Call for Papers

We are no longer accepting submissions for MWCA 2013.  If you still wish to attend, you can register here.

Chicago’s beloved “L”—the elevated train system—is the bloodstream of the city in that it functions as a lifeline connecting people to each other for work, education, family, friends, and fun. The L’s iconic map delineates how each colorful line of this public transportation system branches out to most of the varied and diverse neighborhoods and leads back to the “Loop”—the heart and downtown of Chicago. We see the L as a ripe metaphor for the work we do as peer writing tutors and administrators. Our programs may be structured differently, our staff come from a range of backgrounds, the writers we work with are diverse, and the ways we work with writers may be varied, but, at the end of the line, we all end up—sooner or sometimes much later–in the same place with the goal to help people become better writers.

Just as the L connects these diverse and varied neighborhoods, so we as peer writing tutors, administrators, and programs have the opportunity to help writers understand and connect with the variety of modalities that are available in today’s digitized educational environments. In addition, we are constantly finding new ways through technology to make our services available to writers— through online chat forums, written feedback via email, and even video chat—in addition to the use of technology within more ―traditional‖ face-to-face appointments. Thus, just as the “L” is constantly undergoing renovation and expansion, our work as tutors has begun to focus on the new and changing modalities that we and other writers work with today.

Beyond mapping modalities, the 2013 MWCA conference also invites submissions that address themes of connectivity and diversity. How can peer writing tutors build rapport with writers? How can our programs forge meaningful connections with programs across campus or in the community? What does diversity look like in our programs? How can we diversify our strategies? How can we better meet the needs of increasingly diverse student populations? What place does linguistic diversity have in our programs?

Proposal Deadline: Monday, April 1, 2013

Possible Formats

Concurrent session periods will be 75 minutes long, and proposed sessions may take any of the following forms:

  • Individual presentations (20 minutes each – will be grouped with 2 other individual presentations)
  • Panel presentations
  • Roundtables
  • Fishbowl presentations
  • Workshops
  • Performances pieces
  • If you have another format in mind, please specify.

Also welcome are proposals for:

  • Posters
  • Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

Possible Topics

These include but are not limited to:

  • Administration
  • Assessment
  • Community college writing center issues
  • High school writing center issues
  • Innovative practices
  • Multilingual writers
  • Reflecting on/questioning current practices
  • Social justice
  • Space/location
  • Technology
  • Tutor education/development
  • WAC/WID and writing centers
  • Writing fellows
  • Writing center research
  • Writing center theory

Proposal Submission

Proposals, which include a 50-word abstract and a 500-word narrative description, will undergo blind review. Submit your proposal at MWCA Profile (you’ll need to register if you’re not a current user).

Proposals should be as specific as possible about the role of the presenters, the participation of others in attendance, and the contribution the session makes to writing center studies.

We will begin accepting proposals Friday, February 1, 2013 and the deadline for proposal submission is Monday, April 1, 2013.


Questions about the call for proposals may be directed to the following people:

  • Carol Martin, Chair of the Executive Board of MWCA and Director of the Writing Center at North Park University via e-mail ( or phone (773-244-4918).
  • Rachel Holtz, Treasurer of the MWCA and Coordinator of Academic Writing Support Services at Northeastern Illinois University via e-mail( or phone (773-442-4491)