We offer three options for getting help with writing, as we expand our teleconferencing capacity to enable us to provide continuity of instructional services, while following the CDC’s recommended practices for higher education for low-risk contact during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as guidance from TCU’s Connected Campus Council. We limit Zoom appointments to one hour, during which a consultant and writer can read and respond to about ten or twelve pages. We also limit the time a consultant may spend on an online (OWL) submission from an undergraduate student to one hour, which means the student should emphasize his or her specific concerns (in order of priority) in the e-mail message that accompanies a submission. A consultant will read as much of the paper as possible in an hour and comment on issues he or she detects, but not attempt to catch or comment on every error or issue. Instead, the consultant will focus on issues he or she and the student deem most important. If either Zoom or OWL options are not feasible, please phone us at 817-257-7221 to inquire about an in-person visit. Be advised that face-to-face tutorials will require TCU-mandated face coverings, and that your tutor may use other means of personal protection equipment.
The center’s consultants are not proofreaders or editors. We provide feedback on all aspects of writing, including structure, content, style, and sentence-level concerns. We tend to identify both strengths and weaknesses in a student’s work. If we notice patterns of error, we will attempt to teach a student how to avoid the error and we expect him or her to make any necessary corrections. We may do some editing in order to demonstrate ways students can revise particular passages. The aim of such editing is not to perfect the paper but to teach students long-term lessons about writing.
Because of our emphasis on teaching rather than editing, we limit work with a student to three tutorials on a particular assignment or text, whether online or face-to-face. We impose this limit because our objective is not to produce a “perfect” text, but to increase the writing expertise of the student. We expect the student to learn from these sessions, whether electronic or face to face, and apply what they learn not only to the remainder of the current text but also to future texts. The three-tutorial limitation does not apply to sessions involving brainstorming, discussions of assignments, or sessions involving general principles of citation, writing, or rhetoric.
Policies for Faculty
If faculty require (or heavily encourage) students to visit us, please suggest they make a Zoom appointment well in advance of the due date of a paper or project. Also, please contact the director, Dr. Steve Sherwood, (firstname.lastname@example.org) to be sure we have sufficient openings in our tutoring schedule to accommodate your students. Particularly during mid-terms and the final two weeks of the semester, the center is booked solid. During those times, we cannot accept drop-in traffic or respond to online submissions as quickly as we’d like.
Faculty may wish to use our Syllabus Statement in course preparations:
The William L. Adams Center for Writing is an academic service available to all TCU students. Writing specialists and peer tutors are available for one-on-one tutorials from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday in Reed Hall, Suite 419. Online tutorials are also available. To make an appointment or to access the online tutorial service, please visit the Center for Writing web site at http://www.wrt.tcu.edu/ for further information.
We will help students and faculty with single-document written components of ePortfolios for the Academy of Tomorrow on an individual basis; staffing limitations do not permit us to work with large groups or classes at this time.