2024 Tutor Conference

SoCal WCA 2024 Tutor Conference Call for Proposals: Collaboration, Culture, and Transformation

The Southern California Writing Centers Association invites proposals for our 2024 Tutor Conference. This year’s theme is: “Collaboration, Culture, and Transformation.” The conference will be held in-person on Friday March 1, 2024 from 10:00am – 3:00pm at Bakersfield College. Check-in begins at 9:00am.

In recent years, writing centers have reaffirmed their resiliency, and writing center tutors and administrators have faced the changing social and technological landscapes with grace and creativity. We want to hear from you about how you are envisioning and shaping the future of writing centers and tutoring. How has–and should–collaboration and campus writing culture transform in the years ahead? And how do we value the labor that embodies writing centers and negotiate its transformation?

Facing new institutional practices, labor discussions, and technological advancements,  writing center tutors and administrators have continued to contribute to institutional change, particularly through collaboration. In “Writing Centers, Enclaves, and Creating Spaces of Change Within Universities,” Bronwyn T. Williams argues that:  

We have much to bring to the institution in addition to writing pedagogy. Every time we act on and articulate our values about identity, language, and culture, we create the possibility for those ideas to circulate to other students, faculty, and family and friends outside the university and recreate social fields that will encourage change and nurture those values from the inside out (18).  

Indeed, writing centers are often celebrated for their collaboration with partners, from summer academic programs to writing departments to disciplinary communities to affiliation-based writing circles. Still writing centers continue to establish and re-establish their roles on campuses across California and beyond. The growing presence of “generative AI” and the feeling of contingency are necessitating our need to be agents rather than subjects of current and future conversations (WCJ Vol. 41., No. 1).

Building on the theme of collaboration, culture, and transformation in writing centers, we call for proposals that respond to the spirit of the following questions. These questions are not meant to be limiting; they are intended to offer starting points for presentations that you may want to consider. 

  • How do you see writing center work informing your future?
  • What role might AI have in future writing centers and writing practices?
  • How are writing centers addressing the potential usage of generative AI? How should they?
  • What are ways of framing AI usage and promoting the student as a writer?
  • How is technology transforming the academic experience of college students?
  • What “pedagogical” trends are writing centers adopting or reimagining for the future?
  • What kinds of change do you think writing tutors—and writing centers—can help campuses imagine differently? 
  • How have you, your writing center, and your fellow tutors imagined building community and partnerships across campus and beyond campus? What was–or could be–the impact of these partnerships?
  • In what ways might “identity” be acknowledged and embraced in writing tutoring interactions?
  • What role does self-care and wellness play in writing centers, in tutoring sessions, and/or in tutor training? 

Proposal Submission Information

We invite proposals for 10-12 minute or 50-minute presentations, roundtable discussions, or workshops. Please submit your proposal via the conference submission form by 5PM (PST) on December 8, 2023. The Proposal Review Committee (PRC) will be in touch about the status of your proposal by mid-January 2024.

Proposal format: A 50-word abstract and a 250-word description of the session.

Session Formats:

  • 10-12 minute presentations: Ten-to-twelve minute presentations will be combined into panels with approximately three presentations. For this format, each panelist presents their findings. For example, findings can be in the form of original research findings; claims or questions developed from an analysis and synthesis of writing center literature; answers or preliminary claims to a focused inquiry/research question. In contrast to a roundtable discussion, a 10-12 minute presentation is where the presenter(s) has predetermined assertions or “answers” to share and discuss while leaving room for an additional 3-4 minutes of Q&A. Total presentation time with Q&A is no more than 15 minutes. We encourage you to consider innovative, interactive delivery methods. (Total Panel Time: 50 minutes)
  • Fifty-minute presentations: This comprehensive opportunity allows for presenters to share their findings in the form of claims or questions developed from an analysis and synthesis of writing center literature; answers or preliminary claims to a focused inquiry/research question. In contrast to a roundtable discussion, the 50-minute presentation is where the presenter(s) have predetermined assertions or “answers” to share and discuss. Suggested format is a 35-40-minute presentation followed by 10 to 15 minutes of Q&A. This format is encouraged for groups of three or more presenters. We encourage you to consider innovative, interactive delivery methods. (Total Time: 50 minutes)
  • Roundtable discussions: This option typically includes a discussion led by groups of 3 or more presenters. The format means presenters introduce the topic and take turns facilitating an interactive discussion on a question, topic, or issue relevant to the conference theme. The goal of a roundtable discussion is to collectively generate and exchange ideas with audience members who can consider them in their individual tutoring practice or share with their writing center. Typically, tutors who choose this format aim to explore a current issue or question that they are in the preliminary stages of trying to answer or address. The nature of this format allows for a valuable opportunity to exchange ideas amongst tutors across different writing centers; this format is highly interactive. (Total Discussion Time: 50 minutes) 
  • Workshops: Facilitators lead participants in a hands-on activity (rather than a presentation only) to teach tangible skills related to writing center work and the conference theme of the future of writing centers. Workshops are typically more interactive, where the audience has an opportunity to practice an activity during the session time. (Total Workshop Time: 50 minutes)
  • Posters: Posters are Back!  Posters sessions will take place in a digital asynchronous format. The poster can be an extension of a conference session or a new topic the presenter(s)  want to engage the writing center community in through asynchronous discussion. The poster session will require using a digital format like Prezi, Padlet, Google Slides, or Canva. Each poster will be shared with the conference attendees by way of a QR code to link attendees to your work. There should be a way to contact the poster presenter(s) to engage in conversation. These sessions will take place during the community hour at the conference.


Azima, Rachel. “Stereotypes or Validation: Lessons Learned from a Partnership between a Writing Center and a Summer Academic Program for Incoming Students of Color.” The Writing Center Journal, vol. 38, no. 1/2, 2020, pp. 73–102. JSTOR, https://www.jstor.org/stable/27031264. Accessed 24 Aug. 2023.

Herb, Maggie M., et al. “Contingency and Its Intersections in Writing Centers: An Introduction.” The Writing Center Journal, vol. 41, no. 1, 2023, pp. 1–6. JSTOR, https://www.jstor.org/stable/27220889. Accessed 24 Aug. 2023.

Williams, Bronwyn T. (2022) “Writing Centers, Enclaves, and Creating Spaces of Change Within Universities,” Writing Center Journal: Vol. 40 : Iss. 3, Article 2. DOI: https://doi.org/10.7771/2832-9414.1015