CWPA Labor Resource Center Home

Welcome to the Council of Writing Program Administrators Labor Resource Center. We’re grateful to the directors of CSAL for hosting this project.

 

What is the CWPA Labor Resource Center?

The CWPA Labor Resource Center is designed to serve two overlapping purposes. First, it’s a repository of materials that WPAs and other members of writing programs can use to support their efforts towards labor equity/equality. If you’re trying to find an evaluation scheme that’s fairer to your NTT faculty, we have some. If you’re renegotiating your job description and want examples to work from, you can find them here. In other words, the idea is that for all those times somebody has posted to the WPA-l that they need a certain kind of document or examples of something, they should be able to come here and find it. Second, and the reason we’re excited to be hosted by CSAL, is that the repository also becomes an archive of writing program documents for people who are researching labor issues in the field.

 

To that end, we have arranged the contents into categories you can navigate from the home page: job descriptions, hiring documents, evaluation documents, and more. We also have a section where you can find relevant position statements from different professional organizations all in one place as well as a section that includes bibliographic information for scholarship and research on labor.

 

History

The Resource Center started as a packet of information that Michelle LaFrance and Seth Kahn compiled for a pre-conference institute at the CWPA conference in 2013. During the Institute, called “Running a Labor-Friendly Writing Program,” we not only distributed the documents that became the seed for this idea, but started collecting others from participants with the idea of simply creating a Google Drive folder where people could access them. By the end of that day, we had also decided to ask the CWPA leadership to consider forming a Task Force to recommend ways for the organization to support labor equity more fully, and that began a chain of events that led to the formation of the Labor Committee, charged with creating and populating this space. At about the same time we received that charge from the CWPA leadership, we learned about the formation of CSAL, and it seemed like a natural collaboration.

 

Contributors/Committee members

Current members of the CWPA Labor Committee: Darci Thoune (co-chair), University of Wisconsin-La Crosse; Seth Kahn (co-chair), West Chester University of PA; Michelle LaFrance, George Mason University; Megan Titus, Rider University; Genevieve Garcia de Mueller, University of Texas, Rio Grande Valley (Exec Board Liaison); Andy Frazee, Georgia Tech; Jennifer Eidum, Elon University; Ryan Dippre, University of Maine; Mark Brantner, National University of Singapore; Annie Del Principe, Kingsborough Community College.

 

Vision for the future of the Resource Center

We would like the Resource Center to become not only a clearinghouse for information on workers and working conditions in our field, but also a venue for labor organizing. If it can be as interactive as we hope, it will serve both purposes at once–a place people can come both to find and leave information, and a place for people to find collaborators.

 

Based on our own research and feedback we’ve gotten from colleagues–informally and at a presentation we did on the Resource Center at the CWPA 2017 annual meeting, we intend to develop several new areas of the site. If you have other ideas you’d like to see in addition to these, please let us know!

  • Who to Work With: an area devoted to helping WPAs navigate your institutions to get the support you need (e.g., understanding unions; a primer on deciphering chains of decision-making authority; what Human Resources does)
  • Sample Contracts (hiring agreements, although a section on the kinds of relevant provisions you might find in collective bargaining agreements is possible too)
  • Tools for figuring out to allocate and credit your time
  • Advocacy tools
  • FAQ, or (as somebody has suggested) “What Do I Do When….?”
  • Tips on Negotiating Job Offers, Position Descriptions, Etc.
  • Assessment Issues, i.e., both labor-sensitive assessment protocols and assessments that include/account for labor-related issues
  • Class-size research
  • Policies on workload distribution for NTT faculty (i.e., credit for scholarship/service; leaves/teaching reassignments)
  • Advice for transition from graduate student into faculty

 

Position Descriptions

Features job postings for writing program, writing center, and composition positions.

Hiring Documents

Features job descriptions, screening processes, and job-seeking advice.

Evaluation Materials

Self-evaluation forms, teaching evaluation forms across universities, and evaluation guidelines.

Academic Labor Syllabus

This syllabus was created in the spirit of Candice Benbow’s “Lemonade Syllabus” and other collections of references and resources that provide context for current events. In that way, it can be used by individuals who want to learn more about the topic of academic labor in composition. It has also been designed to be adapted–whole or in part–to the classroom.

Position Statements and Resolutions

This page responds to two overlapping exigencies. First, it’s a convenient place to find statements from multiple organizations without having to visit all their websites. As those statements are revised/updated/replaced, then this should also be the place people can reasonably expect to find the most recent ones. Second, it’s an attempt to respond to Provision A.1 of the Indianapolis Resolution (linked below), which “call[s] upon disciplinary and professional organizations such as NCTE/CCCC, ADE, MLA, RSA, and CWPA to consolidate and publicize the numerous extant professional standards documents on one user-friendly, accessible website; and where appropriate to revise or update those standards.”

Databases and Research

Comprehensive studies and crowdsourced compilations of writing program resources, support services, and professional development. 

Links to Other Organizations

Links/contact information for other organizations that work on academic labor issues: disciplinary associations, unions, independent advocacy groups, institutes.