Public Writing Is Writing for Engagement

Nicole Hilbig
2 min readAug 2, 2022

It helps to find your opinion on current issues

Photo by wellphoto on Adobe Stock.

„Public Writing is one form of engaged writing and literally gets students out of the classroom, or writing “in the streets” and engaging with others about topics, issues and differences in life circumstances.“

Linda K. Shamoon and Eileen Medeiros target Public Writing (PW) in their research paper in chapter 10 of Going Public: What Writing Programs Learn from Engagement.

They state that Public Writing offers a special type of writing for engagement and helps you gain political action, which is so crucial to our societies.

What Is Special About PW?

They explain that the publicity framework leads to an important task to the writing assignments.

You start by researching and analyzing your topic in the context of its public with the following two questions:

  • Who is currently part of that public?
  • Who still needs to be drawn into the public debate to achieve a momentum for change?

You then work with the genres that help engage in the real debate occurring in the community.

This reflects the current interest in and developing conversation about community engagement and program management.

How Can You Develop Your PW?

They attach here Barbara Holland’s assessment model, in which you should ask four main questions:

Goal: What do we want to know?

Variable: What will we look for?

Indicator: What will be measured?

Method: How will it be measured?

Public Writing can therefore be beneficial in developing your argument, rhetoric, community-based and issue-based writing.

In particular, to find your personal opinion that is authentic, valuable and can contribute meaningfully to the public discussion.

Nicole Hilbig

I love learning and writing about the changes in our digital era. My topics are future, work, productivity, writing, education & personal stories.