News and Announcements

2017 IWCA Election

The IWCA is currently holding an election for five open positions: Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer, and two peer tutor representatives. These terms begin at IWCA in Fall 2017. The VP is a six-year commitment: VP becomes president in Fall 2019 and then past president in Fall 2021. The term for secretary is two year, renewable. The treasurer serves two years as treasurer, then two years as past treasurer. The peer tutor representative positions are one-year terms.

Duties of each office are described in both the IWCA constitution and in the bylaws (

The election will begin on Friday, September 1, and ballots must by cast by midnight Eastern Daylight Time on Friday, September 15. Votes will be cast electronically and anonymously. Only current IWCA members are permitted to cast votes.

Download more information about the election and the candidates’ statements, and download the revised IWCA Constitution for more information about the positions.

Upcoming Events

2017 Annual IWCA Conference

2017 Annual IWCA Conference  / Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers, Chicago, IL, November 10-13, 2017 / Writing Center work requires crossing borders and boundaries, infiltrating new systems, understanding the code, and sometimes a little sleight of hand. Join us in Chicago for a conference dedicated to understanding all our secret work. Register for the conference before July 1 for early registration rates.

IWCA Awards

IWCA Outstanding Article Award Nominations

Members of the Writing Center community are invited to nominate articles about writing center theory, practice, research, and history for the IWCA Outstanding Article Award. The Award will be presented at the IWCA Annual Conference held in Chicago, IL, November 10-13, 2017. Deadline for nominations: 15 July 2017. Read more about the nomination process.

IWCA Dissertation Grant

Katrina Bell, Southern Illinois University (PhD student) and Colorado College (Assoc. Director of the Writing Center)

Congratulations to Katrina Bell, who has been awarded the first IWCA Dissertation Grant for her project “Tutor, Teacher, Scholar, Administrator: Perceptions of Current and Alumni Graduate Consultants.” As Katrina describes it, this “three-part project contributes to the emerging sub-field of writing center studies that focuses on graduate writing consultants. [The] study provides a snapshot of the current state of professional development for writing center consultants at the graduate level and the future of writing center administration.”  The grant committee unanimously agreed that Katrina’s application stood out among a strong field—we are heartened and thrilled with the future of writing center studies given this crop of applications—and we look forward to learning of the results of her research.

2016 Muriel Harris Outstanding Service Award

Paula Gillespie, Florida International University


Bradley Hughes, University of Wisconsin-Madison

2014-15 IWCA Outstanding Book/Major Works Award

Tiffany Rousculp, Rhetoric of Respect: Recognizing Change at a Community Writing Center 

Rousculp presents a significant way of thinking about community writing centers that moves the role of the center from one of “empowerment” to one of respecting the purpose and agency of the writers who use the center.

Best Article

Nowacek, R. S., & Hughes, B. (2015). Threshold concepts in the writing center: Scaffolding the development of tutor expertise. In L. Adler-Kastner & E. Wardle (Eds.), Naming what we know: Threshold concepts of writing studies (pp. 171-185). Logan, UT: Utah State University Press.

The extended discussion [in “Threshold concepts”] on “expert outsiders” can be particularly useful to student tutors who may feel pressured to be insider experts on any given discipline. The emphasis on tutor outcomes (what they will gain through training) grounds the discussion in a manner that allows for consideration of assessment of tutor training processes, something that is increasingly important in program reviews. The references to explicit teaching are useful, especially in that many of us are coming from minimalist theories, and have student tutors who are struggling with some of the more indirect ways of teaching that are common in WC discussions.

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