Writing and Literacies SIG 137
Message from SIG Chair

Welcome to the Writing & Literacies SIG!

We are a vibrant, strong SIG with a diverse membership, and we hope you’ll find a home here. 

Each year, we work to offer a broad program at the annual AERA conference, thanks currently to the hard work of our Program Chair Amy Stornaiuolo, our Treasurer Anna Smith, our Communication Chair, Jayne Lammers, our SIG Service Team (see below), including the Awards Committee Chair, Donna Alvermann, and all of our volunteer reviewers. 

If you’re a prospective member, please join our community:

  • Share and promote your writing and literacies research to an international network
  • Find out what’s hot in writing and literacies research
  • Listen to the podcasts by our writing and literacies scholars
  • Contribute to our twice-yearly newsletters
  • Make new connections on our Twitter Chat #literacies: http://literacieschat.wordpress.com

We look forward to hearing from prospective and current members through our social media outlets as well on Twitter at @writinglit and on Facebook in the AERA Writing & Literacies SIG group.

Have a great academic year.

Kathy A. Mills
Writing & Literacies SIG Chair


AERA 2019 Business Meeting

Join us at AERA 2019 for a presentation from Dr. Julian Sefton-Green, titled "Defining the Limits and Possibilities of Progressive Literacy Education: Lessons from School and Out of School Music-Making in 'The Class.'"

“The Class”, (co-authored with Sonia Livingstone) an ethnography  published in 2016 described the lives of a class of 28 13 to 14-year-olds in London  at home, at school, with their families and with their friends and shows the variety of influences and opportunities that enable different kinds of learning experiences across a range of social settings.

In this presentation I reflect on what's involved in understanding learning from such a lifewide/lifelong perspective and describe 4 cases of young people's formal and informal music education from the middle class graded piano examinations through to self-taught use of Youtube videos. I examine these cases of music learning as "literacy events" showing how they can be understood in terms of tensions between both vernacular and high culture as well as progressive and traditional modes of teaching. The challenges of progressive literacy education – validating a whole range of out-of-school multi-literate social practices are brought into sharp relief through the stories of very different kinds of meaning making in music.


Julian Sefton-Green is Professor of New Media Education at Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia. He has worked as an independent scholar and has held positions at the Department of Media & Communication, London School of Economics & Political Science and at the University of Oslo working on projects exploring learning and learner identity across formal and informal domains. He has been an Honorary Professor of Education at the University of Nottingham, UK and the Institute of Education, Hong Kong and he is now a Visiting Professor at The Playful Learning Centre, University of Helsinki, Finland.

 He has been the Head of Media Arts and Education at WAC Performing Arts and Media College - a centre for informal training and education - where he directed a range of digital media activities for young people and co-ordinated training for media artists and teachers. Prior to that he worked as Media Studies teacher in an inner city comprehensive London; and in higher education teaching undergraduate and postgraduate courses, leading teacher training degrees in media education.

 He has researched and written widely on many aspects of media education, new technologies, creativity, digital cultures and informal learning and has authored, co-authored or edited 15 books. Recent volumes include “The Class: living and learning in the digital age” (New York University Press, 2016), “Learning Identities, Education and Community: young lives in the cosmopolitan city” (Cambridge University Press 2016) and “Learning beyond the School: international perspectives on the schooled society”  (Routledge, 2018). He has directed research projects for the Arts Council of England, the British Film Institute, the London Development Agency, Creative Partnerships and Nominet Trust and has spoken at over 50 conferences in  20 countries <www.julianseftongreen.net>

SIG Purpose
To promote research in writing and literacy at all age levels and across cultural and social (including institutional) contexts; to provide a forum for idea exchange related to writing and literacy research, theory, and practice across disciplines.
Who We Are

We have over 600 members.  Consider joining us!

