Learner Development Journal Issue 9: Call for Proposals

Theme: Engaging With and Exploring Autonomy, Creativity, and Well-Being for Learner Development
Call for Stories of Practices and Practice-Related Reviews 
Deadline: February 4th, 2024
Email: LDJ.Issue9@gmail.com
Editors: Stacey Vye, Rob Moreau, Amelia Yarwood, Ivan Lombardi

We are language teachers and practitioner researchers who share a common interest in learner autonomy, creativity, and the well-being of teachers and learners alike. For Issue 9 of the Learner Development Journal (LDJ9), we would like to bring together a group of practitioners who are actively engaged in exploring learner development and who are eager to discuss questions and puzzles related to their practice.


If you are interested in exploring questions like the following, please consider submitting a proposal for LDJ9: 

  • What puzzles do you have about developing the interconnections between learner autonomy, creativity, and well-being? 
  • How might you bring those pieces together in engaging projects and understand them in new ways?
  • What are your experiences as practitioners in such engagements with your learners (and/or with other people that you work with)?
  • How do we/you/our learners break through into new practices, spaces, and ways of creative participation in learning?
  • What challenges and questions come up for you and your learners in these processes of change in learner development? Why?
  • What stories of practice would you and/or your learners like to share and develop to foster autonomy, creativity, and well-being for learner development?

For LDJ9, we would very much like to bring together a group of practitioners (teachers and students/learners) to create an original collection of stories of practices for learner development and of practice-related reviews on interrelationships between autonomy, creativity, and well-being. 

We warmly invite contributions from diverse areas of language education from primary through to tertiary, and/or in other relevant contexts, in Japan and other countries. Prospective contributors should focus on practitioners’ and students’ stories and reflections, both individual and collective, generated in practice and explored through inquiry, reflection, and practitioner research. 

Possible areas of activity and inquiry 

We hope contributors will be interested in exploring areas such as: 

  • Multimodal learner development projects and activities that involve visual arts, music, drama, poetry, photography, video, literature, manga, anime, or other creative arts
  • Community-based projects and activities where teachers and learners engage with local organizations/organisations, communities, and networks, foster creativity together, and develop their sense of well-being 
  • Experiences with mindfulness practices for learner development like guided meditation, reflective journaling, collaborative dialogues, and personal story-sharing
  • Working with digital storytelling tools to create and share stories of autonomy, creativity, and well-being for learner development
  • Learners’ and teachers’ experiences with translanguaging and how they relate to translanguaging for developing well-being in learning communities 
  • Learners’ creative engagement with critical theories (e.g., critical race, gender,  intersectionality, disability theories) within the classroom and different social spaces
  • Innovative and holistic assessment practices that embrace creativity and well-being as areas of focus in helping teachers and learners reflect on and understand their development from new whole-person perspectives.

If there are other areas of activity and inquiry that appeal to you about engaging with and exploring interrelationships between autonomy, creativity, and well-being, then please feel free to contact us by email <LDJ.Issue9@gmail.com> ahead of sending in your proposal. Many thanks!

Developing a community of practices together 

Our aim is to make the collaborative process of LDJ9 supportive and inclusive by creating a stimulating and enjoyable community of practice for practitioner research and story writing. We warmly encourage co-constructed inquiries, co-authorship, and joint participation of students/learners in stories and writing. 

As a contributor to LDJ9, you will be expected to collaborate with other contributors at different points in the development of your practices, explorations, practitioner-research, and writing, for example, engaging in discussions of your practices, sharing writing, responding to each other’s drafts, and taking part in online and/or face-to-face conversations.

Writing with a personalized/personalised reflective quality 

LDJ9 will feature two main types of writing: STORIES OF PRACTICES & PRACTICE-RELATED REVIEWS. Both genres invite contributors to experiment with narrative and reflection in personalised/personalized ways.

  1. With STORIES OF PRACTICES at 4,000-5,000 words, we are looking for around 6-10  contributions, each with a strong personalised/personalized reflective quality. We invite contributors to LDJ9 to: 
  • ground their writing in practice-driven concerns and questions that they have about engaging with and exploring projects for learner autonomy, creativity, and well-being 
  • write their stories in personalized/personalised, reflective ways
  • include different voices
  • relate their stories to arguments and debates in the wider field where appropriate, and 
  • write questioningly to construct their critical understanding and reflection on practices, discourses, and theorisations/theorizations to do with exploring learner autonomy, creativity, and well-being for learner development. 
  • write in your preferred variety of English that supports your creative flow. Your editors will honour/honor your distinct written voice. 

