Drs. Sulentic Dowell and DiCarlo Publish New Book

March 15, 2022

BATON ROUGE, LAMargaret-Mary Sulentic Dowell, PhD and Cynthia F. DiCarlo, PhD have recently published Productivity and Publishing: Writing Processes for New Scholars and Researchers. In this practical book, Sulentic Dowell and DiCarlo take the challenges and confusion out of academic writing and journal publishing by empowering readers to find the writing process that works for them. This text is appropriate for incoming doctoral students and new faculty, as well as for doctoral students taking dissertation hours.

For Sulentic Dowell and DiCarlo, the idea for the book came from conversations with colleagues and doctoral students as well as several presentations at academic conferences such as the American Educational Research Association, the University of New Mexico’s International Mentoring Institute, and the Literacy Research Association where they noted their presentation on ideas for supporting doctoral students generated a great deal of interest – especially from doctoral candidates. At the same time, Sulentic Dowell and DiCarlo noted an intentional, strategic lack of support for writing in their home unit of the School of Education. They commented, “our faculty colleagues were doing a fine job of preparing individual graduate students to understand the demands of academic, scholarly writing, but something was missing. An actual text that addressed the entire process was lacking.”

That gap prompted Sulentic Dowell to first create a specific course that addresses the demands of scholarly writing and to demystify the academic writing process. She created a special topics course, taught it several times, then completed the LSU process to vet that course and create a recognized course, EDCI 7129, Writing Seminar: From Idea to Manuscript which she teaches each fall as an intensive writing seminar on 5 Saturdays on the LSU campus (opposite home games). That course, EDCI 7129, which is also a required course for the Writing Pedagogy Minor, was the genesis for this book.

The School of Education duo then teamed up with a former LSU graduate, Leah Katherine Saal, PhD from Loyola-Maryland, and one of Sulentic Dowell’s long-time research partners, Tynisha Willingham, PhD, Interim Provost at Mary Baldwin University in Virginia. Sulentic Dowell and DiCarlo also reached out to retired colleague, Renee Casbergue, PhD to write a specific chapter on submission from her perspective as a journal editor, and they also invited LSU librarians, Andrea Hebert (Human Sciences & Education Librarian) and David Dunaway (Director of Open Scholarship & Affordable Learning) to craft a chapter on metrics. SAGE liked their idea so much they sent an acquisitions editor to meet with the LSU team, and the rest, as they say, is history.

What does the book include?

  • Covers both writing and creating a research trajectory for productive and efficient academic writing agendas and academic careers
  • Writing activities help readers apply their knowledge and provide rubrics, tools, and templates for real-life activities like structuring a journal article and responding to reviewers
  • Never face a blank page with trepidation again with the Quick Write features, which help readers get started writing right away
  • Paragraph-level definitions of Key Terms show readers the nuance and variation in what writing terms can mean in different contexts
  • Learning Objectives give readers concrete and manageable goals for completing each chapter
  • Critical Thinking Questions are focused on helping the reader determine what will work best for them and for their writing process
  • Get an editor's perspective from Renée Casbergue on writing and submitting to journals to increase your chances of acceptance
  • Develop your understanding of scholarly metrics to increase your h-index and impact factor

Topics cover the writing and publishing process from start to finish, addressing common issues for new academics, selecting an appropriate journal, dealing with reviews and leveraging your research into multiple articles and a comprehensive research agenda. Sulentic Dowell and DiCarlo weigh in on crucial topics such as scholarly metrics and exposure. The new publication allows readers to see things through a journal editor’s perspective and begin building an academic career on a solid foundation.

About SOE
The LSU School of Education (SOE) offers graduate and undergraduate programs in Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Leadership and Research, and Counseling, including two completely online master’s programs. SOE offers a range of professional and academic degree programs that focus on preparing students for careers in education, research, policy formation and implementation, as well as program oversight. The School’s mission is to prepare P-12 educational professionals to be leaders, practitioners, and scholars knowledgeable in contemporary educational issues. SOE is part of the College of Human Sciences & Education.  Learn more about the School of Education.

About CHSE
The College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE) is a nationally accredited division of Louisiana State University. The college is comprised of the School of Education, the School of Kinesiology, the School of Leadership & Human Resource Development, the School of Library & Information Science, the School of Social Work, and the University Laboratory School. These combined schools offer 8 undergraduate degree programs, 18 graduate programs, and 7 online graduate degree and/or certificate programs, enrolling more than 1,900 undergraduate and 1,120 graduate students. The College is committed to achieving the highest standards in teaching, research, and service and is committed to improving quality of life across the lifespan. Learn more about the College of Human Sciences & Education.