In the mid 2000s, Spigelman and Grobman’s On Location: Theory and Practice in Classroom-Based Writing Tutoring established groundwork for building bridges between writing programs and classrooms through course-embedded tutoring. A few years later, Hughes and Hall’s special issue of Across the Disciplines on “Rewriting Across the Curriculum: Writing Fellows as Agents of Change in WAC” developed course-embedded approaches even further. Many writing centers have used these texts as foundations for expanding their initiatives beyond traditional one-to-one generalist tutoring—where writing centers are often physically, if not pedagogically, disconnected from the classroom. Via course-embedded work, writing centers have become more actively involved with and connected to classroom and curricular outcomes. This critical shift in writing center philosophy—moving from independent to integrated programming, moving out of the center and into the classroom—can be viewed, in light of Jackie Grutsch McKinney’s recent work in Peripheral Visions for Writing Centers, as a challenge to the dominant paradigm of writing center lore of the last three decades.
Highlighting the importance and complexities of going “on location,” this special issue of Praxis examines course-embedded writing support programs facilitated by writing centers. As writing centers continue to develop and grow successful course-embedded tutoring programs, many others still struggle with establishing the foundational work for such initiatives at their institutions. To advocate for the long-term viability of course-embedded programs, directors need to provide administrators and faculty with programmatic and pedagogic rationales that outline the benefits of connecting writing centers to classrooms. They need to draw from models that have worked well at other institutions and learn from others that have been less successful. This special issue of Praxis seeks to curate recent contributions to the conversation of course-embedded tutoring programs facilitated by writing centers—with an eye toward both theory and practice—in an effort to help directors develop strong, sustainable programs of their own.