Saint Louis University

Faculty Writing Fellows Program

The Office of Academic Affairs offers the Faculty Writing Fellows program to address the needs of SLU faculty in journal article, book and grant writing. The faculty writing fellows will offer one-on-one consultations, workshops, and help assist with the formation and coordination of writing groups, among other activities. Please see below for information on the fellows, the services they offer, and how to contact them for consultations.

Upcoming Presentations and Workshops

Look forward to more workshops in the Fall.




Ryan David McCulla is an Associate Professor of Chemistry whose research interests include photochemistry and understanding the role of reactive oxygen species in biology. The application of his background in physical organic chemistry to biological problems makes him reasonably conversant in most of the science and engineering fields. He has authored more than twenty-five articles, and he has been the recipient of nine grants, including an NSF CAREER award.

As a new chemistry faculty in 2007, he quickly realized that being a proficient writer was immensely more important than being proficient in the laboratory. The shift in focus forced him to evaluate his approach to writing. This led him to search out resources and best practices on topics ranging from time-management to how to organize a document to clearly convey the importance of the result or idea. He attributes the gradual change in his grant applications from denials to acceptances and more publications in high impact journals partially to these efforts. As a Faculty Writing Fellow, his aim is to utilize this experience to help faculty craft engaging grant applications and scholarly articles.

Dr. McCulla will help faculty:

  •  Develop and maintain scholarship groups
  •  Conduct peer reviews of journal articles and grant applications
  •  Write peer reviewed journal articles, trade articles, policy briefs, and/or book  chapters (concept development, manuscript, organization, submission)
  •  Write both intramural and extramural grant applications
  •  Identify resources to improve writing skills.

Formats used to help faculty:

  •  Individual feedback/consultation
  •  Available by appointment, except for 1-5 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, and  Friday.
  •  Facilitating the formation of Writing/Scholarship Groups
  •  Workshops

       Contact Professor McCulla at



Dannielle Joy Davis, Ph.D.
Faculty Writing Fellow
and Associate Professor of Higher Education

Dannielle Joy Davis, Ph.D., holds 9 years of experience directing successful faculty writing groups and has coached numerous members of the professoriate towards writing and research productivity. With over 35 sole authored and collaborative refereed publications, as well as 2 co-edited books, she has served as Associate Editor of Learning for Democracy and on the Editorial Boards of other journals. A former Board member for the Text and Academic Authors' Association (TAA), Dr. Davis serves as Chair of SLU's College of Education and Public Service's TAA Chapter.

Dr. Davis will assist faculty with:

• Journal articles
• Book proposals
• Writing structure
• Strategies for boosting writing output
• Eliminating writing barriers (i.e. procrastination and time challenges)
• Forming a Semester Plan
• Identifying journals and tailoring journal submissions
• Creating productive, prolific writing groups
• Forming Collaboration Agreements

Fields: Social Sciences and Humanities

        Contact Professor Davis at


Mark Edward Ruff is an Associate Professor of European History with a particular area of interest expertise in German religious, political and intellectual history. He is the author of more than two dozen articles, the co-editor of two edited volumes and one monograph; he is nearing completion of a second monograph and a third edited volume. Prior to entering graduate school, and following formal training in high school and college, he worked as a journalist for weekly newspapers in Buffalo, New York.

He has expertise in grant-writing; since the start of graduate school, he has been the recipient of fifteen major international and national grants, including most recently year-long research grants from the ACLS, NEH and the Alexander-von-Humboldt Stiftung. He has also put together many successful grant applications for Saint Louis University on the subject of religious mission. He has also helped lead grant-writing workshops for graduate students and junior faculty members in the Department of History. He is particularly interested in helping colleagues negotiate the ever-growing number of administrative and bureaucratic hurdles facing grant applicants at a time of reduced funding.

Dr. Ruff will:

  • Help faculty prepare grant applications
  • Help faculty prepare book prospectuses
  • Help put together and assist in coordinating interdisciplinary writing groups for those preparing monographs for publications

          Contact Professor Ruff at


Ruth Porter Groff (Associate Professor, Political Theory) has published two books (a third is under contract); three edited volumes (one co-edited); and various single-authored articles, chapters and reviews. She also has journal editorial experience. The important thing is that she used to be a tortured writer, and now she's not -- and that she paid very close attention to what made that change.

Dr. Groff can help colleagues in the humanities and social sciences make progress with:

  • Single-authored books
  • Edited volumes
  • Articles or chapters
  • Book proposals
  • Reviews
  • Overcoming writing-related misery generally.

Dr. Groff is available to consult with faculty one-on-one and/or to do workshops. As with individual consultations, workshops can be designed to meet participants' identified needs, and might be focused on:

  • Particular genres (e.g., books, articles, proposals, etc.)
  • Particular skills (e.g., initial framing/planning; editing/revising; navigating existing literatures, etc.)
  • Particular challenges (overcoming blocks; writing like you mean it; not feeling like a fraud)

         Contact Professor Groff at


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