A Room of One's Own in the Academy: The Writing Center as a Feminized Space
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A recent statistical finding at the UWC revealed that among undergraduates, men are significantly less likely both to visit the center and to return for a subsequent consultation than women. This article explores potential contributing factors and implications with a view to encouraging writing centers to increase diversity with balanced approaches to gender-specific learning and motivational styles. Writing centers have been discussed as feminized spaces (Trachsel & Birnbaum) and in her 1999 article, “Real Men Don’t Do Writing Centers” in The Writing Center Journal, Margaret Tipper contended that the structure and practice of writing centers may not appeal to or work for male consultees. With this in mind, our research project group at the Undergraduate Writing Center (UWC) at The University of Texas at Austin (UT) used consultee records collected during the Fall 2006 and Spring 2007 academic year to statistically test the degree to which being male or female predicted whether students both initially visited and returned to the UWC.