These are questions that students often ask about the Writing Center:
- Who can use the Writing Center?
- How do I see a tutor?
- Can I see the same tutor each time I come to the Writing Center?
- How many times can I come to the Writing Center?
- What will my tutoring session be like?
- What can I expect of tutoring at the Writing Center?
• If you haven’t started your paper
• If your paper is in progress
• If you have a finished draft
• If your paper is marked
• If you just want to work on a specific aspect of writing
- What doesn’t the Writing Center do?
- Will my professor know if I attend the Writing Center?
1.Who can use the Writing Center?
Any matriculating LaGuardia student from any course beyond the ESL sequence, from English to Business Management to Physical Therapy to Sociology to – anything! can bring any sort of writing to the Writing Center for tutoring. If you’ve already taken classes at LaGuardia but are taking a semester off, you are still welcome to get tutoring at the Writing Center.
1a. Who can’t use the Writing Center?
Sorry! Anyone who is not a matriculating student at LaGuardia, including students who have not yet begun to take classes or students in Continuing Education programs, cannot use the Writing Center. The Writing Center is also unfortunately not available to students after graduation.
2. How do I see a tutor?
Tutoring at the online Writing Center is by appointment. To get a tutoring appointment, all students need to do is log into My LaGuardia on a Web browser and scroll down; the red Writing Center appointment button is on the lower right side. When using the mobile app, from Home, students scroll to click on the Student Scheduler, and then then select Writing Center.
Several pointers to keep in mind:
- Before your actual appointment, register for Zoom at Zoom.us, if you haven’t already. It’s absolutely free and very quick.
- Fifteen (15) minutes before the time of your appointment, be sure to check in by sending an email to WCLab@lagcc.cuny.edu using your LaGuardia email or Gmail so that we know that you’re here. Minutes later a tutor will contact you for your session.
- If you do not email WCLab@lagcc.cuny.edu at the time of your appointment no one will know you are waiting and you will not be contacted.
- You still have to be on time, and as always, after the first five minutes your appointment may be given to someone on the Wait List.
- If you are on the Wait List, also as always, you still must check at WCLab@lagcc.cuny.edu fifteen minutes before the session time. After the first ten minutes of the period, you’ll get an email either inviting you to an appointment or telling you that all the appointments are full and that you should sign up for a later time.
- Be sure you know your teacher’s first and last name so that your tutor can send a session report to the right person.
- Whenever possible, you should bring a copy of the specific assignment to be worked on.
3. Can I see the same tutor each time I come to the Writing Center?
You are welcome to see the same tutor each time you come; just ask for your tutor's schedule and choose their name from the drop-down menu on the appointment page. If you don’t see the tutor’s name there and you’re sure they are on duty, you can request them in your check-in email. If you don’t get that tutor, either the tutor was not on duty or already had a student.
4. How many times can I come to the Writing Center?
You may come to the Writing Center up to three times per week, one session per day.
5. What will my tutoring sessions be like?
Your session will be face-to-face on Zoom and is one period long, unless you finish early (don’t count on it!) Be sure to have any work you want to show your tutor ready; they will show you how to share it on screen if you haven’t done so before.
6. What can I expect at the Writing Center?
You can expect to meet a tutor who will help you with any aspect of any stage of any kind of writing, as much as time permits in a session.
You can expect to meet a person who is friendly, patient and knowledgeable, to decide with you what you need to learn in order to improve your writing, and then to work with you to learn what you need to learn to make those changes. You can expect this person, and the Writing Center, to keep working with you for as long as you need, whether that means one session, one week, one semester, or your whole time at LaGuardia.
Don’t expect your tutor to get through everything in one session, especially if you have a long paper or a paper with lots of marks by your teacher. Papers often take more than one session, so the sooner you come in for tutoring, the more tutoring sessions you’ll be able to apply to any project you’re working on.
Also don’t expect to get your papers corrected or proofread, which is called editing. (You may not know this, but it is illegal for tutors to edit papers.) The Writing Center works directly with you to help you improve as a writer.
If you haven’t started your paper:
-Your tutor will help you decide what approach to your paper would be interesting to you and fulfill the requirements of your assignment.
-Your tutor will help you plan out your paper before you start, choosing among several different planning techniques to find an approach that’s comfortable for you;
--Your tutor can help you decide what kinds of sources you’ll need to find and read (if your assignment calls for them).
Be sure to bring the assignment itself with you!
If your paper is in progress:
If you come to work on a paper that has not been marked and graded by your teacher, or that is partly done, there are several things your tutor can and cannot do. As already mentioned, a tutor may not proofread and edit the whole paper. But there is a great deal your tutor can do to help you:
-Your tutor can help you find a focus, find ideas, and begin to write your paper;
-Your tutor can help you with your paper’s thesis, organization and development; if you’ve already started, your tutor will discuss with you whether you’re on the right track and how to continue.
-Your tutor can help you with research techniques, from integrating sources to doing documentation.
-Your tutor can let you know if you are already making grammar errors of one type or another.
If your unmarked paper is finished:
-Your tutor can read through the whole paper in one or more sessions, time permitting, and give you a specific evaluation of the strengths and weaknesses in your paper; (but your tutor cannot comment on what grade your paper might receive);
-Your tutor can carefully review and critique your paper’s thesis, organization and development
-Your tutor can point out examples of error patterns in your paper and can help you correct the beginning of the paper, to help you understand what to look for in the rest of the paper;
-Your tutor can choose from extensive Writing Center materials to help you learn more about the kinds of errors in your paper.
If your paper is marked:
If you come in to revise a paper that has been marked and graded, your tutor can go over it line by line and error by error with you, in one or more sessions. The tutor will also decide what materials and tasks to work on with him/her, for as many sessions as you need.
If you just want to work on a specific aspect of writing, like run-on sentences or writing an introduction, not a paper:
Your tutor will congratulate you on your intelligence and commitment! Then your tutor will give you techniques and practice to improve any aspect of writing you want to improve. Often students turn the aspect of writing that gave them the most trouble into the aspect of writing that they’re best at!
- What doesn’t the Writing Center do?
In our communications about the Writing Center we like to emphasize what kinds of writing support the Center offers, which includes almost everything. But there are exceptions, and although they are few, here is a list of what we do not offer:
- We do not proofread or correct papers -- editing. We help students to proofread and correct papers – tutoring.
- We do not work on the content information of papers, for instance, sociology theories or chemistry formulas. Tutors offer skilled guidance in writing, not every kind of information a paper might present.
- We cannot look at tests of any kind. It is almost impossible to discuss aspects of writing without having impact on content, which is too likely to constitute academic fraud.
- Students cannot drop papers off for tutors to review. Tutoring is a face-to-face interaction; moreover, tutors do not have scheduled time to perform such a function in their work day.
- We do not work on grievance statements against members of the LaGuardia community, i.e. teachers or staff. We cannot be involved in an adversarial process against colleagues.
- We do not comment on the specific grades papers have received or might receive.
8. Will my professor know if I attend the Writing Center?
Each time you come to the Writing Center your tutor will send a brief report of your attendance to your teacher.
So whether it's how to get started on a research paper project, or how to revise a marked essay, or how to deal with any specific aspect of writing, the Writing Center's staff of friendly, skilled, trained tutors can help you do better.
We'll see you soon!