The Learning Center Newsletter 

Monthly publication - April 2000 Issue

Sponsored by AccuTrack



Technology Institute.


The CRLA Monograph.


Internet Resource of the Month.


Person of the Month.


Publication of the Month.




Windows Tips.


On the Lighter Side.




Call for submissions.




About the Authors.


Last Issue.


Subscription Info.

Technology Institute for Developmental Educators

Once again this summer, Southwest Texas State University (SWT) in partnership with CRLA and NADE will be offering the Second Annual Technology Institute for Developmental Educators, better known as SWT-TIDE. 

Modeled after the highly successful Winter Institutes by Frank Christ, this is 5 days of mentoring and hands-on practice to hone your technology skills. Designed by and for developmental educators, you will have an opportunity to learn new technology skills, complete technology projects, and enjoy a technology vacation. 

For more information, including a list of mini-courses, mentors, and on-line registration visit this web site:

Or e-mail Dave Caverly at for an information packet. Registration is limited to 30, so reserve your place soon!

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The CRLA Monograph

Last month we mentioned The CRLA Monograph, Starting Up A Learning Assistance Center: Conversations with CRLA Members Who  Have Been There and Done That.  The monograph is edited by Frank Christ (University of Arizona), Karen Smith (Rutgers University), and Rick Sheets (Paradise Valley College).  Some readers wanted to know how they can get a copy.  Well the monograph is available now from H & H Publishing Company, Inc. 1231 Kapp Drive, Clearwater, FL 33765.  Telephone: 800-366-4079 or email or

Monograph contributors include Martha Maxwell, Gene Kerstiens, Gwyn Enright, Karen Smith, Elaine Burns, Frank Torres, Sylvia Mioduski, Michael O'Hear, David Gerkin, Reed Mencke, Georgine Materniak, and Frank Christ. 

You can see the monograph's table of contents and order a copy on-line by visiting the following site:

 [Frank Christ, University of Arizona]

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Internet Resource of the Month

NWCA Homepage

The National Writing Centers Association (NWCA) home page has a wealth of information for writing centers professionals.  Sections include articles and links to Writing Center resources, a large list of Writing Centers on-line, a list of discussion groups, resources for writers, electronic and print journals, tutor stories, and even a section on starting a Writing Center.

The site is maintained by Bruce Pegg, director of The Colgate University Writing Center.  If you'd like to contribute to any of these pages, or if you have any suggestions for links or items to include, please contact Bruce Pegg at or write to: 

The Writing Center
212 Alumni Hall
Colgate University
Hamilton, NY 13346

(315) 228-7376
FAX: (315) 228-7045  

You can browse the NWCA Home page at:

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Person of the Month

Dr. Marie-Elaine Burns, Skyline College

Dr. Marie-Elaine Burns is the Director of The Learning Center (TLC), the Student Support Services - TRIO Program, and the Jump Start Program at Skyline College in San Bruno, California.

Marie-Elaine earned her doctorate in Institutional Management from Pepperdine University in 1991. Her doctoral dissertation, "A Study to Formulate a Learning Assistance Model for the California Community College", established a model which included key components and characteristics for "the ideal" learning assistance program. "The Learning Assistance Program Model" is highlighted in the 1997 edition of Martha Maxwell's Improving Student Learning Skills.  Her article, "Management Strategies to Assist Students in Improving Learning Skills" has been published in the Journal of Developmental Education, The Hot Topics Series: Teaching Effective Learning Strategies from Phi Delta Kappa and in From Access to Success: A Book of Readings on College Developmental Education and Learning Assistance Programs edited by Martha Maxwell.

Dr. Burns has been the Director of Skyline College Learning Center since 1993. She has also been the Director of the Learning Skills Center at Hartnell College in Salinas, California, the Associate Director of the Learning Assistance Support System at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB), and the Tutorial Coordinator at the University of Southern California (USC) and at San Francisco State University.

Elaine directed four of the five Institutes for Learning Assistance Professionals at California State University, Long Beach.  In addition, she has taught as an adjunct instructor for the Kellogg Institute at Appalachian State University and served as a mentor for the Annual Winter Institute for Learning Assistance Professionals in Tucson, Arizona. 

In addition to her job responsibilities, Elaine is involved in the following activities: 

bullet Mentee, Association of California Community College Administrators (ACCCA);
bullet Member, Board of Directors, Western Association of Educational Opportunity Personnel (WESTOP); 
bullet Chairperson, Communications Committee, WESTOP;
bullet Member, Advisory Board, San Francisco Police Department's Operation Dream Project;
bullet Learning Skills Consultant to the Continental of Omega Boys and Girls' Club and the Willie B. Adkins Foundation in Vallejo, California;
bullet Member, College Reading and Learning Association (CRLA); 
bullet Member and past-president of the Association of California College Tutorial and Learning Assistance (ACCTLA); 
bulletMember, Phi Delta Kappa.  

