When the story of the university changes …

… what happens to the mission of the writing center? Unter diesem Titel habe ich für den Sammelband von Joe Essid & Brian McTague, Writing Centers at the Center of Change (2020) Veränderungen an der PH Freiburg im Bereich des Literacy Managements analysiert und die damit verbundenen Konsequenzen für das Schreibzentrum kritisch beleuchtet.

Mit der Pademie kommen weitere Veränderungen auf die Hochschulen weltweit zu, welche weitere Konsequenzen für institutionelles, aber auch für individuelles Literacy Managament hervorbringen. Schreibzentren sehe ich hierbei in einer besonderen Rolle als change agent, u.a. als Instanz, die im Bereich der literalen Praxen die sich verändernden Bedürfnisse in Studium und Lehre identifizieren und bedienen hilft. Auf diese Weise entsteht m.E. eine besondere Gelegenheit zur (extra-)curricularen Neustrukturierung in Sachen Schreiben und Lesen im akademischen Kontext.

Das WLN, A Journal of Writing Center Scholarship, widmet dieser speziellen Herausforderung für Schreibzentren eine Sonderausgabe. Hier ist der call for papers dafür:

Colleagues,

We hope you will consider proposing an article for a special edition of WLN on the “Post-Pandemic Writing Center.” The detailed CFP is posted below as well as attached to this email. We look forward to receiving your proposals.

Best,
Noreen Lape and John Katunich
Norman M. Eberly Multilingual Writing Center
Dickinson College

CFP: Special Issue of WLN: The Post-Pandemic Writing Center

We invite you to submit proposals for a special edition of WLN about writing centers after the pandemic recedes. These proposals should address the lessons learned over the last year about writing, writers, writing centers, and writing tutoring. For writing centers, the pandemic has caused losses to students’ learning and well-being that must be addressed; at the same time, it has prompted a wide range of innovations in our work.

It is clear that the pandemic has impacted the learning of many writers and writing tutors over this last year— some completing their last years of high school largely or entirely online, others beginning college careers under similar circumstances. For many writers, learning amid a pandemic has meant fewer connections with peers and in some cases a weakened sense of classroom community, not to mention the tremendous strains on students’ mental health from isolation, and anxiety over the course of the pandemic.  All of this points to a reality in which students will feel the ripples of the pandemic for years to come— including disrupted writing instruction, different kinds of experiences with peer review, and fewer opportunities to connect to the writing center as a physical space and community. We can also ask how this cohort of writers may come with higher levels of resilience and self-direction and how writing centers can, in the coming years, leverage those writers’ strengths.

It is also clear that the pandemic has created opportunities for innovation in writing centers. Many writing centers across secondary and higher education have worked quickly in a challenging environment to completely revamp the way they deliver effective and meaningful learning support. Writing centers that were entirely or mainly face-to-face had to reimagine themselves in new modalities. As faculty and students faced new challenges with remote, online, and hy-flex learning, writing centers responded in kind, re-assessing the populations they serve, the spaces they occupy, the assignments they support, and the groups they recognize as stakeholders. The exigencies of disruption spurred on changes that many view as innovations that they will continue to develop when things are “back to normal.”

For this special issue of the WLN, we invite papers that consider the ways in which writing centers can emerge from the pandemic as more responsive, resilient, and innovative. We encourage a wide variety of submissions, especially those that go beyond mere program description to investigate one or more of the following questions:
How did the pandemic cause you to reach out to new populations of students and/or faculty stakeholders?
How did the pandemic disruption cause you to re-see the practice of tutoring?
How has your writing center adapted to meet the needs of student cohorts (e.g. first years) whose learning and/or well-being was most affected by the pandemic?
How did your writing center change its role within your institution?
How have you reimagined writing center space as a result of the pandemic?
What new technologies and new tutoring strategies have you brought from the disruption to your post-pandemic writing center?
How has an increase in online learning and online assignments affected your writing center?
How did you forge connections with other writing centers/writing center directors during the pandemic? What did those new collaborations yield?
What new tutor training practices did you develop as a result of having to switch to remote learning and online tutoring?
What did you learn during the pandemic about building and sustaining community among tutors?

Schedule
Send article proposals (300-500 words) by April 1 to Noreen Lape at lapen@dickinson.edu<mailto:lapen@dickinson.edu> or John Katunich at katunicj@dickinson.edu<mailto:katunicj@dickinson.edu>. Please provide full contact information with your submission. In your proposal, clearly describe your focus, the theoretical and research base from which you will draw, and your plans for structuring a 3000-word article or a 1500-word essay for a Tutor’s Column (Works Cited and Notes included in the word count).
Invitations to submit full articles will be issued June 1.

Manuscripts for WLN<https://wlnjournal.org/> will be due December 1.

Noreen Lape is the Director of the Writing Program/Norman M. Eberly Multilingual Writing Center at Dickinson College and the author ofInternationalizing the Writing Center: A Guide to Developing a Multilingual Writing Center (Parlor Press, 2020).

John Katunich is the Associate Director of the Writing Program and Multilingual Writers Specialist at Dickinson College and the co-editor of TESOL and Sustainability:  English Language Teaching in the Anthropocene (Bloomsbury, 2020).

About literacymanagement

Members of the ILM consortium will share news about their local ILM program and ongoing collaborative projects. Participants of the ILM certificate program are encuraged to collaborate with any partner or project.
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