.

IWT was founded in 1982 by Bard College president Leon Botstein. Since its inception, it has helped teachers develop writing practices that enliven classroom learning through writing. IWT’s philosophy and practice center on the principle that writing is not merely a record of completed thought, but also an exploratory process that deepens learning across disciplines.

Through workshops that emphasize hands-on instruction in a collaborative learning environment, teachers hone skills that help students discover and interpret meaning, engage in productive dialogue, and learn critical thinking skills that support academic writing and learning. Our experienced faculty draw from diverse fields of expertise—including composition, poetry, literature, philosophy, art, and science—to develop and refine IWT’s writing practices. 

Why IWT?

Many teachers must rely on their own resources, lacking a supportive learning community in which to experiment with new teaching practices. Our workshops create opportunities for teachers from diverse disciplines and institutions to explore how writing-rich teaching practices can deepen thinking and promote understanding. Participants thrive on the sense of community that emerges as they work together, building collaborations that often continue over time and distance. This sustained sense of community sets IWT apart from university writing programs, creative writing workshops, and many professional development programs for secondary teachers.
“The prompts and practices employed were truly generative, and this is what brings me to Bard again and again. Losing myself in writing for a day sustains me in a way that nothing else does.”
--College professor, Writer as Reader participant, November 2016