Writing Tutoring is located in Room 181 of the Albert W. Brown Building
What is the purpose of the Writing Tutoring Program?
The purpose of the writing tutoring program is to help students develop a more comprehensive understanding of the conventions of college-level writing. To facilitate this, tutors discuss writing assignments, listen and respond to students' drafts, introduce students to various writing strategies, and help students understand the reader/writer relationship.
Who are the writing tutors?ASC writing tutors include 1 professional writing tutor and a mix of graduate and undergraduate student tutors from a variety of academic majors, including three Graduate Assistants from the department of English and one from the department of History. Student tutors are hired based on academic achievement, faculty recommendations, and interpersonal communication skills. Writing tutors participate in a training seminar where they learn about the theoretical perspectives that inform writing center work as well as practical tutoring pedagogy.
What happens during a writing tutorial?
While every tutoring session is unique, tutors follow general protocols at each stage of the writing process. At the start of most tutorials, writing tutors read over written assignment sheets and help students set goals for the session.
Pre-writing & Planning
Some students want to discuss the assignment guidelines in detail, develop a plan of action, and talk about time management. Others may find it helpful to brainstorm paper topics or sketch an outline with their tutors. Conversations like these are often helpful in the prewriting stage.
Other students bring in a complete first draft. Tutoring works best when students prepare a few questions in advance or identify a particular section of the piece they want to discuss. Tutors typically have students read their drafts aloud which helps them discover strengths and weaknesses in their writing while staying active in the tutorial. Tutors may comment on or ask questions about the thesis, paragraph development and organization, use of evidence, and/or the citation of sources. Tutors will generally focus on a few specific issues in any given tutorial.
Editing or Proofreading
Tutors help students identify syntax, punctuation, and grammar issues; they review rules and patterns, and help students explore options for making editorial choices. This process takes time and requires student engagement, which is very different from proofreading and editing. Tutors are neither proofreaders nor editors.
Will Tutors Read an Entire Paper?
That depends on the length and quality of the paper. Tutors will typically have enough time to read and respond to approximately 3-6 pages of a draft and then ask the student to work on the remaining pages independently, applying the concepts discussed in the tutorial.
What are Writing Logs?
Tutors will focus on a few specific writing issues in a single tutorial and introduce students to strategies to improve these. Tutors encourage students to put new writing strategies and rules into their own words or jot them down in a writing log for future reference.
Should I still see my professor during office hours?
Tutors encourage students to visit with professors to gain a deeper understanding of the assignment, get additional feedback on drafts, or to discuss grades as needed.
Why is this taking so long? I just want my paper looked over!
Writing tutoring is an educational process, not a quick fix, that requires thinking, conversation, and time. For example, instead of correcting grammar or punctuation for students, tutors identify patterns, explain the rules of academic English, and talk about options for re-working sentences. Planning tutoring time in advance of paper due dates is essential.
It hasn’t been a full hour; why is my tutor wrapping up?
Appointments are 55 minutes in length. After about 45 minutes of tutoring, tutors will begin the closure process, reviewing topics discussed and encouraging students to make a list of things that they will work on independently in order to put into practice what they learned. Tutors may refer to this list as an “action plan.” The last 5 minutes of each hour are reserved for the tutors to complete their notes.
Can Students Walk In?
Walk-in tutoring, while sometimes available, is not guaranteed. Sometimes tutors will not be available for a full, 55 minute tutoring session when a student walks in for help. A shorter visit will limit the scope and depth of discussion. It is best for students to schedule an appointment so that they enjoy the benefit of a full tutoring session. If, however, students have only a couple of very specific questions about a paper, then a shorter session may be appropriate.
How do students schedule an appointment?
To schedule an appointment with a writing tutor, students should log in to EagleSUCCESS and click on My Success Network. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on Show Other Services. Click on Schedule under ASC Writing Tutoring.
- Students should schedule appointments a few days in advance of assignment due dates. Scheduling in advance ensures that students get to choose a day and time that is most convenient for them.
- Students may make a maximum of one appointment per day, and may have a maximum of three appointments per week. Exceptions will sometimes be made at the discretion of staff.
- Tutoring for a single assignment, including a thesis (with multiple chapters) or a synthesis paper, will usually not exceed three appointments. Exceptions will sometimes be made at the discretion of staff.
Is Online Writing Tutoring Available?
Online writing tutoring is available to all Brockport students through STAR-NY. STAR-NY tutors are available on a first-come, first-served basis, Sundays through Thursdays from 7:00-11:59 p.m. Go to STAR-NY online tutoring, click "request a tutor," and login using your netID and password.
Students who are taking classes online or at Brockport Downtown may also call ASC tutoring at (585) 395-2293 and ask to schedule an appointment for a remote writing tutoring session. Availability for remote writing tutoring is limited and cannot be guaranteed.
General Principles of Writing Tutoring
- The writing assistance available for students at the ASC is an educational process. Writing tutoring is not the same as “editing” or “proofreading” to comprehensively identify and correct all of the errors in a manuscript.
- The student is required to be actively engaged in the tutoring process which means taking notes, being willing to try out new writing strategies, or learning to use resources such as grammar handbooks or citation manuals.
- The writing assistance available for graduate students working on theses or synthesis papers is the same as the assistance for undergraduate students working on any other writing assignment.
- Writing tutoring at ASC Tutoring follows instructional pedagogy that is consistent with writing center best practices. Time limits for single tutorials and weekly visit limits are reflective of those practices, and students must respect the tutors’ responsibility to uphold these practices.
- Writing tutoring does not guarantee a high grade on a written assignment. Tutors will most likely focus on a few specific writing issues in a given tutorial. Therefore, not every issue will be addressed. Grading student work is the responsibility of course instructors and thesis advisors.