March 2021
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Difference and Disability Matters
is soliciting articles on theory, research, and pedagogy on supporting language learners with disabilities and differences in ESL and EFL settings.

Difference and Disability Matters welcomes articles that focus on theory and practical strategies for supporting language learners with disabilities as well as research on characteristics of language learners with disabilities. Instructional materials, practices, assessment, and teacher education relating to supporting language learners with disabilities and other related areas are encouraged. The Supporting Students with Disabilities Interest Section (SSDIS) supports inclusivity and is open to submissions related to any educational setting, especially underrepresented contexts, such as international contexts, higher education, and intensive and alternative learning settings as well as more traditional K–12 general and special education contexts. Because this newsletter is delivered electronically, hyperlinks to references and resources are recommended.

Please review previous issues to see what unique contribution you can share.

We strive to be an inclusive outlet and as such welcome nonnative English speaker contributions as well as submissions in a variety of media in addition to writing.

Submission Guidelines

  • Submissions should begin with a brief two- to three-sentence abstract “teaser” for the newsletter homepage.
  • Submissions should conclude with a one- to two-sentence bio about the author(s).
  • Length can vary depending on the type of submission. Articles should be no more than 1,750 words (including abstract, tables, and bios), but other types of submissions will be shorter.
  • For citations (max of 5), please use the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, Seventh Edition (APA).
  • Use Times New Roman, 12 pt font.
  • Use a space between paragraphs instead of indenting.
  • Clearly distinguish the different level headings and use bold:
    • THE TITLE (should be in all caps)
    • This Is a Level 1 Head (title case, bold)
    • This Is a Level 2 Head (title case, italics)
    • This is a level 3 head. (sentence case, italics)
  • Include a two- to three-sentence author biography at the end of the article.
  • Include a byline: Author’s name with hyperlinked email, affiliation, city, country
    • Example: Michelle Kim, TESOL International Association, Alexandria, Virginia, USA

Please submit questions and submissions to Difference and Disability Matters Co-editors: TESOL.SSDIS.Newsletter@gmail.com

Submission Procedures

  • Submit articles in Microsoft Word (as a .doc or .docx file) as an email attachment in a message to the editors.
  • Include photos, figures, and tables as separate files.
  • Please include a professional picture of yourself as a separate .jpg file and indicate in the email body that you give permission to publish your photo. Headshot dimensions: 120pixels (width) x 160pixels (height)


Additional Information Regarding Submissions Related to Specific Topics

Book/Media Reviews

Difference and Disability Matters welcomes reviews of teacher resource books related to language teaching and language learners with disabilities. Interested reviewers may choose a recently published book in the field and contact the editor for approval and review copies. Reviews will be considered for publication based on the quality of the reviewer’s evaluation and description of the book as well as the book’s relevance and importance to the field. In addition, we welcome reviews of free or low-cost educational technology to support language learners and learners with disabilities.

TESOL Book review Guidelines: Book reviews should be commentary/critical, not merely summary, and must include elements such as assessment of the writing, the content, the research/evidence provided, the book’s usefulness, etc. The summary portion should, really, make up less than half of the text. Here’s a great article on academic book reviews from USC: “Writing Academic Book Reviews.” Here’s a good basic academic book review outline from the UNC Writing Center:

  • First, a review gives the reader a concise summary of the content. This includes a relevant description of the topic as well as its overall perspective, argument, or purpose.
  • Second, and more importantly, a review offers a critical assessment of the content. This involves your reactions to the work under review: what strikes you as noteworthy, whether or not it was effective or persuasive, and how it enhanced your understanding of the issues at hand.
  • Finally, in addition to analyzing the work, a review often suggests whether or not the audience would appreciate it.


Media & Technology Review Guidelines
: Media, digital tools, and technology reviews should be commentary/ critical and follow the outline below.

  • Name of the tool and URL
  • Cost - only free and low-cost media, digital tools, and technology will be considered. Also, identify if there are free and paid versions and what is available in each.
  • How this tool supports language learners and students with disabilities
  • Benefits of using this tool
  • Challenges and/ or drawbacks to using this tool
  • Other additional comments.
  • Additional Guidelines:
  • be in APA format,
  • be 600–900 words in length, and
  • include a 50-word (max 500 character) abstract and a two- to three-sentence author biography.


Action Research Projects

Difference and Disability Matters welcomes reports on classroom-based action research projects, including a discussion of the following:

  • statement of the problem
  • research design
  • proposed solutions
  • analysis of results
  • final reflections and relevant classroom materials related to the research
  • Review submission guidelines (above) for format and length
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WEBINAR RECORDING
Digital Tools to Support English Learners with Disabilities in Writing presented by Caroline Torres as a part of a panel discussion hosted by the Second Language Writing Interest Section: SLW Webinar: Diversity in L2 Writing: Creating Inclusive Pedagogical and Administrative Approaches