Services We Provide for Faculty

Dear Faculty,

We are thrilled when faculty recommend the Writing Center to their students, and we do our best to help them. In case you are not familiar with our services, here is a description of a typical writing consultation session:

  • The consultant greets the student and inquires about the class, the instructor, and the assignment. The consultant reads the assignment sheet if possible.
  • The consultant asks the student what issues or questions are a priority to him or her.
  • The consultant addresses the strengths and weaknesses of the essay from global to local issues. Global issues include the topic, overall argument, and organization of the essay. Local issues include documentation, sentence structure, grammar, and punctuation.
  • The consultant and student discuss revision strategies and goals to address the areas for improvement.

The Writing Center is happy to offer many services for faculty who assign writing in their classes.

Assignment Consultations

In an assignment consultation, the Writing Center Coordinator will review your writing assignment instructions and provide suggestions to make your assignment more clear, comprehensive, and effective. We can also review rubrics, handouts, and any other component of the writing assignments you use in your classes. We can help you start from scratch, or proofread for grammar before posting. Contact the Writing Center Coordinator to request a consultation: 

Classroom Drop-In Visits

A Writing Center consultant will happily visit your class and give a 5- to 10-minute description of the Writing Center services. If you wish, we can bring our appointment book for students who would like to make an appointment. We will work around your schedule; let us know what is convenient to you. A consultant can also visit your class in order to present on a specific aspect of writing or documentation, such as how to respond to essay exam questions or proper use of MLA citation style.Contact the Writing Center Coordinator to request a consultation:   

Documentation Workshops

If you feel your students would benefit from a refresher workshop on APA, Chicago, or MLA style as they begin a research project, we will plan and conduct one or two sessions for your students outside of your normal class time. We have offered out-of-class Chicago workshops in the past, and the feedback from the instructor and the students has been positive. Contact the Writing Center Coordinator to request a consultation:   

Embedded Blackboard Consulting

Faculty can request to add an embedded Writing Center consultant in their Blackboard for any course.

Most professors may prefer a simple Q and A forum, but we are open to any possibility that could enhance your students’ experiences with writing!

Some examples of activities and roles an embedded consultant could undertake:

  • Question and answer discussion board forums
  • Individual or group consultations
  • Visiting expert/guest speaker (e.g. presentation on a writing topic or assignment)
  • Structured learning activity (e.g. guided writing)
  • Peer review moderator
  • Interactive resource moderator (e.g. blog)
  • Exam preparation
  • Guided revision
  • Discussion leader/moderator for writing concerns
  • Grammar guide

How does it work?

Contact the Writing Center Coordinator to arrange for a writing consultant to be added to your course and to discuss your preferred method of embedded writing assistance. For example, an instructor could create a discussion board forum the consultant will monitor for writing questions. Your students can post writing questions to the forum, and when the consultant responds, the other members of the class will also be able to see the discussion (unless you choose to modify the audience—we’re flexible!). The consultant will subscribe to the forum (meaning she or he will be notified when a question is posted), and will respond promptly within a pre-established time frame. See the mock-up below.

Each instructor can decide whether to require students to use the embedded consulting service, and can control whether points are awarded for doing so. The consulting may be a one-time opportunity or a semester-long support service, and might be free-form or attached to a particular project or assignment.

While an embedded consultant is not a teaching assistant, we can make your job easier by offering on-the-spot help for students in need, so that you can focus on subject matter concerns.

Who are the consultants?

Only experienced and specially trained consultants will be permitted to act as embedded Blackboard tutors. Instructors may request a specific consultant, and every effort will be made to accommodate such a request. Training focuses on our guiding principles (such as constructive, personalized, prompt feedback), effective communication in the online environment (such as making opportunities for contributions from students) and expected characteristics of online consultants (such as sound pedagogy).

Contact the Writing Center Coordinator to request a consultation:   


We have several dozen handouts on topics such as the parts of an essay, grammar and punctuation, documentation of sources, writing an annotated bibliography, and writing essay exams and short-answer essay questions.  Rather than creating a handout from scratch, you can modify one of ours. The handouts are available on our home page or in the Writing Center, D-201.

Posters for Blackboard, Classrooms, and Office Doors

We have posters advertising the Writing Center that you can post to Blackboard, hang on your office door, or display in your classroom. We also have bookmark-style and business card-style publicity materials that you can distribute to your students. 

Student Visit Verification

If you would like notice when your students visit the Writing Center, please contact us to discuss various options for verifying students’ attendance. You may wish to require a session or offer students extra credit for visiting; we can provide verification when they do. We have a lot of ideas for incentivizing and encouraging visits to the Writing Center that we will be happy to share with you.

Studio Sessions

Studio Sessions are requested by faculty and are attached to a particular course or class. The instructor and Writing Center Coordinator collaboratively build a schedule of Studio Sessions relating to the particular topic or assignment at hand. During a Studio Session, a small group of students meets with a highly qualified Writing Center consultant to work on their writing assignment. Studio Sessions often function as focused group consulting, wherein a group of writers can work to create and improve excellent writing for their topic or assignment. A professor may require students to attend one or more Studio Session throughout the semester, or they may be optional. Studio Sessions may be especially helpful for students taking courses that require academic writing, but do not carry a writing pre-requisite.  Contact the Writing Center Coordinator to request a consultation:   

Syllabus Statement

We have developed a statement that you can copy or modify for inclusion in your syllabus, essay assignments, or other course documents. Download the syllabus statement here.


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