Writing to Learn, Learning to Write

Professor Tom Long gives a lecture in the Widmer Wing of the School of Nursing. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)
Professor Tom Long gives a lecture in the Widmer Wing of the School of Nursing. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Professor Thomas Lawrence Long holds an unusual position on campus. He’s an associate professor-in-residence in the School of Nursing. But his background is not in nursing; it’s in writing.

A former professor of English before joining the UConn faculty, he also teaches in the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program. He has extensive expertise in technical writing, and conducts research focused on medical humanities and health studies.

When the School of Nursing expanded its research activities in 2007, Long was asked to develop a writing support program for nursing students and faculty. He also created the Nursing Writing.com website, a forum for news, information, and advice about writing.

He is co-author of the book Writing in Nursing: A Brief Guide with a colleague, Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor of Nursing Cheryl Beck, who is one of the nation’s leading researchers on postpartum depression.

We talked about the wide range of writing about nursing practice, and his work in the Center for Nursing Scholarship & Innovation.

One of Long’s recent projects was speaking at the TEDx UConn event, which is organized by students at campuses around the country. He discussed his research on the topic of “How Civil War Nurses Brought Change to Health and Women,” which focuses on Sarah Emma Edmunds, who disguised herself as a man and served in the Union Army and wrote Nurse and Spy in the Union Army; Mary Ann Bickerdyke, a hospital administrator for Union soldiers; and Mary Livermore, a journalist and women’s rights advocate who organized auxiliary societies.

Listen to Long discussing his work with Ken Best of UConn360 podcast:

 

 

For full episodes of the UConn 360 podcast, visit uconn.edu/uconn360-podcast.