AERA Writing and Literacies SIG Executive Committee

Chair: Kathy Mills (Kathy.Mills@acu.edu.au), 
Learning Sciences Institute Australia 

Program Chair: Amy Stornaiuolo (amystorn@gse.upenn.edu),
University of Pennsylvania

Secretary/Treasurer: Anna Smith (amsmi11@ilstu.edu), 
Illinois State University

Communication Chair: Jayne C. Lammers (jlammers@warner.rochester.edu),
University of Rochester
Past Chair: Jessica Zacher Pandya, California State University

AERA Writing and Literacies SIG Service

New Media Scholarship Coordinators: Betina Hsieh , California State University - Long Beach, and Michael T. O’Connor, Providence College, Cherise Martinez-McBride, University of California - Berkeley     
Historian/Documentarian: Phil Nichols, Baylor University
Awards Committee Chair: Donna Alvermann, University of Georgia
Awards Committee: Rebecca Woodard, University of Illinois - Chicago, Jon Wargo, Boston College, and Nadia Behizadeh, Georgia State University
Writing and Literacies On Air Podcast Series
AERA 2019 Submissions Details



This is a reminder that the AERA proposal system is now open and closes on July 23, 11:59pm (Pacific Time). Please see the AERA Call for Proposals for more details

We are interested to see submissions that reflect the conference theme focused on multimodality:  Leveraging Education Research in a “Post-Truth” Era: Multimodal Narratives to Democratize Evidence.

You can read more about the conference theme here

Other Writing and Literacies SIG themes to consider that have been explored in the past include, but are not limited to:

•         Global and international literacies research

•         Multiplayer online gaming, video games, and literacy learning

•         Critical media literacies

•         Content-area and disciplinary literacies

•         Sensory literacies and embodiment

•         Rural and urban literacies

•         Religious, faith-based, or spiritual literacies

•         Media and materials of literacy practices - old and new

•         Ecological literacies

•         Spatiality, networks or rhizomes in literacy practices

•         Digital composition

•         Pedagogies for teaching grammar for different social purposes

•         Multilingual literacies across contexts

•         Social media and literacy practices

•         Intersectionality of race, gender, and other identities in literacy practices 
•         Social and economic marginalization and literacy practice

•         Early childhood, primary, adolescent, and adult literacy practices

•         Literacy practices in homes and communities

•         Play, toys and early literacies

•         Literacy pedagogy, curriculum and assessment

•         Power, policy and literacy

•         Pre-service teachers, teachers and literacy pedagogies

•         Higher education, digital technologies and discourses

•         Writing development (early childhood, childhood, adolescent, adult)

•         Methodologies for studying multi-sited literacies phenomena

Due to the allocated number of time slots, individual papers will be grouped with similar research. Also consider submitting a poster
presentation. Please remove any author identification material from the document when submitting your proposal for peer review.

You can find the details about session types and formats of submissions on the official AERA website.

AERA 2018

We thank all who joined us in New York City, April 13-17, 2018 for the AERA Annual Meeting, particularly for the Annual SIG Business Meeting where we enjoyed the chance to mix and mingle with mentors, mentees, and other SIG members, our presentation of awards, and a special presentation by Cyphers for Justice!

CFJ We Matter Group Pic CROPPEDCyphers for Justice (CFJ) is a youth and educator development program housed within the Institute for Urban and Minority Education (IUME) at Columbia University, College Now at Queens College, and Rikers Island. CFJ apprentices NYC city High School youth, incarcerated youth, and NYC teachers as critical researchers through the use of hip hop, spoken word, digital literacy, and critical social research methods. Founded within the traditions of Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR) and hip hop culture, CFJ youth work alongside Columbia University and Queens College students (undergraduate and graduate), professors, and community-based teaching artists, to conduct research and present their findings on relevant social issues.

Awards History

Steve Cahir Early Career Award for Research on Writing

Past winners:

Lindy L. Johnson (2017)
Amy Stornaiuolo (2015)
Amanda Kibler (2013)
JuliAnna Avila (2011)
Anne Whitney (2008)
Mari Haneda (2001)
David Wallace (1993)
Peter Smagorinsky (1991)
Melanie Sperling (1990)

Steve Witte Lifetime Achievement Award

Past winners:

George Newell (2018)
Jennifer Rowsell (2016)
Peter Smagorinsky (2014)
Linda Flower (2007)

Outstanding Graduate Student Paper Award

Past winners:

Cassie Brownell (2018)
Ksenia Korobkova & Natalia Smirnov (2017)

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