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Writing Center Research Initiative

What is the WOU Writing Center Research Initiative?

At the Writing Center, we are diversifying our services to accommodate emerging populations at WOU. We are actively researching and focusing our knowledge to create new directions for writing center theory and practice. Professional staff and students work together to identify service gaps and to imagine solutions, and this partnership has become the Research Initiative.

Research Objectives

On a personal level, our goal is to learn lessons based on findings that bring college success to the students that we engage with in a professional and academic capacity at our Writing Center.  We also desire to provide academic support services in order to teach with strategies that have been proven to work and share that information with others providing services to support students in their academics.  On a university-wide scale, we aim to increase student retention and graduation rates through our excellence in assistance and service to our students.

Research Initiatives and Scholarly Products

  • March 2007: Presentation at College Composition and Communication Conference in New Orleans, LA
    “Writerly Self-Efficacy as a New Mission for Writing Centers”
    Katherine Schmidt and Joel Alexander
  • January 2012: Manuscript Published in Journal of Writing Assessment
    “The Empirical Development of an Instrument to Measure Writerly Self-Efficacy in Writing Centers”
    Katherine Schmidt and Joel Alexander
    NOMINATED FOR INTERNATIONAL WRITING CENTERS ASSOCIATION BEST ARTICLE AWARD 2012
  • WRITERLY SELF-EFFICACY SUMMARY: forthcoming
    PNWCA 2014
  • WRITING SUPPORT FOR BILINGUAL ENGLISH-SPANISH SPEAKERS Since 2008, our university Writing Center has examined over a thousand essays written by our Bilingual Spanish-English speaking students and has discovered error patterns aligning with data found in previous studies within the fields of TESOL, Bilingual Education, and Linguistics. We actively research the writing needs of our Spanish-speaking students, create and implement teaching strategies accordingly in one-on-one tutorials and specialized classroom workshops, and disseminate the information to our colleagues through academic journal articles and presentations at conferences.
    • June 2014: Manuscript Completed & Submitted
      “Poised to Support Bilingual Spanish-English Speakers: Composition Instructors and Writing Centers”
      Katherine Schmidt, Heidi Coley, and Dennis Butler
    • March 2012: Presentation at College Composition and Communication Conference in St. Louis, MO
      “Gateways for Monolinguistic Instructors: Tailored Instruction for Bilingual Spanish-English Speakers in First-Year Writing Courses and Writing Centers”
      Katherine Schmidt, Heidi Coley, and Dennis Butler
    • October 2010: Presentation at International Writing Centers Association Conference in Baltimore, MD
      “Writing Center as Ellis Island for Latin Americans: The Fastest Growing Yet Most Vulnerable Demographic in Higher Education”
      Katherine Schmidt, Heidi Coley, and Dennis Butler
    • October 2008: Presentation at International Writing Centers Association Conference in Las Vegas, NV
      “Empirically Identifying and Differentiating Among the Writing Needs of Domestic, International, and DELL* Student Writers”
      Katherine Schmidt, Chelsea Pfund, and Ryan Daven
      *domestic English language learners
  • WRITING CENTER STARTUP PROGRAM FOR VISITING INTERNATIONAL SCHOLARS OF ENGLISH WRITING SUMMARY: forthcoming
    Was Designed by: Katherine Schmidt and Dennis Butler
  • DIGITAL MEDIA IN THE WRITING CENTER
    PNWCA 2014
  • REGIONAL HOSTING
    Like the flutter of a butterfly’s wings can massively reconstruct the atmosphere’s weather, we believe a Writing Center, though small, can play a pivotal role in creating winds of change on its surrounding community. We collaborate with neighboring Writing Centers to make long-term effects on the behavior of the larger, dynamic system and atmosphere – our institutions – through hosting and participating in Writing Center conferences and events.

    • April 2010: Host the Pacific Northwest Writing Centers Association Conference
      WOU Writing Center Staff
    • June 2009: Host Oregon Writing Center Directors’ Day Out (DDO)
      Katherine Schmidt, Jennifer Morris, and Heidi Coley
  • WRITING SUPPORT FOR DEAF STUDENT-WRITERS January 2009: Manuscript published in Writing Lab Newsletter
    “Lessening the Divide: Stategies for Promoting Effective Communication between Hearing Consultants and Deaf Student-Writers”
    Katherine Schmidt, Marta Bunse, Kyzie Dalton, Nicole Perry, and Kayla Rau
  • April 2007: Presentation at Pacific Northwest Writing Centers Association Conference in Bellingham, WA
    “Writing Support for Deaf Students”
    Katherine Schmidt, Marta Bunse, Kynzie Dalton, Nicole Perry, and Kayla Rau

 

 

CONTACT US

Writing Center

503-838-8286 | or e-mail: writingcenter@wou.edu | Location: APSC 301