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1. Where is the Writing Center?

We’re located in the Academic Success Center, on the second floor of Saint Joseph Hall.

2. Do students need an appointment?

Yes. Students may sign up for either 30 or 60 minute sessions with a tutor (one appointment per day, up to three appointments per week), by calling 518-454-5299 or stopping by the front desk of the Academic Success Center to make an appointment. See the current semester’s tutoring schedule for more information.

3. Who are the Writing Center tutors?

The tutors are graduate students who demonstrate strong communication skills, an aptitude for writing, understanding of the writing process, and the ability to work with students in a tutoring setting. Tutors also consist of the Writing Center Director and the Professional Tutor. Graduate students can request to work with either the Writing Center Director or the Professional Tutor. If we cannot accommodate schedules, rest-assured that our Graduate Assistants are well-trained to work with large-scale research projects.

4. My student said s/he visited the Writing Center, but the paper still has many errors. Why?

The tutors work with students first on higher order concerns (thesis, organization, development, support, and coherence) before addressing later concerns and surface errors (grammar, capitalization, and punctuation). Students are encouraged to visit the Writing Center multiple times with the same assignment to strengthen their skills in the various aspects of the writing process. Tutors are not editors or proofreaders. They will discuss patterns of errors in a student’s writing and explain, by addressing a few examples in the paper, how to remedy the errors. It is then the responsibility of the student to make the needed changes in the rest of the paper. Our hope is that by working with the student in this way, the student will develop more independence and confidence in their writing, and we strongly believe in the importance of this end goal.

5. Can I require my students to visit the Writing Center?

While it is not always effective to require student visits to the Writing Center, encouraging them to come or offering extra credit tends to be more effective. We also encourage you to bring your entire class for a short visit, or allowing us to visit your classroom to give a brief 5-10 minute overview of the Writing Center services and what we can do to support your students. Contact the Academic Success Center or the director, Kelly Chase to make arrangements.

6. How can I help my students get the best assistance possible at the Writing Center?

Send assignment guidelines (sometimes known as the prompt), and any rubrics to the Writing Center, when possible. Encourage students to make appointments and bring the assignment materials with them.

7. Can I find out if a student has visited the Writing Center?

Tell the student to request a stamp from the tutor. The student can then staple their stamped sheet to the assignment, or show it to you separately.

8. Is the Writing Center staff available for classroom visits?

Yes. The tutoring staff is available to visit classrooms to provide information on a variety of topics:

  • Overview of The Writing Center Services
  • MLA, APA, and Chicago Manual Style Documentation Styles
  • Thesis Statements
  • Revision
  • Peer Review
  • Academic Integrity
  • If you would like a workshop on a different topic, please reach out and I will be happy to work with you.

Graduate-specific Workshops

In addition to workshops for undergraduates, we would also offer writing workshops that are specific for the needs of graduate students.

  • Annotated Bibliographies
  • Argument
  • Developing a Research Topic and Elevator Pitch
  • Evaluating and Choosing Sources
  • Literature Reviews
  • Managing the Process of a Large Writing Project
  • Reading Critically
  • Revision and Peer Review
  • If you would like a workshop on a different topic, please reach out and I will be happy to work with you.