What The Writer’s Block does:
The Writer’s Block is an on-campus resource for students who need assistance with writing assignments. Writing assistants will sit down with students for a one-on-one tutorial to help:
- Organize the paper
- Identify grammatical errors
- Clarify claims
- Revise per instructor comments
- Develop evidence
- Brainstorm/Outline ideas
- Assist with citation
Writing assistants are trained to evaluate the structure, clarity, and development of a paper, with particular focus on how well the paper responds to the assignment and how effectively the content is developed through claims and evidence. Writing assistants may help students identify grammatical mistakes, but they will not edit a student’s paper. Students are encouraged to visit more than once before a deadline so that writing assistants have time to help them formulate strong papers.
Who the Writing Assistants are:
Our writing assistants come from majors such as English, Biology, Education, Business, and Communications, which allows them to provide assistance with papers from a variety of disciplines.
What students should bring to a tutorial:
- An assignment sheet
- A rough draft of the paper
- Source materials (if relevant)
- An attitude that is willing to engage and work hard
What to expect during the tutorial:
Students are asked to sign in at the beginning of the session, which may last up to an hour depending on the student’s needs. Each tutorial is different, but in a standard session:
- The writing assistant begins with a conversation about the assignment, the work already done, and the help that is needed;
- The writing assistant reads through the assignment sheet and draft to ascertain how well the draft meets the goals of the assignment;
- The writing assistant offers feedback on content, organization, and/or style;
- After a productive conversation, the writing assistant ends the tutorial with a reminder about what the student needs to work on before submitting the paper.
Please note that writing assistants are here to help students in any way they can, but they cannot “fix” a paper for students or guarantee them an “A”. They will offer advice, help students identify and address problem areas, and provide feedback on the overall effectiveness of the paper. However, only students should make editorial decisions about their own work and only students can capitalize on the feedback they receive by putting the work into their paper.
Writing Studio Module
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Come check us out at our website where you can make an appointment for in-person, synchronous online, and/or asynchronous online tutoring services. We’re at https://blackburn.edu/writersblock