Hi!! My name is Alison Riggs and I am a senior biochemistry major. I conduct research on campus with Dr. Douglas and Dr. Zewail-Foote. This research requires plenty of writing and communicating. Literacy and writing have played a huge role in my personal development as a writer, and more specifically, a scientific writer. Written communication in science was something I was not introduced to until coming to Southwestern. Much of my pre-SU writing education was focused on writing for a test, like the AP tests or the SAT. This “show what you know” writing was really not focused on argumentative communication at all, and writing in this manner always seemed like a chore. Therefore, I came in to college feeling confident about how to write a sentence, but not very confident in my ability to write a thesis. Luckily, through my FYS and NUMEROUS writing intensive courses I have learned a lot about how to effectively communicate and argue. I have especially have grown in learning about scientific writing. I still remember my first week and how scared I was when I had to organize a scientific paper in the correct order; I didn’t even know what an Abstract/Introduction/Methods section was! Luckily I know what they are now and I regularly write papers in a formal scientific manner for my lab courses.  Writing no longer feels like a chore, and  I now see how necessary it is to be a clear communicator, no matter the discipline!

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Consultant