National Council of Teachers of English Logo

Computers and Writing - Previous Revision

Mike Palmquist

Colorado State University

Scholars in the area of computers and writing address issues related to the use of technologies to support writing and the teaching of writing. As early as the 1960s, members of the field of English Studies considered how computers might be used to support writing instruction, initially through computer-aided instruction programs such as IBM’s Teaching Machines Project and the Plato Project’s TUTOR, as well as the somewhat later TICCIT program, and later through the development of custom programs (for early work in CAI within English Studies, see Burns, 1977; Nold, 1975; Selfe and Wahlstrom, 1979, 1983; and Yerkey, 1976). By the late1970s, researchers and teachers were exploring the use of word processing technologies. Arguably, research within English Studies had a significant impact on the rise of the modern word processor (for early work in the field, see the essays in William Wresch’s 1984 collection, Computers in English Class: Finally Beyond Grammar and Drills; for reviews of later work, see Bridwell and Ross, 1984; and Hawisher, 1986, 1988). Key areas of study have included:

  • style and grammar checkers
  • commenting and review systems
  • network-based communication
  • hypertext and hypermedia
  • contemporary digital literacies
  • online writing labs and writing services
  • digital writing environments
  • computer-based writing assessment
  • social media and social networking
  • intersections of technology, race, gender, and class
  • computer-supported classrooms, blended classes, and online classes

Leading Journals 

Computers and Composition

Computers and Composition Online

Kairos A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy

Relevant Organizations

NCTE Assembly on Computers in English

CCCC Committee on Computers in Composition and Communication

Computers and Writing Clearinghouse

Relevant Email Discussion Lists






Document and Site Resources

Share This On:

Page Tools:

Join NCTE Today


Copyright © 1998-2017 National Council of Teachers of English. All rights reserved in all media.

1111 W. Kenyon Road, Urbana, Illinois 61801-1096 Phone: 217-328-3870 or 877-369-6283

Looking for information? Browse our FAQs, tour our sitemap and store sitemap, or contact NCTE

Read our Privacy Policy Statement and Links Policy. Use of this site signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use

Visit us on:
Facebook Twitter Linked In Pinterest Instagram