CFP for Praxis Fall 2017: Special Issue on Two-Year College Writing Research and Assessment


Today, Praxis: A Writing Center Journal would like to officially unveil the call for papers for its Fall 2017 issue on writing research and assessment in two-year community colleges and other institutions that have been under-represented (both in the larger academic culture and in writing center studies). Heading this issue will be Genie Giaimo, Assistant Professor of English and Director of the Writing Centers at Bristol Community College in Fall River, MA. You might remember Dr. Giaimo from an interview that our former managing editor, Thomas Spitzer-Hanks, conducted with her in July of last year, and we at Praxis are delighted to partner with her to publish this special issue. Below, find attached a copy of the CFP, and if you are interested in submitting an abstract for consideration, please direct all inquiries to Dr. Giaimo at 

For its Fall 2017 special issue, Praxis: A Writing Center Journal solicits writing center research with practical and theoretical applications about community colleges and historically under- represented institutions, such as two-year Tribal Colleges and two-year Historically Black Colleges. Nearly half of all students enrolled in higher education in the United States are enrolled in two-year colleges. Nationally, 58% of two-year college students receive aid, while 72% apply. Demographically, two-year college students are widely diverse in age, race, ethnicity, and income-status. Community colleges are largely non-residential and, while the majority (roughly 60%) of students are enrolled full-time and in for-credit programs, approximately 40% of students are enrolled part-time and in non-credit-bearing programs (American Association of Community Colleges). Because of all these reasons, among many others, two-year colleges serve some of the most at-risk students and suffer from some of the lowest retention rates within higher education. Yet community colleges can be, and are, sites of incredible academic achievement and are, once again, becoming an important element in Federal workforce and education policy (American Graduation Initiative, The Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act).What often gets dropped out of the conversation surrounding community colleges, however, is that they are also sites of innovative research, conducted by faculty and students.

Writing Centers are an important part of the community college open-access mission, yet, overwhelmingly, there is a dearth of centralized research on two-year writing centers that is produced by community college writing center administrators and faculty. While researchers and practitioners at the two-year college level have been responding to the call for further articulation of “best practices” locally with assessment and home-grown studies, there is a need for more shared resources and conversation, nationally. Thus, we invite submissions that interrogate issues related to research, assessment, and pedagogy within community college writing centers. We also welcome updated research that reflects upon the March 2006 focus issue of Teaching of English in the Two-Year College, which featured historical and current research on writing centers at the two-year college level.

Submissions could focus on (but are not limited to) scholarship on:

         --  RAD-based (replicable, aggregable, and data-supported) studies within community college writing centers.

         --   Assessment-focused studies of community college writing centers.

         --  The movement of writing centers into learning commons or “one-stop” models.

         --  The political and financial realities of community college writing centers.

         --  The state of the profession at two-year college writing centers.

         --  Moving writing centers into student support or other non-academic departments.

         --  Staffing and professional development for different types of writing center tutors: professional, peer, adjunct and full-time faculty.

         --  Peer tutors in community college writing centers.

         -- Transfer-of-writing-knowledge between two-year college writing centers and courses and/or four-year-colleges and their writing centers.

         --  The relationship between reading and writing in writing center sessions.

         --  Required attendance at community college writing centers.

         --  Directive and non-directive tutoring methods for students at two-year colleges.

         --  Working with students with disabilities in a two-year college writing center.

         --  Graduate training for community college writing center administrators.

         --  Servicing commuter-based student populations in community college writing centers.

         --  Student support services and points-of-access for at-risk students.

         --  Working with ESL/NNS populations at community college writing centers.

         --  Developmental program support within community college writing centers.

         --  Writing Center collaborations across the disciplines at community colleges.

         --  Conducting writing center research within two-year colleges and/or with peer tutor participation.

         -- Two-year Tribal Colleges or Historically Black Colleges.

         --  Utilizing assistive technologies and other technological inclusion.

         -- Community College writing center spaces and design.

         -- Poverty and community college writing centers.

         -- Racial, ethnic, and other diversity-inclusion in community college writing centers.

         --  Community writing center work.

         -- Workforce development initiatives carried out by two-year college writing centers.

         -- Writing fellows and embedded writing center tutor programs.

Submissions by writing center administrators working in two-year colleges are strongly encouraged.

Because this is an open-access online journal, we would like to publish a range of genres (e.g. short videos, training documents, research tools, interviews etc.) We will prioritize, however, empirical and RAD-based research and methods-focused studies, while still seeking pedagogical and programmatically-focused studies. We also encourage creative depictions of the lived experience of working within a community college writing center and welcome column submissions on personal experience or reflections from community college tutors—past and present—though these will be far shorter in length (500-800 words). Submission length is tied to the context or genre, but will generally follow the guidelines for Praxis, which can be reviewed here, with a word count for scholarly articles around 3,000 to 4,000 words. Please inquire with the special issue editor about multimodal submission formats.

All submissions should be formatted in MLA style and adhering to the standards of Praxis.

Submission Timeline: 
Proposal deadline (500 words and preliminary data/artifacts)            Sept. 15, 2016
Acceptance of Proposals Set                                                               Oct. 1, 2016
Full Manuscripts Due                                                                          Jan. 15, 2017
Manuscripts out to Review Board                                                       Jan. 15, 2017
Acceptances and Comments Sent Out                                                April 15, 2017
Final Drafts Due                                                                                  July 1, 2017
Page Proofs                                                                                         Over Summer
Publication                                                                                           Fall 2017

Submissions should be formatted as Word documents and sent to the special issue editor Genie Giaimo (