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Line by Line publishes second issue

On March 11, when the University of Dayton English department released the second issue of Line by Line: A Journal of Beginning Student Writing, English lecturer and journal editor Ann Biswas had several reasons to take pride:

  • Student submissions doubled from the first issue.
  • More than 700 people have downloaded winning compositions this academic year — mostly from within the United States, but also from Malaysia, Australia, Saudi Arabia, France, Great Britain and elsewhere. “Students can see the pins drop on the map,” Biswas said of the Google world map application at the bottom of the journal website. “We can show them that people all over the world are reading their work.”
  • The journal’s award for top writing — which comes with a $200 scholarship — is now named in memory of longtime English professor Barbara Farrelly, who spent much of her 30-plus-year career at UD teaching English composition and the first-year writing seminar. She died in August 2013. The journal has two additional awards worth $100 each for best writing in a selected genre.

Hosted on eCommons, UD’s institutional repository, the journal provides stable links for portfolios; motivates students to use library, peer and faculty resources to improve their writing; and gives them firsthand experience in submitting papers for publication.

“It really goes well with our philosophy that writing is rewriting — a fine-tuning process,” Biswas said.

The collection, review and publication processes are quite straightforward, she said: “The eCommons platform is so user-friendly. Once you get the hang of it, it’s great. Now we’re publishing a real journal of undergraduate work, and what’s really great for us as faculty is that we can use the writing already published here as models for the work we assign in our courses. If we assign a research paper, we can point to Line by Line for examples of four or five excellent research papers.”

In recognition of Ann Biswas’ work to launch and oversee Line by Line: A Journal of Beginning Student Writing, we present her with the coveted Digital Commons Snuggie, a blanket with sleeves.

If you’d like to discuss how to start a journal on eCommons, contact Maureen Schlangen.

- Maureen Schlangen, E-scholarship and communications manager

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