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Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the Writing Center?

We have two locations. The main writing center can be found in Building 51, in Room 117. The second location, the Write Place Satellite, is located in the library in the Miller center building on the first floor, way back by the copy room and periodicals.

Do I need an appointment before I come to the Writing Center?

Very often, consultants are available for drop-in appointments. However, just before and during midterm and in the weeks leading up to finals week, we get very busy. If you want to insure that a consultant will be available to work with you, please do call ahead.

How do I make an appointment?

You can make an appointment by going to our website at http://www.stcloudstate.edu/writeplace/ and then by clicking on "make an appointment with a consultant. Or, if you prefer you may call 308-2031 and our receptionist will help you make an appointment. T

When in the writing process should I make an appointment with a consultant?

Generally speaking, the earlier in the process you begin to work with a consultant, the more help she or he can give you. We encourage you to come in when you are in the planning and early drafting stages and to continue to work with a consultant throughout your writing process. Most students who use our services come in when they are nearly finished with a writing project. We are certainly willing and able to help at this stage, but we know that there are limits to the depth and quality of feedback we can provide when writers have limited time for revision.

What should I bring with me to my Writing Center appointment?

If you are working on an academic assignment, bring your syllabus and any written description of your writing assignment your professor may have given you. Bring a draft of your paper, pens and pencils, a notepad and any research notes you are working from.

What should I expect during a Writing Center tutorial?

You should expect to do a lot of talking and thinking. Whether you are planning your writing, drafting and revision, or are working on final editing your consultant will be asking you lots of questions and giving you plenty of opportunity to ask your own questions. consultants won't tell you what to write, nor will they copyedit papers for you. Instead, they are charged with helping you learn to think like a writer - particularly, a writer in an academic community. They will model the kinds of questions academic writers ask themselves. The consultants will help you think about who your audience is and how to write in ways that your audience will recognize as being legitimate, convincing, compelling. When you are talking with your consultant about citations, syntax, or copyediting issues, they will teach you the concept and then give you opportunities to apply the concept with their help. You'll recognize this as "learning by doing." You will be disappointed in your tutorial if you expect your consultant to correct your writing for you or if you expect your consultant to do all the talking. Writing Center tutorials are highly interactive.

How many appointments can I have with a consultant?

We recommend you make no more than one tutorial a day. Tutorials are labor-intensive for both writers and consultants; you will lose your ability to concentrate and to remember your conversation after an hour. Also, because of high demand for our services, we ask that you not schedule more than three hours of tutorial time each week. We want to cultivate independence and confidence among student-writers at St. Cloud State University. Becoming too dependent on our consultants will be counter-productive. For additional policy guidelines concerning length and number of tutorial hours per week, call 308-2031.

What if I am unable to come to the Writing Center due to distance, illness, or other inconvenience?

Although we recommend a face to face consultation as the most effective working arrangement, sometimes it may be difficult come to the writing center. In that case, you may want to try making an online appointment with a consultant. These appointments are synchronous; that is, they are done in real time via an IM function. Both the writer and the consultant are able to see and work on the paper, which is uploaded to our online module. For more information, contact us at 308-2031.

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