Stores of Practices may include reader responses, artifacts/artefacts, and other multi-vocalic elements to help make your writing interactive and dialogic. We encourage contributors to consider how they might use narrative, critical incidents, dialog/dialogue, interview, and other interactive elements (for example, visual, video, web, multimodal, digital, multimedia) to enhance the personalized/personalised and reflective quality of their stories

  1. For PRACTICE-RELATED REVIEWS, we would like to include reflective commentaries of around 2,500-3,000 words that relate your review of one of the following published books to your own local learner development practices and concerns. Here we hope to get an inspection copy to share with you. You are welcome to focus on specific chapters/parts in a particular book:

Learner Autonomy

Murray, G., & Lamb, T. (2018). Space, place and autonomy in language learning. Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781317220909-1 

Little, D., Dam, L., & Legenhausen, L. (2017). Language learner autonomy: Theory, practice and research. Multilingual Matters. https://doi.org/10.21832/9781783098606


Jones, R. H., & Richards, J. C. (Eds.) (2016). Creativity and language teaching: Perspectives from research and practice. Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315730936

Resnick, L. (2017). Lifelong kindergarten: Cultivating creativity through projects, passion, peers, and play. MIT Press. https://doi.org/10.7551/mitpress/11017.001.0001


Lemon, N. (Ed.). (2022). Creative expression and wellbeing in higher education: Making and  movement as mindful moments of self-care. Taylor & Francis. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781003207863

Project-Based Learning

Gras-Velázquez, A. (Ed.) (2019). Project-based learning in second language acquisition. Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429457432

Staged development of research and writing 

Rather than working exclusively towards a full draft from the outset, we feel it is more productive and enriching to build on, re-work, and extend your stories of practices and practice-related reviews in stages through sharing incomplete drafts, discussing them, and getting peer responses from other contributors. This will be in addition to receiving later feedback from LDJ Review Network members, and the LDJ9 editors

Proposed stages of development:

  1. NOTIFICATION OF ACCEPTANCE: Sunday, February 18th, 2024
  2. FIRST PIECES OF WRITING: Stories of practices: 1,200-1,500 words; Practice-related reviews: 600-1,000 words; peer responses (April/May 2024)
  3. SECOND PIECES OF WRITING (building on, re-working, and extending the first piece): Stories of practices: 2,500-3,000 words; practice-related reviews: 1,200-1,800 words; peer responses. Choice of blind peer or open review by LDJ Review Network members         (September/October 2024, with review in November/December 2024)
  4. THIRD PIECES OF WRITING (building on, re-working, and extending the second piece): Stories of practices: Full drafts of 4,000 to 5,000 words; practice-related reviews: Full drafts of 2,500-3,000 words (February/March 2025)
  5. FINALIZATION/FINALISATION OF ALL TEXTS: Includes abstracts and keywords (English and Japanese or another language), statement of the review process (open or blind peer review – see below), and author bios (English and Japanese or another language) (June, July, August 2025)
  6. PUBLICATION: The digital journal will be made available on the Learner Development Journal website, with copies sent to contributors (October/November 2025)

Choice of open or blind peer review

In keeping with established LDJ practices, contributors have a choice between blind peer review and open peer review by members of the Review Network and guest reviewers invited for LDJ9. For more details, see https://ldjournal.ld-sig.org/peer-review-process/.

Initial inquiries and proposals (Deadline Sunday, February 4th, 2024) 

1. If you wish to check anything with us ahead of sending in your proposal, please email the editors at: <LDJ.Issue9@gmail.com>, and we will get back to you as soon as we can. 
2. The deadline for all proposals is Sunday, February 4th, 2024
3. For your proposal, please include the following information in a Word .docx file:

Institutional affiliation(s) and country: 
E-mail address(es): 
Member of JALT Learner Development SIG? Yes/No 

Proposal guideline: Start with a brief story about yourself and your working (or studying) context(s), and your interest in engaging projects with learner autonomy, creativity, and well-being for learner development through inclusive practitioner research. Indicate which type of writing you plan to do:

       For STORIES OF PRACTICES, write around 500-600 words to introduce your ideas and proposed focus. Include also your experiences and/or concerns about writing in a personalised/personalized reflective way. 

       For PRACTICE-RELATED REVIEWS, write about 300 words, identifying the book you are interested in reviewing and why, and focusing on practices and questions that you plan to relate your review to. 

4. Send your completed proposal as a Word .docx attachment to the editors at <LDJ.Issue9@gmail.com> using the tag line [NAME/S]_LDJ9_Contribution


Contacting us

If you have any questions or concerns along the way, please feel free to email us at <LDJ.Issue9@gmail.com>, and we will get back to you as soon as we can. The Call for Proposals will be officially released in early December, 2023, on different email discussion lists, Facebook, and other social media platforms, as well as on the LDJ website: https://ldjournal.ld-sig.org/

Looking forward to hearing from you —

Best regards

Stacey Vye, Saitama University, Saitama, Japan
Rob Moreau, Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan
Amelia Yarwood, Research Institute for Learner Autonomy Education (RILAE), Chiba, Japan
Ivan Lombardi, University of Fukui, Fukui, Japan