Call for Proposals: Special Issue of WLN  

Submitted by Susan DeRosa and Stephen Ferruci, Associate Professors of English Eastern CT State University

Susan DeRosa and Stephen Ferruci are Associate Professors of English at Eastern Connecticut State University. They co-authored the textbook, Choices Writers Make: A Guide (Pearson, 2011), and they have collaborated lately on scholarly articles and conference papers on multimodal writing in the writing center and writing classroom. Their research laid the groundwork for the creation of Eastern’s Writing Center in 2008.

Title: Multimodal Writing in the Writing Center: Relationships, Roles, and Responsibilities

Students are increasingly composing and designing multimodal texts that combine sound, visual, performative, and textual components. Takayoshi and Selfe (2007) argue that students need to be versed in both critically reading and producing multimodal texts “if they hope to communicate successfully within the digital communication networks that characterize workplaces, schools, civic life, and span traditional cultural, national, and geopolitical borders” (3). As writers produce multimodal texts to respond to different rhetorical situations and assignments, writing centers need to find ways to work with students and the texts they design. While writing centers may have experience helping writers who include visual elements in their texts, (photos, graphs, charts, etc.), they may be less familiar with other modes with which writers choose to compose. Recent scholarship suggests a focus on these changing roles and the relationships between writing centers and writing classrooms as we engage with multimodal composers and their choices.

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CFP: Special Issue of WLN–What We Believe and Why: Educating Writing Tutors

Guest editors Karen Johnson and Ted Roggenbuck share their call for proposals, below.

Key to our success in the important work of writing centers is our effectiveness in providing tutor education. Our field has over three decades of scholarship on how to educate writing tutors in a multitude of settings, but the wealth and variety of resources can create challenges for those seeking guidance. However, that we also have a number of excellent and popular (though not universally used) resources such as The Bedford Guide for Writing Tutors, The Longman Guide to Peer Tutoring, and The Oxford Guide for Writing Tutors does suggest at least some consistency in how we educate tutors. But to what degree do we share core beliefs about tutor education, how do we know what aspects of our programs to prepare writing tutors are most effective, and to what areas are we not paying adequate attention? Moreover, what are effective contexts for educating tutors? Although credit-bearing courses appear to be ideal contexts for tutor education, what particular aspects of a course make it effective? And for directors who are unable to offer a course or even paid time for educating tutors, how can they effectively prepare tutors for the different rhetorical situations and writers they will encounter?

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CFP: CCCC Workshop on Research About Writing in Higher Education Outside the US

We are inviting brief proposals for up to twenty-four researcher-participant roles in a U.S. College Conference on Composition and Communication (CCCC) workshop focused on research about writing in higher education outside of the U.S.

We know that researchers around the world are interested in finding sites, physical and figurative, for serious cross-national conversation that includes multiple research traditions.

For the eighth year, we are planning to propose a workshop that (if accepted) will take place at the annual CCCC conference. The conference next year is in Tampa, Florida, US, from March 18-21, 2015.

The workshop is tentatively titled Deep Rewards and Serious Risks in International Higher Education Writing Research: Comfort Zones and Contact Zones.

This workshop, along with the exchanges we have before meeting at the conference, is designed to make space available at the CCCC conference for extended time to read, process, think through, and discuss in detail each other’s work. We have learned, through seven previous workshops and other international exchanges, that we all need this kind of time for real exchange, given that we come from different linguistic, institutional, political, geographic, theoretical and pedagogical places.

We want to engage researcher-participants from many countries and research traditions in an equal exchange dialogue, learning from each other: the primary focus is on the writing research itself.

The research can be focused on teaching or studying writing in any language. We are willing to help with translation of a text into English as needed, if the paper is accepted for the workshop.

The brief proposal should describe a research project you would be interested in sharing with other facilitators and participants. It can be completed or in process. By research, we mean a project with a focused research question, an identified methodology (qualitative, quantitative, ethnographic, historical, discourse analysis, etc), and the collection of data in some form.

The project should be “international” for a U.S. audience, by which we mean (*only* for the purposes of this U.S. call!!) carried out by either scholars in countries other than the U.S. or scholars collaborating deeply across borders, including U.S. borders, in any language. Your role in the workshop would be to provide a draft text about the research by the end of December 2014, to read the other facilitators’ texts before attending the CCCC conference, and to participate in the day-long workshop by leading a discussion about your project and participating in discussions of a subset of others’ projects.

