- What does the Writing Center do?
The Writing Center will help you at any stage of the writing process.
- Who can use the Writing Center?
Any CSP student (TRAD and online) and alum can use the Writing Center. The Writing Center also assists staff and faculty.
- When is the Writing Center open and where is it located?
The Writing Center is located on the “South Side” of the library, to the left after you enter.
You will see a sign that says “Tutoring and Writing.” Please check in at this desk so that we can pair you with your tutor! (If you don’t check in, your tutor may not know that you’re hereJ).
- Do I have to schedule an appointment?
Appointments are not required but highly recommended. We can accommodate some walk-ins, but there is no guarantee that someone will be available to meet with you.
If you make an appointment for an open time slot, you are guaranteed to meet with someone!
- How do I schedule an appointment?
You can schedule an appointment for yourself directly on the Writing Center Google calendar, which can be accessed here! If you have any questions about this process or have any difficulties, you can email email@example.com for assistance.
- What if something happens and I cannot make my appointment?
Life happens and we understand, but please let us know if you need to cancel an appointment. You can either delete the appointment on the calendar or send an email to let us know. It is important to cancel your appointment because another student may want that time slot.
No show policy: Students with two no show appointments without notifying us will not be allowed to schedule an appointment for the remainder of the semester.
- I am not able to come to campus, can I email my paper to the Writing Center?
Tutors are trained to work 1-1 in person, but we do allow some email submissions. We have a 24 hour response time during the week and longer over the weekends since we are not open Saturday and Sunday.
Also, please do not email an entire paper and say “please correct.” Let us know what aspect you’d like the tutor to focus on, for example APA, MLA, organization, strength of thesis, etc.
- Will a tutor correct my paper? Can I drop my paper off for copy-editing and pick it up later?
No, you cannot simply drop off your paper for corrections.
While we will provide some help with grammar and punctuation, we are teachers, not editors, so we do not go through and correct all grammatical errors.
If we simply make corrections, writers will not learn the rules and conventions of written language.
Instead, we will look for patterns of errors, teach you the relevant grammatical/punctuation rules and then help you identify the errors so that you become a better writer.
For example, if we notice that you have a lot of fragments, we will point out a fragment, show you the different ways to correct it, and then challenge you to find other fragments and make the corrections.
If a writer struggles with commas, we will identify sentences with comma errors, teach comma rules and then work with you to find and correct other sentences with comma errors.
- What should I bring?
It’s a good idea to bring a copy of the assignment description/requirements, grading rubric and/or course syllabus, including any notes, outlines, or rough drafts. You may also want to bring a laptop or other device in case we need to access content on Blackboard for more information or clarification of an assignment.
- What can I expect from a tutoring session?
You can expect to meet a tutor who will help you with any aspect of any stage of any kind of writing, as much as time permits in a 30 minute session.
You can expect to meet a person who is friendly, patient and knowledgeable, who will help you decide what needs improvement in your writing. The tutor will then teach you the necessary skills to improve not just your paper, but your writing as well.
You can expect this tutor, and the Writing Center, to keep working with you for as long as you need, whether that means one session, one week, one semester, or your whole time at CSP.
Please do not expect your tutor to get through everything in one session, especially if you have a long paper or a paper with lots of comments and corrections by your professor.
Good writing comes through revision and multiple drafts, so the sooner you come in for tutoring, the more tutoring sessions you’ll be able attend, the better your paper/project will be.
As mentioned above, don’t expect to get your papers corrected or proofread, which is called editing. (You may not know this, but it is against policy for tutors to edit papers.) The Writing Center works directly with you to help you improve as a writer so that you can learn to recognize these errors on your own.
- When should I come to the Writing Center?
As early and as frequently as possible. Tutors are generally not able to help much if you come in a few hours before a paper is due.
Good writing comes through revision. It is best to come in to get some help getting started and then again for rough and final draft reviews.
- How many times can I come to the Writing Center? You may come to the Writing Center up to three times per week, one 30 minute session per day.
- What if I haven’t started my paper?
- Your tutor will help you understand the requirements and expectations of the assignment.
- Your tutor will help you plan out your paper before you start, choosing among several different brainstorming and outlining techniques to find an approach that’s comfortable for you;
- Your tutor can help you decide what kinds of sources you’ll need to find and read (if your assignment requires them).
- Be sure to bring the assignment description with you so your tutor understand what your professors expect!
If your paper is in progress:
- Your tutor can help you find a focus, find ideas, and begin to write your paper
- Your tutor can help you with your paper’s thesis, organization and development
- Your tutor can help you with research techniques, from integrating sources to citing those sources in MLA/APA
- Your tutor can let you know if you are already making grammar errors of one type or another.
If you have received feedback from your professor:
If you come in to revise a paper that has been marked and graded, your tutor can go over it line by line and error by error with you, in one or more sessions. The tutor will also decide what materials and tasks to work on with him/her, for as many sessions as you need.
If you come to work on a paper that has not been marked and graded by your teacher, or that you haven’t even started, there are several things your tutor can and cannot do. As already mentioned, a tutor may not proofread and edit the whole paper. But there is a great deal your tutor can do to help you.
If you have a finished draft:
- Your tutor can read through the whole paper in one or more sessions, time permitting, and give you a specific evaluation of the strengths and weaknesses in your paper;
- Your tutor can carefully review and discuss your paper’s thesis, organization and development, use of resources and APA/MLA;
- Your tutor can point out examples of error patterns in your paper and can help you correct the beginning of the paper, to help you understand what to look for in the rest of the paper;
- Your tutor can choose from extensive Writing Center resources and handouts to help you learn more about the kinds of errors in your paper.
I want to become a Writing Center tutor. How do I apply?
Writing Center tutors take ENG 324 Teaching 1-1. Only in rare cases do we accept applications from students who have not taken the course. If you are interested in becoming a Writing Center tutor, please email your resume to Joel Bisser at firstname.lastname@example.org.