Expand the section navigation mobile menu

Department of Writing and Rhetoric

O'Dowd Hall, Room 378
586 Pioneer Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4482
(location map)
(248) 370-2746
fax: (248) 370-2748

Elizabeth (Betsy) Allan

headshot of Elizabeth Allan
Associate Professor
Director of the Professional and Digital Writing Major
Office: 381 O'Dowd Hall
Email: allan@oakland.edu


Elizabeth G. Allan is associate professor of writing and rhetoric. She teaches first-year writing and upper-level courses in the major. She also directs the Embedded Writing Specialists (EWS) program, which provides in-class tutoring support for students enrolled in our WRT 1020 Basic Writing course.

Dr. Allan joined Oakland University in 2009 after completing her PhD in English with a concentration in Composition and Rhetoric at Temple University (Philadelphia, PA). Before that, she taught writing at Philadelphia University (PA), where she became interested in the relationships between writing and design. Her dissertation investigated how architecture students develop the rhetorical strategies that are valued in visually-based disciplines.

Dr. Allan earned her M.Ed. from Arcadia University (Glenside, PA) and her B.A. in English from Wesleyan University (Middletown, CT). Early in her career, she taught English at the secondary level, a private junior college, and a community college in Pennsylvania.

Dr. Allan’s research interests include rhetorical ethnography, writing pedagogy and assessment, multimodal rhetorics, writing across the curriculum/writing in the disciplines (WAC/WID), and the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL).


Ph.D. in English. Temple University (Philadelphia, PA). 
M.Ed. Arcadia University (Glenside, PA).
B.A. in English. Wesleyan University (Middletown, CT). 


WRT 1000 Supervised Study
WRT 1020 Basic Writing
WRT 1050 Composition I
WRT 1060 Composition II
WRT 3020 History of Rhetoric
WRT 3030 Literacy, Technology, and Civic Engagement
WRT 3062 Writing Center Studies and Peer Tutoring Practice
WRT 3064 Writing About Culture: Ethnography

Selected Publications

Sarat-St. Peter, H. A. & Allan, E. G. (forthcoming). Positioning writing: An analysis of textbook arguments about writing and multimodality. In P. R. Powell (Ed.), Writing changes. New York, NY: Modern Language Association.

Allan, E. G. (2018). “Real research” or “just for a grade”?: Ethnography, Ethics, and Engagement in the Undergraduate Classroom. Pedagogy: Critical Approaches to Teaching Literature, Language, Composition, and Culture, 18(2), pp. 247-277. https://doi-org.huaryu.kl.oakland.edu/10.1215/15314200-4359181

[Note: This article with supplemental material will be included in the Best of the Journals in Rhetoric and Composition 2019, published by Parlor Press.]

Ostergaard, L., & Allan, E. G. (2016). From falling through the cracks to pulling through: Moving from a traditional remediation model toward a multi-layered support model for basic writing. Journal of Basic Writing, 35(1), 23-62. https://wac.colostate.edu/jbw/v35n1/

Allan, E. G. (2016). “I hate group work!”: Addressing students’ concerns about small-group learning. InSight: A Journal of Scholarly Teaching, 11, 81-89. http://insightjournal.park.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/8-Allan.pdf

Allan, E. G. (2016). Ethnographic perspectives on student-centeredness in an academic library. College & Undergraduate Libraries, 23(2), 111-129. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10691316.2014.965374

Allan, E. G., Driscoll, D. L., Hammontree, D., Kitchens, M., & Ostergaard, L. (2015). The source of our ethos: A program-wide shift from “I think” to “We know.” Composition Forum, 32. http://compositionforum.com/issue/32/oakland.php

Allan, E. G. (2015). Low-tech/low-verbal multimodal assignments in first-year writing: Beyond a “words-plus” model of multimodality. Journal of Global Literacies, Technologies, and Emerging Pedagogies, 3, 236-249. http://joglep.com/index.php/archives/volume-3-issue-1/

Allan, E. G., & Driscoll, D. L. (2014). The three-fold benefit of reflective writing: Improving program assessment, student learning, and faculty professional development. Assessing Writing, 21, 37-55. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.asw.2014.03.001

Allan, E. G. (2013). Multimodal rhetorics in the disciplines: Available means of persuasion in an undergraduate architecture studio. Across the Disciplines, 10(2). http://wac.colostate.edu/atd/articles/allan2013.cfm

Allan, E. G. (2012). The undergraduate design charrette: A case study. Academic Exchange Quarterly, 16(2), 150-155. http://rapidintellect.com/AEQweb/

Allan, E. G. (2007). The triple-voiced adjunct: Finding a middle space while teaching writing on the road. FORUM 10(2), A2-A8. www.ncte.org/library/NCTEFiles/Groups/CCCC/Forum/Spring07Forum.pdf [Published as an insert in Teaching English in the Two Year College, 34(2).].