Library Publishes New Open Textbook for College Writing

Portland State University Library is pleased to announce the publication of EmpoWord: A Student-Centered Anthology & Handbook for College Writers by Shane Abrams, Adjunct Faculty, Portland State University and Portland Community College.

EmpoWord is a reader and rhetoric that champions the possibilities of student writing. The textbook uses actual student writing to exemplify effective writing strategies, celebrating dedicated college writing students to encourage and instruct their successors: the students in your class.

Through both creative and traditional activities, readers are encouraged to explore a variety of rhetorical situations to become more critical agents of reading, writing, speaking, and listening in all facets of their lives. Straightforward and readable instruction sections introduce key vocabulary, concepts, and strategies. Three culminating assignments (Descriptive Personal Narrative; Text-Wrestling Analysis; Persuasive Research Essay) give students a chance to show their learning while also practicing rhetorical awareness techniques for future writing situations.

This textbook is designed for students of first- and second-year college composition courses (in Oregon, WR-115, 121, 122, and 222), but it is also a great tool for college prep students, more advanced writers, or independent learners. Early teachers are encouraged to use the textbook to support them in curriculum design, and experienced teachers can use it to supplement their tried-and-true methods.

The book is licensed with a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.


Empoword is the newest of 20 open textbooks authored by faculty at Portland State University and published by Portland State University Library. PSU Library funds faculty authorship of open textbooks with the help of generous donor support, as part of our goal to reduce the cost of higher education for Portland State students.

Portland State University open textbooks have been downloaded more than 78,000 times all over the world.

Browse the complete collection of open textbooks at Portland State University Library