Our thanks to Dr. Burns for her continued contributions and for being our Person of the Month.

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Publication of the Month 


The Journal of College Reading and Learning (JCRL) is published semi-annually by the College Reading and Learning Association.  The journal is a forum for current theory, research, practice, and policy related to post-secondary reading improvement and learning assistance. Preferred articles include linking theory, research, or policy to practice.

Research articles are welcomed. Manuscripts are particularly invited on the following topics: college reading, learning strategies and study skills, tutoring, critical thinking,
computers, program administration, teaching methods, writing, and program evaluation.

JCRL has about 1,200 subscribers.  The next issue comes out in May.  For more information contact the editor David Lemire by email or visit the CRLA site at:

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NTA Conference: Frontiers in Tutoring 

National Tutoring Association (NTA)

April 9-12, 2000  

San Antonio, Texas

The NTA conference provides the latest in tutor information, training, and the opportunity to network with other tutors and administrators.  This year’s keynote speaker is Dr. Al Gronowsky.  For more information contact the Program Chair and Vice-President of NTA, Dr. Jennifer Hurd at (501) 279-4101 or e-mail: 

or visit the NTA web site at:


CWC 2000 Conference
May 25-28, 2000
Fort Worth, Texas

The Computers and Writing Conference (CWC) is an annual, national conference focusing on the use of computer technology to facilitate the teaching and learning of writing specifically, but language arts in a broader sense.  For more information visit the conference site at:


NCLCA Fifteenth Annual Conference 
October 4-6, 2000 
Minneapolis, Minnesota

The National College Learning Center Association (NCLCA), founded in 1985, is a
professional organization dedicated to promoting excellence among learning personnel. The association has membership throughout the United States and Canada, and welcomes anyone interested in assisting college and university students along the road to academic success. 

The Featured Speakers of this year's conference, "Guiding Success:  Learning Center Strategies for a New Age", are Martha Casazza & Sharon Silverman. 

For more information browse this web site:


NWCA 5th National Conference 
November 2-4, 2000 
Baltimore, MD 

The National Writing Centers Association (NWCA) conference’s goal is to provide a setting where all those who work in writing centers can exchange ideas and information.  For more information visit the conference web site at:


CRLA 33rd Annual Conference 
November 8-11, 20000
Reno, Nevada 

The College Reading and Learning Association (CRLA) conference, "Research, Practice, Reflection for a new generation" key note speaker is Gary Soto.  Luncheon Speaker-Robert Sherfield.

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Windows Tips of the Month


The Explorer is a handy tool for managing the files on your computer.  You can use the Explorer to launch applications, view documents, and to copy, delete, and rename files and folders. The following tips will make your use of the Explorer more powerful.

Starting Explorer Quickly

bulletSlow way: Start button - Programs - Windows Explorer
bulletQuicker way: RIGHT click on the Start button then select "Explore" from the pop-up window.
bulletQuickest way: Use your keyboard shortcut: Windows key and "E".


Showing File Details

The Explorer default view is not very exploring!  To have the maximum amount of info, click on "View" in the explorer menu bar then select "Details".  In this view the Explorer shows the file's name, size, type, and last modification date.  You can even sort the files by any of these items.  For example, to sort the files alphabetically by name, click on the "Name" bar.  To reveres the sorting, click on the "Name" bar again,.  To see the most recent files first, click on "Modified", and so on.


Resizing Columns

When in the Detailed view, the column you are reading may not be wide enough to show the whole text.  One way to fix that is to resize the column to fit its widest entry by clicking on the vertical separator line in the header and dragging it to the appropriate width, but wait, there is an easier way.  Instead of dragging the line, simply double click on it, and the width of the column will be adjusted automatically! Again, all you need is to hold the mouse pointer over the vertical separator line at the right edge of the column's title, and when it changes to a double-pointed arrow, double-click. 

There is even an easier way.  You can resize every column to fit its widest entry in one swoop.  First set the focus on the right pane of the Explorer window by clicking on any item or blank area inside the right pane.  Now  hold down the Ctrl key as you press the plus sign (+) on your numeric keypad.  The Explorer will do all the resizing for you! 


