First time WC visitor? Some information for you!

Are you planning on scheduling your very first appointment at Marshall University’s Writing Center? Wonderful! We can’t wait to work with you. Here’s some information that will be helpful for you to know prior to your visit:

Our Mission:

Engaging one-on-one with students across the disciplines at any writing level during all stages of the writing process to help develop composition skills, not just for individual papers, but for the rest of students’ writing lives.

What we will do:

Because our mission is to equip students with the skills they need to become better writers, your tutor will scaffold your appointment to address top priority issues first. The progression of an appointment will generally follow this order:

  1. Content issues – Your tutor will be reading over your work for clarity of overall thoughts and ideas – for instance, if there is a conflict between your thesis and main ideas, that conflict will be addressed first. The strength of your writing depends most on this!
  2. Structural issues – If your ideas are not flowing in a natural progression, your tutor may make suggestions about restructuring or rearranging certain sections or elements of your paper.
  3. Local issues – This includes smaller issues like grammatical errors. The Writing Center does not operate as a simple editing service –this sort of help alone would not give students the tools they need to become better, more competent writers. Because this is our primary concern, your tutor will not address grammar until priorities number 1 and 2 have been resolved.

What you can do:

  • When possible, bring a hard copy of your paper to your appointment.
  • Always bring the assignment sheet that your professor provides.
  • Come prepared to learn from your tutor, not to get your work “fixed.”
  • Think ahead! – in order to ensure that you have adequate time to address your tutor’s suggestions, please make your appointment at the very least one day, but preferably two + days prior to the due date.
  • Be prepared to do follow-up work on your own to address your tutor’s suggestions before you turn in your paper.

What you can expect:

  • Your paper will be read aloud. Your tutor may read your paper out loud or ask you to do so as they follow along. This is a technique which helps both the tutor and you, as a writer, hear the flow of the composition as well as target any problematic areas.
  • You are expected to be an active part in your Writing Center session. Your tutor may ask you to verbally explain your thoughts or argument, prompt you to participate in writing related exercises, or ask you to answer specific questions concerning your assignment.
  • You are not guaranteed an A. We aim to help you improve your writing and critical thinking skills of which your assignment will directly benefit from, but we cannot guarantee certain letter grades for your assignments. Level of writing proficiency and the stage at which assignments and projects are brought into the writing center varies among appointments. We will tackle a realistic amount of tasks based on importance for the 30 minute to hour-long session.

-Shannah and Amber




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