View the 2014 Workshop Proposal to get an idea of what the overall proposal will look like. We’ve included the titles from last year’s workshop to give you an idea of the kinds of work we’ve exchanged in past sessions. We will send out a draft of the 2015 overall proposal when you send in your project description. You will be welcome to suggest changes to the overall proposal at that point. You may notice that the proposal is written with a U.S. readership in mind–this is because the proposal review committee is comprised primarily of U.S. scholars. We seek to convince this audience that many CCCC attendees have much to learn from writing research in traditions other than the ones they find most familiar–that writing research needs multiple perspectives from multiple contexts and traditions. We also know how critical it is for all scholars to be directly engaged with projects and research models from multiple research traditions.

Please submit your proposal by April 25th. The International Workshop Proposal Template includes the questions you will need to answer as you prepare your proposal. This proposal can be quite informal (it serves to help us determine appropriate projects, and only the title will appear in the program), so please feel free to send something along.

We strongly encourage you to submit a proposal to the CCCC as individual presenters, as well. The CCCC format does allow individuals to present at both a workshop and a concurrent session (it does not allow individuals to present at more than one concurrent session).

Thank you! Please write with any questions at all.

Cinthia Gannett and Tiane (Christiane) Donahue

Call for Participation – Global Writing Centers Course

Colleagues,

I am teaching a graduate/advanced undergraduate course at DePaul University (Chicago) beginning in late March that will focus on writing centers and writing programs WORLDWIDE.  As one of our projects, I’d like my students, who are themselves writing tutors in our writing center here at DePaul, to forge connections with others doing similar work (working with students and their writing, working within WID programs of any variety—in English and in the home languages) to exchange ideas about approaches, practices, challenges, and issues.   This communication/collaboration/participation would be done on an informal basis, using asynchronous or synchronous conferencing (email, Skype, etc.).

Right now, course planning is a work-in-progress.  If any of you are interested, I would love to hear from you.

Darsie Bowden
dbowden@depaul.edu

 

Make All Your Research Count on the Research Exchange

The Research Exchange Index (REx) speaks to and expands on Rich Haswell’s call for replicable, aggregable, data-driven research and to our field’s need for more readily available research models and mentors. In addition, REx is a site for both well known and otherwise unpublishedlocal studies conducted over the last ten years: all those studies of tutors and writers for your training; those reports on users and the progress they make that you haven’t published; that study someone else did that you replicated. We want these and published studies entered into our simple check-the-box/short answer form in order to help researchers, teachers, and other writing stakeholders address a wide range of concerns:

  • We have a standing need for access to research and researchers working on issues of shared concern.
  • Many important, even exemplary projects go unpublished, especially projects conducted for local audiences by writing centers, writing programs, or workplace and community groups; these valuable projects can and should be “counted” and aggregated with other studies.
  • Many useful studies by graduate and undergraduate students performed as part of internships, coursework, and thesis projects, are not collected as part of the data that informs our field.
  • Research in schools (K-12) as well as research in different communities and workplaces is often neglected across communities, difficult to find.
  • All research is “international”; we need to collect and connect our studies across borders.

In addressing these and other needs, REx is designed to be more comprehensive than a bibliography of previously published work. And data from studies that led to published work can be entered because REx only asks for quick summaries that will be searchable: you can even highlight your publication by providing a link to it.  REx will serve as a combination roster of active researchers and treasure trove of information about what researchers are studying and why.

We are now soliciting research reports during an initial 18 month collection period, from November 2011 through May 1, 2013. After the collection period closes, REx editors will review contributors’ materials, check facts, and copyedit the database contents to ensure its content searchability. Ultimately, the database along with scholarly essays about its contents will be submitted to an online publisher for review and open access publication. And the next collection period will begin again.

Visit REx now <http://researchexchange.colostate.edu/> and enter at least one past, current, or on-going project!

Call for Chapters: Identity and Leadership in Virtual Communities

I’m very excited to announce this forthcoming anthology from IGI Global, for which I’ll be a co-editor with Dona J. Hickey, the founder of our Writing-Across-the-Curriculum Program at Richmond.

Our full title is “Call for Chapters: Identity and Leadership in Virtual Communities: Establishing Credibility and Influence,” and that could describe much of the networking among writing-center professionals around the world. The book will cover non-academic uses of networked communities as well, and we welcome international submissions.

Read the full call for chapters and description of the book here.

Those interested in submitting a proposal should do so by 31 January; Dona and I will  review proposals in February with an eye toward notifying everyone by the end of the month. Our contact information is at the call for chapters, if you have a proposal ready or any questions.