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From the editors.

Writing the "From the Editors" column always starts the same way, every time: we go back to the essays we've worked with for the past several months to read with new eyes--to look up from the article-trees, so to speak, so we can survey the issue-forest. What are the overarching themes we see that connect essay to essay and authors to readers? How does this collection of works express both the new and the enduring values of the field?

This time as we read on an impressive array of topics--the future of the field, pedagogies for helping writers and the tutors who work with them, the role of identity in the writing center--we saw one topic treated again and again: working together. That is, each of these essays, it seemed to us, speaks about our ways of reaching out--to writers, to tutors, and to the larger writing center community across the globe. Thus "Empowering L2 Tutoring: A Case Study of a Second Language Writer's Vocabulary Learning" by Carol Severino and Elizabeth Deifell helps us better understand how we can work together with those non-native speakers who visit our centers. Steven Corbett, in "Using Case Study Multi-Methods to Investigate Close(r) Collaboration: Course-Based Tutoring and the Directive/Nondirective Instructional Continuum," also employs case study methods to examine the complex connections between tutors, writers, and faculty in course-based tutoring. And in this issue's Theory In/To Practice feature, "Using Dialogic Reflection to Develop a Writing Center Community of Practice," Mark Hall shows us how to use a blog to work more closely with our tutors--or, to be more exact, to get out of our tutors' way a bit as they work with one another to reflect more deeply on their work. Likewise, when reviewing Harry Denny's Facing the Center: Toward an Identity Politics of One-to-One Mentoring, Beth Boquet draws our attention to similar connections. Not only does Denny's book help us understand the ways in which our differences can help or hinder our communal work in the writing center, but, in her description of the excellencies of Denny's text, Boquet writes, "[t]utors and directors should enjoy working through sections together." There it is again: working together.

Rightly, this collaborative focus is sharply framed by the first essay in the issue, Andrea Lunsford and Lisa Ede's "Reflections on Contemporary Currents in Writing Center Work," the keynote address from the 2010 International Writing Centers Association joined conference with the National Conference on Peer Tutoring in Writing. Here Lunsford and Ede not only celebrate centers that "serve as sites of collaboration that challenge hierarchies and traditional ways of producing knowledge" but also remind us of the people--both faculty and students--who give our work shape and value. Such sentiments seem particularly apt as the basis for a keynote address, for the IWCA and NCPTW conferences are two key venues where we as a field come to work and to celebrate together.

And, of course, as collaborators who work with one another and with the writers, reviewers, and production and editorial staff to create this journal, we feel firsthand the value and honor of this togetherness. So thanks to the many hands that help make light work of Writing Center Journal!

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Author:Ianetta, Melissa; Fitzgerald, Lauren
Publication:Writing Center Journal
Date:Mar 22, 2011
Previous Article:Review: Writing Centers and the New Racism: A Call For Sustainable Dialogue and Change Laura Greenfield and Karen Rowan, eds.
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