Viewing full path 

You can have the Explorer show the full path of the highlighted file or folder in the Explorer's Window title bar.  From the Explorer window, select View from the menu bar, then "Options" or "Folder Options".  You will see an options box come up.  Click the View tab, select "Display The Full MS-DOS Path In The Title Bar", and click OK.

There is another way to see the full path.  From the "View" menu, select "Tool bars", then click on "Address Bar".  This address bar shows the full path of the selected folder.


Expanding Branches

Some folders in the left pane of the Explorer window  have a plus "+" sign next to them.  This signifies that these folders have other folders in them.  To view these "child folders", you can click on the plus sign with your mouse.  This is called expanding a branch.  But what if you want to expand all the branches at the same time?  Simply select the parent folder, then press the asterisk key on your numeric keypad.  The Explorer will expand all the branches automatically.

When you're finished, you can put all those branches back where they belong.  Click the minus sign (-) next to the parent branch, then press F5. 


Viewing Parent Folder

If you're viewing a folder's contents and want to view the contents of it's parent folder (the one that contains the folder you're viewing), you can use your mouse to click up a level.  But there is an easier way, simply use the "Back arrow" key on your keyboard.  You will move up through the branches, and the Explorer will collapse the branch you are leaving.  To move down, you guessed it, simply use the forward arrow key, and the Explorer will expand the branches.  If you want to move up without collapsing the branches, simply use the "Back Space" key.


File Operations

Now that you know how to navigate your way well in the Explorer Window, let's see some of the things you can do with it.  

To create new folders, select "File" on the Explorer menu bar then "New", and click on "Folder".  You can now type a new name for this folder.

To copy files to the new folder, simply navigate to the files, highlight them, then press "Ctrl" and "C" on your keyboard, or select "Edit"- "Copy" from the Explorer menu bar.  Now navigate back to the new folder and press "Ctrl"-"V" on the keyboard or "Edit"-"Paste" from the menu bar to paste the selected files.

To delete a file or a folder, simply highlight it and press the "Delete" key on your keyboard.

To view the contents of a file, simply double click on it.  Windows will launch the "associated" application automatically and load the selected file in it.


Searching for files

In the March issue of The Learning Center Newsletter, we explained in details how to use the Explorer Find utility to search for files.  See that issue for details.

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On the Lighter Side

A linguistics professor was lecturing to her class one day. "In
English," she said, "A double negative forms a positive. In some languages, though, such as Russian, a double negative is still a negative. However, there is no language wherein a double positive can form a negative."

A voice from the back of the room piped up, "Yeah, right."

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"The highest reward for a person's toil is not what they get for it, but what they become by it."
John Ruskin



"In the long run you hit only what you aim at. Therefore, though you should fail immediately, you had better aim at something high." 
Henry David Thoreau 


"Success is 99 percent failure"
Sochiro Honda


"The secret of getting ahead is getting started.  The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one."
Mark Twain

Watch your thoughts; they become words.
Watch your words; they become actions.
Watch your actions; they become habits.
Watch your habits; they become character.
Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.
Frank Outlaw
If you think you are beaten, you are.
If you think you dare not, you don't.
If you like to win but think you can't,
Its almost certain that you won't.
Life's battles don't always go
To the stronger woman or man,
But sooner or later, those who win
Are those who think they can.

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Call for Submissions

 Get involved with The Learning Center Newsletter by:


Nominating your favorite learning center professional for the Person of the Month corner.


Submitting articles and announcements.


Informing us about conferences and other happenings.


Reviewing publications.


Sharing resource information with your peers (web sites, lists, etc.)

Submitting your article will make you more famous and will help your colleagues worldwide!  E-mail your submissions to:

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We certainly hope you find this newsletter useful and entertaining.  If you have any comments, send us e-mail by clicking here.

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About the Authors

This newsletter is produced by Mon Nasser from Engineerica Systems, Inc.  My thanks to all those who contributed to this issue: Frank Christ and our Person of the Month,  Dr. Marie-Elaine Burns.

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Last Month Issue

The March issue of the Learning Center Newsletter featured:


WCENTER, a listserve for Writing Centers Professionals


March Person of the Month.


The Learning Assistance Review, a publication of NCLCA


Using the Windows Find Utility.


Using Windows "Startup" folder. 


Quotes by Mark Twain, Confucius, Ben Franklin and others.

To read the March issue, click here.

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Only those that subscribe to The Learning Center Newsletter receive it.  If you wish to unsubscribe, e-mail to:

Please tell your peers about this newsletter by forwarding its web address to them.

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Email if you have any questions or comments.
Last Modified: January 13, 2004 10:22:39 AM