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Frequently Asked Questions
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Related Links
University of Puerto Rico, English Department
The Purdue Online Writing Lab
Texas A&M University Writing Center
University of Winsconsin-Madison Writing Center
Michigan State University Writing Center
 
 
Who comes to the EWC?
Everyone! At the EWC we work with undergraduate and graduate students from all disciplines. We tutor undergraduate students who want help with English coursework, graduate students who want help with theses or professional papers, students of all levels who want help with résumés, personal statements and/or other English documents. We also welcome students interested in conversational English practice sessions.
 
When can I come in?
The English Writing Center (General Library, Room B-107) is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Peer tutors, both graduate and undergraduate, are available during these times. In order for us to be able to assist you, you must check in at the EWC no later than 4:10 p.m.
 
We suggest you visit us at least 2 days before your due date, and that you set aside 20-30 minutes for each tutoring session. Why? Because good writing takes time! Give yourself enough time to brainstorm, write, revise, and rewrite. You may visit us more than once for the same writing project.
 
Do I need an appointment?
Generally, no appointment is necessary. For our regular 20-30 minute tutoring sessions we receive students on a first come, first served basis. However, we encourage you to arrive with enough time to take advantage of the services and to wait your turn if we are busy.
Graduate students and advanced undergraduates working on long projects (e.g., theses, mini-theses, publications, etc.) may request longer tutoring sessions of up to one hour. These sessions are scheduled by appointment and are conducted by our graduate tutors.
 
How do I make an appointment?
When requesting your appointment, make sure to provide the following information:

♦   Major

♦   Contact information (email and telephone)

♦   Type of document (thesis chapter, proposal, publication, etc.)

♦   The days and times when you are available for an hour long appointment

♦   Tutor preference (applicable especially to those who have already begun working on a document with a particular tutor and would like to continue working with him or her)

What should I bring to a tutoring session?
In the case of written projects you are expected to bring a double-spaced print out of your draft or outline. We will also accept handwritten documents as long as they are legible. It is important that you come to the session having a clear idea of the guidelines of the assignment, the type of paper or document you are writing, and the documentation style (MLA, APA, GSA, etc.), if any, required by your audience. In the case of conversational English sessions or “speaking logs” you are required to bring a list of topics or prompts to get the conversation started.
 
What should I expect during my visit?

♦   Written assignments or documents

Our tutoring sessions are 20-30 minutes long depending on the length of your document and the concerns you would like to address. The peer tutor will begin by inquiring about the purpose of your visit and the overall purpose of your project. Considering your specific needs, the tutor will proceed to guide and support you in the process of reading, revising and polishing your manuscript.

Sometimes getting started is the hardest part of writing. We understand! That’s why peer tutors at the EWC are also available to help you brainstorm or outline your assignment. All we ask is that you arrive with a clear idea of the guidelines for the assignment, the type of paper or document you are writing, and the documentation style (MLA, APA, GSA, etc), if any, required.

♦   Conversational English sessions or speaking logs

Speaking logs are 15-20 minute long. At the beginning of the session the tutor will request your list of topics or prompts (for example: ordering food at a restaurant, conducting a phone survey, attending a job interview, etc.). Based on these the tutor will proceed to engage you in conversation in English, providing support and translation when needed.

Do EWC tutors proofread papers?
One of the goals of the English Writing Center is to help you become better at proofreading your own work. We realize that the best way to do this is to guide and encourage you, not to do the work for you. We will read your work with you, help you spot mistakes, and give you pointers on the best way to avoid the mistake in the future.
 
Will visiting the EWC help me earn an A on my paper?
At the EWC, our priority is to help you become a better writer. We want to guide you through better organization, composition and editing of your own work. While we, like you, hope that improved writing skills will enhance your academic performance, we cannot promise that one or several visits to the EWC will guarantee any particular grade.
 
Can I send my paper with a friend?
No! Because we are a peer tutoring Center (not a professional editing service), our tutors need you, the author, present and engaged during the session. We will provide information, guidance, support and encouragement to help you improve your own writing.
 
What else does the EWC offer?
In addition to our supportive and knowledgeable peer tutors, the EWC has a wealth of resources including dictionaries, thesauruses, writing handbooks, interview prompts, writing reference materials and mini-lessons on everything from writing a strong thesis statement to commonly confused or misspelled words. Feel free to drop by to peruse our collection or visit our blog, Better Writers, at ewcuprm.weebly.com for a sample of materials.

We also offer writing workshops to the UPRM community, which are free and open to all. For upcoming workshop dates visit us at ewcuprm.weebly.comand www.facebook.com/ewcuprm.