PCC Community Ed writing courses provide opportunities to learn, share, and grow with a community of peers

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adult students writing together

You may have heard that writing is good for the soul? It is! Writing with PCC Community Ed provides opportunities to learn, share, and grow with a community of peers. The writing process stretches the writer to craft and imagine different perspectives, and challenges them to dig deep into their brain to craft new and interesting angles, settings, narrative, dialogues and stories. With benefits like improved moods, healing properties, and reinforcing a better quality of life, there’s a reason why people love to sit down with PCC Community Ed – and a pen and paper, or at a computer – to write.

In fact, writing is so much more than just words on a page! It’s a form of art that expresses emotions, similar to dance, painting and sculpting. Writing can help ease stress, spark creativity and even help to discover the true self. The process of writing uses all four lobes of the brain – the frontal lobe, parietal lobe, occipital lobe and temporal lobe. And here’s a fun fact: “colygraphia” is the technical term for writer’s block, which occurs when writers have trouble generating new ideas for their work.

Writing takes on many forms:

Expository
This type of writing exposes, or sets forth facts. It’s the most common genre of writing you may encounter throughout the day, as this includes textbooks; journalism (except for opinion and editorial articles); business and technical writing; essays and instructions.

Descriptive
Descriptive writing is when you help the reader visualize a character, event, place or all of the above in detail. The objective is to create a vision where the reader can utilize all five senses. This type of writing gives the writer more flexibility and artistic freedom than expository writing. Categories in this genre include fiction, poetry, advertising and journal and diary writing.

Persuasive
Persuasive writing influences the reader to accept a particular point of view or take a specific action. You’ll find this type of writing in advertisements, editorials, reviews and proposals. It typically involves careful word choice, the development of logical arguments and a comprehensive summary.

Narrative
Narrative writing tells a story, whether real or imaginary. These pieces usually have characters, where the reader learns what happens to them. Narrative writing can also include dialogue. You’ll find narrative writing in all types of fiction (like novels and short stories), poetry, biographies, human-interest stories and anecdotes.

Research has found that expressive writing, where jot down your feelings without thinking about grammar or spelling, improves symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), asthma and rheumatoid arthritis; helps with recovery from childhood sexual abuse and postpartum depression; and improves the state of mind in those with Parkinson’s, cancer and many other health conditions.

Writing has been found to improve mental health, including symptoms of depression, anxiety, major depressive disorders, and even post-traumatic stress disorder among veterans. Researchers have found that writing about positive experiences can contribute to better moods. In a recent study, cancer patients were assigned a 20-minute writing task while waiting for their appointment. After the writing task, they were assessed, and again three weeks later. The researchers found that the writing produced changes in the way half of the patients thought about their illness, which was linked to demonstrating a significantly better quality of life.

For more information on writing classes offered at Portland Community College, check the schedule and sign up for a class today.

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PCC offers this limited open forum as an extension of the respectful, well-reasoned discourse we expect in our classroom discussions. As such, we welcome all viewpoints, but monitor comments to be sure they stick to the topic and contribute to the conversation. We will remove them if they contain or link to abusive material, personal attacks, profanity, off-topic items, or spam. This is the same behavior we require in our hallways and classrooms. Our online spaces are no different.