Recent writing center scholarship has discussed the roles of valued practices in writing centers and the implications Universal Design (UD) for writing center work. This thesis extends such lines of inquiry by bringing these two conversations together to explore the potential of UD principles as a catalyst for writing center tutor reflection on valued tutoring practices. In a semester long study, data were collected in the form of individual and dialogic tutor reflection through surveys, individual interviews, reflective writing prompts, and a focus group. The data were analyzed to examine how tutors formed their tutoring practices and how they understood the relationship between UD principles and the values that undergird their work in the writing center. This thesis outlines the ways two tutors' experiences both within and beyond the writing center shaped their interpretation and application of their center's valued practices. Further, this thesis discusses insight from the tutors' creative and dynamic applications of the principles of UD to their work in the writing center. Tutors' experiences from outside the center are laminated with experiences from tutor training and writing center sessions in intricate ways that highlight the significance of both tutors' lives outside the center and a writing center's infrastructure in tutors' interpretation and implementation of tutoring practices. Ultimately, the thesis argues for the importance of structured reflection that prompts tutors to examine the formation of their own practices and the values and beliefs embedded in both their individual practices and a center's shared valued practices, suggesting strategies for facilitating this reflection through tutor writing and tutor-to-tutor dialogue.
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Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Writing and Rhetoric
English; Rhetoric and Composition
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Wisz, Eric, "Examining the Values in Our Valued Practices: Universal Design Principles as a Catalyst for Tutor Reflection" (2021). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2020-. 586.