Frequently Asked Questions
What exactly does the Writing Center do?
The Writing Center is a free tutoring service offered to all currently enrolled MTSU students, staffed by MTSU undergraduate and graduate students. We offer one-on-one support with brainstorming, outlining, formatting, organizing, revising, and editing, facilitating your growth as a writer and helping you reach your full potential as a writer.
What will my visit be like?
For a face-to-face session in LIB 362: when you first arrive, you should check-in at the front desk. You can then have a seat at one of our tables, lounge chairs, or computers.
For a synchronous online session: you will have to register online and schedule an appointment. Don't worry - you can call us during open hours and we can walk you through it. Then, at the time of your appointment, you will head back to the online system and click on the virtual session and a writing consultant will be waiting for you. You will be able to upload your assignment and draft(s) to share during the online session.
Regardless if you meet with a consultant face-to-face or virtually, what happens from that point depends on you and what kind of session you have signed up for. We understand that everybody learns and writes differently, and our goal is to help you discover or refine the writing practices that work best for you. We know that sharing your writing can be really intimidating, but don’t worry! Our awesome Writing Consultants are here to help you.
Just how awesome are the Writing Consultants?
We are chock-full of awesome. Our consultants are dedicated, empathetic, and approachable folks who love to talk about writing. They engage in rigorous, ongoing training designed to deepen their tutoring practice. The UWC recruits talented students from all majors and minors, and currently our team represents 10 different disciplines from across the institution. Don't believe us? Come in and find out!
How do I make an appointment?
How often can I schedule appointments?
I’m working on a group project. Can we come in for a group session?
Yes. Our scheduling system requires that the appointment be made under a single student’s name, so you’ll have to decide which one of you will be responsible for making and keeping track of any appointments. Also, please let us know when you make the appointment how many people will be attending. See our Policies page for more info about group sessions.
I’m a distance learner and can’t come to campus. Can the Writing Center help me?
Absolutely! We serve the entire MTSU writing community, and that includes our distance learners! We offer online consultations very similar to our in-person consultations. We also have a variety of resources on our website for downloading.
What are Writing Partnerships?
A Writing Partnership is a long-term session available for students who feel they would be best served by meeting with a consultant at a set time once a week. To be eligible for a Writing Partnership, you will need to have a long-term writing goal in mind. This could be anything from preparing for a test such as the GRE or PPST to improving a particular set of writing skills. A Writing Partnership is also a great option for someone working on a longer project like a thesis, dissertation, or novel.
Is the Writing Center only for English papers?
No! The Writing Center is here to help writers from all disciplines, and we also serve our community of faculty and staff. Our writing consultants come from a wide range of disciplinary homes and are trained to act as interested readers for writing in any discipline and in any genre, whether that's a lab report, a personal statement, an ENG 1010 paper, or an Master of Liberal Arts capstone project.
Can the Writing Center help with with speeches or presentations?
We will be happy to help you prepare for your speech or presentation. We even have space for you and/or your group to practice with one of our Writing Consultants to give you feedback, so please bring your powerpoint or keynote. We can also help with designing research posters and practicing elevator pitches!
Can you help with writing that isn’t for a class?
We can! We serve the entire MTSU community with all types of writing. Anything you are writing from academic letters, resumes, and applications, to limericks, short stories, songs, and novels are fantastic things to bring to the Writing Center.
Can you fix my commas?
We can help you identify patterns of error, find resources to help you learn comma rules, and we can model editing strategies. Our goal is for you to become an independent, confident writer, and that includes focusing on all parts of the writing process, from brainstorming to editing. Don’t worry -- we’ll be here to help you along the way!
I don’t have Microsoft Word! What do I do?
Don’t worry. All MTSU students have access to Microsoft Word via their Office 365 ProPlus subscription. Visit the Office 365ProPlus info page for more information.
Where can I find UWC handouts?
Our complete list of handouts can be found on our Online Resources page.
Can I work in the Writing Center?
We are always looking for motivated, talented undergraduate and graduate students from all disciplines to work in our center. Undergraduates must have already completed ENGL 1020 (or the equivalent) with a B or better. We prefer that undergraduate students have prior tutoring experience or have been through a tutor training program, but it is not required. The English Department offers ENGL 3550 ("Introduction to Peer Tutoring in Writing: Theory and Methods") that provides students with the foundations of tutoring writing as well as experience working in the MTSU Writing Center. Graduate tutors are encouraged to apply, regardless of program or assistantship status. Please fill out a UWC Employment Application Form and send all required materials to Dr. James Hamby (James.Hamby@mtsu.edu).
Walker Library, Room 362