The Writing Center offers free tutorial assistance, information, and resources for every stage of the writing process.
What to Bring to an Appointment
Be sure to bring all your work related to the paper you are writing. This means the assignment sheet or syllabus description, notes on the paper or related discussion and readings, and any brainstorming or drafts you have done. New this year: students are allowed to work from lap tops during their appointment.
New Walk-In Hours:
The Writing Center offers walk-in hours for all students from 7:00PM—9:00PM, Sunday through Thursday. Students will be tutored on a first-come, first-served basis. The usual rules about arriving at the beginning of the hour do not apply to walk-ins.
Make the Most of Your Writing Center Time
A lot happens in a Writing Center session. But a lot more can result from using what you learn with us on your own. Just a few simple steps can help you reach your writing goals. Writing Programs Writing Fellow, Irene, shares her tips with you:
Before the appointment…
Fortune favors those who prepare. Before coming to the Writing Center, a few minutes of planning can make a large difference in the success of your session. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your session:
- Schedule your appointment a few days before your paper is due. Write down the date of your appointment in your planner and donʼt be late! You might have an epiphany about your thesis statement in those five minutes.
- Think about the goals you have for the session. In fact, write them down. Has your professor given you any suggestions? Have you worked on specific aspects of your writing before? Which parts of this paper have you struggled with? What do you hope to accomplish with this paper? All this information can help your tutor get a better idea of what your goals are.
- Bring a copy of your assignment and any drafts, notes, or napkins that you may have scribbled on. Anything related to your paper and to your writing process will be interesting reading material for the session.
- Remember to clarify any questions regarding the assignment with your professor. Weʼre only tutors and have not mastered the art of mind reading…yet.
- If you feel like you need more than one session to fulfil your writing needs, then go ahead and schedule more than one appointment. We even offer standing appointments, so you can visit us every week and work on that long paper or thesis.
During the appointment…
- Know what Writing Center tutors can and canʼt do. Here are the four most erroneous misconceptions about Writing Center tutors:
[-]Tutors are secretly proofreading robots disguised in human form. Wrong. Tutors can help fix recurring errors in your paper, but we care just as much about your overall progress as a writer. Think of your writing as Rome: you canʼt build it in a day, but many roads lead to it.
[-]Tutors are the modern version of 19th century grammarians. Wrong. Tutors donʼt expect you to memorize every obscure grammar rule. Weʼll teach you to make use of those rules in order to discover deeper and more interesting aspects of the writing process.
[-]Tutors are the Simon Cowell of writing. Wrong. We are all still learning about writing, so weʼre not here to criticize or throw rotten tomatoes at you. Could you imagine the mess? Your tutorʼs comments will always be constructive and geared towards help you become a better writer in all possible ways.
[-]Tutors are like Pez dispensers for ideas. Actually, thatʼs partly true. Nevertheless, while weʼre always coming up with new ways to think about writing, most of the ideas during the session will come from you. Be prepared to work hard, and rest assured that your tutor will do the same.
- Ask questions. We know you have them.
- Write down anything and everything you think will be useful to remember later. Appointments tend to go by in a flash, so youʼll appreciate even the shortest of key phrases to remember what just happened.
After the appointment…
- After spending forty-five minutes talking about Oxford commas, three-part thesis statements, and backwards outlining, we understand if your first instinct is to run for coffee or tea at Java City. While you sip your caffeinated beverage of choice, though, read through any notes you and your tutor took during the session. Write in a few comments to remind you of key ideas while theyʼre still fresh in your mind.
- If the tutor recommended any outside resources to help address issues in your writing, take some time to check them out. Some of these resources can help you finish revising your paper and provide tools for when you start writing the next one.
- In between papers, spend a few minutes thinking about aspects of your writing that you would like to work on in the near future. Keep a log of these and bring them to the Writing Center the next time you visit.