A New Name and Look for Liberal Studies Journal

A New Name and Look for Liberal Studies Journal


“Extreme makeover” is a popular theme at present, and the national journal of the Association for Graduate Liberal Studies Programs (AGLSP) is no exception to the trend. In the next issue of the journal, which will publish this fall, a new name and design will debut, thus marking a new personality for a publication distributed since 1995.

The idea of changing the journal’s name and design first appeared in the proposal that University of Oklahoma Outreach, College of Liberal Studies, submitted to the AGLSP board, which won Outreach publishing responsibilities of the journal. The first OU-produced issue of the journal was in fall 2005, which was published under the original name,The Journal of Graduate Liberal Studies, and design. Now, an image overhaul is underway.

After reviewing more than 50 suggested names for the journal, members of the AGLSP board selected Confluence to represent the journal’s collection of nonfiction, fiction and poetry from students, faculty and alumni of graduate liberal studies programs. The upcoming fall issue will reflect the name change, as well as feature a new interior and exterior design by Hadley Jerman, graphic designer in Outreach marketing.

“With a new name comes renewed identity, which will help excite people about the journal and its potential,” said Jerry Jerman, managing editor of the journal and director of development at Outreach.

The fall Confluence has contributing writers from across the nation, including University of Delaware, North Carolina State University, Indiana University at South Bend and Reed College. Works will include scholarly articles about John Milton, Jack Kerouac, Judaism and film noir. In addition, the issue features “War Poetry,” a presentation entitled “Innovation Where Least Expected: The Emergence of a New Paradigm,” and other submissions of fiction and nonfiction.

Confluence offers a tremendous opportunity for graduate liberal studies students and faculty both to showcase their scholarship and creative work and to provide models of exemplary writing,” said James Pappas, vice president of Outreach, dean, College of Liberal Studies, and publisher of the journal.

Curriculum inclusion is one of the specific goals for the journal. “We will look for ways to encourage faculty to use this journal in class,” Pappas said. “One obvious way will be with a faculty link on the new Confluence Web site, to be unveiled in the fall. In time, we expect to learn of other ways from faculty and readers of the journal.”

Future plans for Confluence also include featuring guest pieces from noted authors, as well as creating contests to solicit exemplary works by students and faculty. Additionally, Confluence  will be under the direction of a new editor, to be appointed by the AGLSP board, effective spring 2008.

Barry Levis, current journal editor and professor at Rollins College in Winter Park, Fla., will end his term at the close of 2007.

The AGLSP, the governing body of Confluence, is an international organization of more than 125 institutional members that share a common interest in graduate-level liberal education primarily serving adult, part-time students. Founded in 1975, the AGLSP represents a broad selection of American higher education – from small liberal arts colleges to large, research-oriented universities in the public and private sectors.

As treasurer of the association, Pappas hosted the board meeting at Outreach in March. Board members were treated to a private tour of the Fred Jones Jr. Art Museum on OU’s campus, lunch at the Sam Noble Natural History Museum, a visit to the Oklahoma Bombing Memorial and a night in Bricktown. Outreach will also host the next annual AGLSP conference, set for Oct.12-14 in Santa Fe, N.M.

Update: The College of Liberal Studies was renamed the College of Professional and Continuing Studies in 2017. 

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The College of Professional and Continuing Studies is a fully accredited academic unit of the University of Oklahoma, offering 100% online, hybrid and onsite degrees for working adults and non-traditional students.