The Writing Center's Policy on Tutoring


1. We do not proofread as we are not a proofreading service. Instead, in the Writing Center, we can assist the student by reading the introductory paragraph and one additional paragraph to obtain a snapshot of the student’s writing deficiencies and provide a guideline thereby to aid in remediation. We check the thesis and topic sentence in each body paragraph (depending on the instructor’s required essay format) and the conclusion for congruency. Having done such, the instructor/tutor may then point out several different types of errors found in the student’s paper and give him or her strategies by which such errors can be corrected. The tutor does not read the student’s entire paper or change the student’s content. It is the student’s responsibility to go through the entire paper to find similar errors and correct them. The ultimate purpose of the Center is to help the student learn how to proofread his or her own papers.


2. We encourage students to seek assistance before the due date of the paper. The goal of the Center is to help the student with the writing process, not to produce a perfect paper for the student in one session. Thus, the Center requests a three-day time frame for help with papers in order to give the student time to invest in his/her writing assignment and to assist the large number of students requesting assistance. Seeking help for a paper on the day that it is due does not help the student with the process of producing quality writing assignments. The instructor/tutor will ask the student first when the paper is due, what class the paper is for, and what type of paper it is supposed to be, prior to starting the remediation process. Professors should provide a copy of the guidelines for the writing assignment.


3. The student must have something written down before center personnel can assist him/her; however, center personnel may explain to the student how an assignment is to be done. After all, pre-writing is one of the services we provide. The ideas presented in the student’s paper must be his/her own.


4. We do not guarantee flawless papers or even attempt to predict the letter grade that classroom instructors will assign to the student’s work. The student’s paper should be a reflection of the caliber of work he or she is capable of producing, and it is not our function to make the determination as to proficiency in terms of grading.


5. Approximately 15 to 20 minutes is a sufficient amount of time to spend with one student on a particular skill. We do not hold the student’s hands in an effort to guide him/her through an assignment. Rather, we can assist him/her in identifying grammar skills or mechanical usage errors and attempt to help rectify such errors by explaining the associated rule and providing independent practice on such skills.



If there are any questions or requests for further information, please consult the Writing Center personnel. The telephone number is 229-4320.