What You Can Expect From Us
- Flexibility. You decide how invovled the Writing Center will be in your course. Our directors are happy to help you navigate your options.
- Class visits. We'd love to send a tutor to visit your class. They can explain the Writing Center and show students how to schedule an appointment.
- Monthly instructor reports. If your students visit the Writing Center, we'll send you a report at the beginning of the following month. You can request additional reports at any point.
- Assignment resources and tips. Use our Writing Center assignment template and tips when building your class assignment on Canvas.
- Appointment options. We offer a varitey of appointment modalities, locations, and appointment lengths to meet your students' unique schedules and needs.
Why Use the Writing Center?
At the USU Writing Center, we believe writing isn’t just a thing we do, but an extension of everything we do. We care deeply about supporting students through the writing process because strong communicators become powerful leaders, teachers, and advocates. During our one-with-one tutoring sessions, we ask questions, explore ideas, research solutions, practice writing concepts, and build connections.
We conduct nearly 10,000 appointments annually with thousands of USU students from over 300 courses. Our team of skilled peer mentors would love to work with your students!
Step One: Decide Your Invovlement
The majority of USU students find the Writing Center through course-required visits or instructor referrals. This makes teachers are our most valuable outreach tool for student success. Some instructors require one or two appointments during the semester. Other instructors simply share the Writing Center as a resource. We're happy to support you in whatever you decide.
The following approaches are common ways instructors utilize the Writing Center. Thank you for trusting us with your students!
Require an Appointment
Send your students to the Writing Center as part of their writing assignment. Roughly 70% of our appointments are for required visits.
Offer Extra Credit
Tutoring is an excellent way for students to supplement their learning. Use the Writing Center for an extra credit or make-up assignment.
Share the Writing Center
Share the Writing Center as a resource. Include our information in an assignment description or your course syllabus.
Refer a Student
Send us your students who could benefit from additional writing support. We love to work with students on individual assignments and long-term writing skills.
Step Two: Notify the Writing Center
Please email us if you require your students to attend the Writing Center. It helps us to know how many students to expect and when. We would also love a copy of your assignment requirements and a model essay. Let us know if your students struggle with any aspect of the assignment. We will pass along your assignment materials and advice to our tutors.
Email: email@example.com (This is the best way to contact us!)
Office: Ray B. West 104
Phone: None. If you would like to talk with a director, contact Susan Andersen at 435-797-2726
Step Three: Use Canvas
For required or extra-credit visits, we suggest creating a Canvas assignment. Most instructors have students submit a screenshot of their Writing Center report to prove their attendance. Feel free to use our assignment template and adapt it to your course.
Writing Center Assignment Template
Tips for Writing Center Assignments
- Send your students early in the writing process. The earlier the student works with the Writing Center, the more likely they are to spend time considering their audience, genre conventions, content, and organization.
- Avoid sending your students during midterms and dead week. The Writing Center is at maxiumum capacity during these times. It's easier for students to schedule Writing Center appointments on weeks 2-4 and 7-12 of the semester. We are not open the first week of semester.
- Set clear expectations. Help students understand that their participation is vital during Writing Center appointments. Tutors are not editors.
- Familiarize your students with our appointment options. We have three on-campus locations and two online appointment options. Students from any course are welcome at any of our writing centers. You can learn more on our locations page.
Step Four: Update Your Syllabus
We reccomend sharing information about the Writing Center in your syllabus. Doing so ensures that students are aware of our resources early in the semester. Feel free to use and adapt the following text for your course syllabus:
The USU Writing Center provides a welcoming and inclusive environment designed to enhance your communication skills. As a student at USU, you have the opportunity to collaborate with a writing tutor who can assist you with writing at all levels, across all subjects and assignments, and throughout every stage of the writing process. Writing Center tutors are students themselves, who will build on your strengths and empower you to express your ideas. During the one-with-one tutoring sessions (either in person or online), both you and your tutor can ask questions, explore ideas, research solutions, practice writing techniques, and build connections. You can learn more and schedule an appointment a writing.usu.edu.
Step Five: Arrange a Class Visit
We reccomend scheduling a Writing Center class visit. During the visit, a tutor will come to your course to explain the Writing Center and demonstrate how to schedule an appointment. Class visits typically take place at the beginning or end of the class period and last five to seven minutes.
Request a Class Visit
Step Six: Use Reports to Inform Instruction
At the end of each month, we compile instructor reports for the teachers whose students attended the Writing Center. We email out the reports within the first week of the following month. You are welcome to email us to request additional instructor reports at any point in the semester.
We encourage you to review the session notes to see what questions and concerns your students are discussing with their tutors. Note common themes and adapt your instruction as needed.
Instructor reports include
- Student's name and A#
- Appointment date, time, location, and duration
- Tutor's name
- Session summary notes
Instructor and Student Feedback
"I've been sending my students to the Writing Center for help on their two major assignments in my English 2010 course for years now, and the papers are always improved because of it. I often ask students about their experience in the Writing Center and they usually reply in words such as these: 'I didn't really want to go to the Writing Center to begin with, but I was wrong. The tutor I met with helped me with the elements in my writing I struggle with. I'll be going again—not only for this class but for all my other papers in college.'"
"I did notice an improvement between the rough and final drafts on this assignment. It's a unique type of writing, so there are still some kinks that need to be worked out, but - overall - I think it was a beneficial experience for my students. Specifically, I appreciated the advice I saw given for students to write strong thesis statements. Organization by topic sentence is one of the most common mistakes I see in my course, and I feel there was improvement." -Kenna Kesler
"My biggest takeaway from this week was the Writing Center. I did my visit over zoom because I was skeptical, but it actually helped a lot. I think my visit was only about 20 minutes. It was definitely worth the visit for how short it was. It’s focused feedback, which I thought was very effective. Whenever you do peer reviews, you usually don’t receive much context or specific things that need to be targeted. I think the visits are set up super well and it is definitely something that I will use in the future." -Student
99.5% of Students
Found their session worthwhile
99.6% of Students
Felt their tutor listened to and addressed their questions and concerns
99.6% of Students
Felt their tutor discussed their writing rather than just correcting their mistakes
89.8% of Students
Said they would book another appointment at the Writing Center in the future
"I just wanted to say how much I appreciate you making us go to the writing center. Having someone push me to do something I didn't exactly want to do was actually a huge blessing so thank you. I loved the tutor I got and I thought she gave me amazing feedback and helped me add on and look at my word meditation in a different way. I will 100% be going back for any future essays and for the ones we have to do in your class." -Student
"I have never been one to use the writing center, but this experience helped me a lot. I received a lot of improvements in my writing. I did the virtual option where you send your paper and the tutor sends back feedback. This is really helpful because I am a fairly busy person, so it does not take much time at all. It was a really simple and easy process, that had a really big impact. I will definitely be using this for future assignments." -Student
"A big takeaway for me was the writing lab visit. I was very impressed by the quality of help. The TA who helped me gave me a better perspective on my paper with prompt questions. They were questions that, as I answered them, really brought the best quality out of me. That along with all the other tips and advice given were of great help. I plan to continue to use the writing lab more." -Student