Offering a Journal Article Writing Club: Instructional Outreach & Collaboration

Poster Description: This digital poster will describe a collaborative project between the library and writing center to offer graduate students a program about turning an assignment, thesis, or dissertation into an academic journal article. The initiative included weekly videos, a comprehensive research guide, and weekly Zoom meetings for quiet writing time.

Poster: View Sway presentation about this project.

Presenter Name(s): Mandi Goodsett, Cleveland State University

Presenter Bio: Mandi Goodsett is the Performing Arts and Humanities Librarian, as well as the OER & Copyright Advisor, at Cleveland State University. Her professional interests include open education, critical thinking and library instruction, and distance learning. You can reach Mandi and learn more about her work at

14 replies on “Offering a Journal Article Writing Club: Instructional Outreach & Collaboration”

Such a cool idea, Mandi! What fields have the majority of your attendees been from? Why do you think that is? Also, have you had any repeat attendees (students or faculty)?

Thanks, Ruth! We’ve mostly had folks from social science and humanities fields. The Belcher book is really aimed at students in these fields (not so much the STEM fields), so I think it was a good fit for them. I don’t think we had any repeat participants, except Mary and me of course. 🙂

Thanks, Mandi! I look forward to seeing how the club continues to evolve and how the new book works!

Thank you, Julie! That’s a good question, and one that I was worried about as the campus copyright librarian! In general, all of the content we produced and shared with participants was original. Any use we made of the book (e.g. following the chapter structure in the program) we felt was a fair use, as it didn’t interfere with the market for the book and was for an educational purpose. But it’s an important thing to consider when offering a program like this!

Thank you for your quick reply, Mandi. Also, prior to beginning this endeavor, had you published any works of your own or collaboratively? How familiar with publishing does one need to be to have beneficial knowledge to share with writing club participants?

That’s a good question too! I did have some publishing experience, but I really learned a lot from the book along with the other participants. I think the important thing is that the librarian can contribute knowledge of finding sources, publisher agreements/copyright, using citation managers, etc. (things we already know), and the writing center can provide writing help & advice. Using a book as a guide helps provide a resource to point to if participants have other questions. But I would say you don’t need tons of publishing experience to pull off a useful writing club program!

I really love this idea, and it sounds like your faculty and students do as well – great work!

Thanks so much for sharing Mandi! So to clarify, the book is intended for those who have written their dissertation and want to modify it into a journal article? Or is it for those who have a dissertation topic, and want to modify it into a journal article?

I also saw you mentioned Panopto for video creating. I’ve never used it before, but could you share more info about it?

Thanks so much for the info about the book and the research guide! As a Faculty Librarian (and doctoral student myself), I found it very helpful and have shared with my research group.

I’m so glad you found it helpful, Sila! Yes, the book we initially used is for folks who have already written a paper, thesis, or dissertation and want to turn that work into a journal article. That’s what makes it possible to do the transformation in 13 weeks — there isn’t a whole lot of original writing to do. That said, our new book is just about academic writing in general (so no need for a previously-written work), and we’re really liking it! So there’s no need to structure your writing club around that particular book!

And to your question about Panopto, it’s a video recording platform that we have an institutional license for on my campus. It allows us to record video, hosts the video, adds captions, and can limit viewing to just CSU viewers. If your campus doesn’t have Panopto, it would be totally possible to record similar videos using a free or widely available platform like Zoom, Screencast-o-matic, or even just PowerPoint.

I hope this helps! Please feel free to ask any other questions you have!

Thank you so much, Mandi! That is very helpful. Is Panopto what you recorded this presentation with? If so, it sounds a lot like my campuses’ VidGrid which I believe does the same.

Oh good! That’s great that your campus offers an option. No, I just recorded my presentation in Zoom, so that’s another easy option.