Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph. D.



Committee Chair

Mattingly, Carol, 1945-

Author's Keywords

Basic writing; Writing center


Writing centers; English language--Rhetoric--Study and teaching (Higher); Tutors and tutoring


Using Gloria Anzuldula's text Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza and Bruce Homer and Min-Zhan Lu's 2000 article, "Expectations, Interpretations and Contributions of Basic Writing" as conceptual framework, I conducted my dissertation on the effects of mandatory writing center consultations on basic writers enrolled in the class "Introduction to College Writing," at a private, liberal-arts college in south-central Kentucky. This dissertation is divided into five chapters. In Chapter I, I discuss the distancing of basic writers from writing center and composition scholarship and the need to revisit this relationship. In Chapter Two, I discuss the methodological and theoretical framework of the dissertation and my use of the quasi-experimental framework that incorporates both qualitative and quantitative data in addition to numbers, student narratives, and the various voices of myself, student writers, and writing consultants. In Chapter III, I outline how students used the writing center as a thirdspace in which to discuss their own borderland writings and the increased connection the students in the experimental section felt to the college community; in addition, I also discuss pass rates and class attendance. In Chapter IV, I outline the improvement in retention rates for the students required to visit the writing center and the increased amount of drafts students produced in the class. Finally, in Chapter V, I conclude the dissertation and offer places where future research may go, in addition to my own shortcomings as a researcher and further implications of my work.