Why should I encourage students to make use of the UTC Writing Center?
If you assign writing in your course--whether a short summary or abstract or longer papers--your students will benefit from having an audience beyond the class and/or you. During the process of reading a text to a live audience, student writers often self-edit and revise for content. Further, simply having one more person respond to a text can help a writer better imagine how an intended audience may receive the piece.
Will the consultants write the papers for the students?
Our consultants are trained in peer response; therefore, they use strategies to ensure that student writers retain ownership of their texts. In fact, consultants encourage writers to read their own papers aloud, make their own notes for revision, etc. Rather than correct or edit papers, our consultants share with writers editing and proofreading strategies and ask questions for clarification. In fact, because our consultants are students, human beings who are fallible, we emphasize our roles as audiences, rather than experts. Therefore, rather than simply answer a question about citation format, our consultants will show writers where and how to locate the answers to such questions: in one of our many style guides or writers' resources.
Should I send students to the center/require that they meet with a consultant?
Often, students feel punished or singled out (embarrassed) when professors send them to writing centers or other consultation services. Consequently, these students tend to come to sessions unmotivated and disengaged, answering in response to a consultant’s prompt about what they would like to work on, “I don’t know. I'm here because my professor sent me here.” Students in classes where professors encourage all of their students to make use of the center will come to think of seeking out peer feedback as a natural part of academic life. Thus, if throughout the semester you have repeatedly reminded your students of the UTC Writing Center, when you feel especially compelled to encourage a specific student to make use of our services, that student is more likely to feel positive about your recommendation.
Extra Credit: Some professors like to give extra credit to students who participate in tutoring sessions. To ensure that these sessions are interactive, we require student writers to complete a Consultation Session Self-Assessments form, which they may give their professors. This form is designed to help student writers reflect upon their attempts to actively participate in and get the most out of sessions. Because self reflection helps writers grow, we prefer to have the student, rather than the consultant, fill out any session reports.
What types of presentations does the Writing Center staff offer?
- In-Class Presentations Describing our Services: During the first 4 weeks of each semester, our staff will give brief (5-10 minute) presentations, in which we announce our services and hours, handout bookmarks/brochures, invite students to make use of our services, and answer any questions students may have about the center.
- In-Center Presentations: During the first 6 weeks of the semester, professors may reserve a block of time (usually 10-15 minutes) on our appointment book for an in-center visit. During this visit, our staff will show students our resources, explain what goes on during consultation sessions, hand out brochures with our hours and phone number, and invite students to sign up for an appointment.
- Writing Process/Peer Review Facilitation: Throughout the semester, our staff will gladly work with professors to design assignments and peer review sheets, and we will come to classes to help lead students in peer review.
How do I request one of these presentations?
To request an in-class or in-center presentation, simply call the UTC Writing Center at 425-1774 or email the director: Jennifer-Beech@utc.edu