Five ways to get the most out of your tutoring session

We’ve all been there: an assignment is due, there’s no plan for what to write, but the days start coming and they don’t stop coming. It’s decided that to make sure this assignment goes smoothly, we schedule a meeting with the writing center to double-check our work. However, just showing up with a deadline may not be the best way to get the most effective tutoring session.

Here we’ll go over five things you can do to get the most out of a tutoring session.

1) Making an account with My Writing Center Online.

Whether you are a walk-in or making an appointment, you will need to make an account with the scheduling program that the writing center uses, Creating an account is simple: On, you select the “Create Account” option above the log-in bars. From there all you will need is your Wayne State email address and student ID (the one that’s two letters and four numbers). 

2) Making sure you have the materials.

One of the most important things to do before your appointment with a tutor is writing down some ideas and materials that can be used during the tutoring session. There are a handful of things that a tutor may ask about that you can have handy, such as:

  • An assignment prompts
  • Any directions you might want to take with the assignment
  • In the case of research papers, having some of the research at hand
  • Having a list of any specific areas you want to strengthen in your writing

3) Making an appointment vs. walking in.

We love walk-ins but we definitely encourage you to schedule an appointment. Here’s why:

  • Walking in is the most immediate but you’ll be less in control of who you get to work with.
  • Scheduling ahead of time gives you the option to choose a tutor who might specialize in the kind of assignment or writing you’re doing.
  • Scheduling ahead of time ensures that you will meet with a tutor. Walk-ins might not be available when you are.
  • Scheduling ahead of time can give you the option of working with a tutor online instead of in person.
  • Scheduling ahead of time allows you to upload your paper/any relevant documents to the appointment program so it’s ready as soon as your appointment starts.

4) Reading aloud and why you should be ready to do it.

Online or in-person, you will probably be asked by your tutor to read some of your project aloud. This is for a couple of reasons:

  • Reading aloud is a great way for you to find anything that does not follow the flow you had in mind when you wrote the paper. 
  • Even if you’re an avid read-aloud-er, taking a step away from a piece of writing and then reading it aloud later can really make a difference in how you experience that writing.

5) Brainstorming and other parts of the writing process.

The Writing Center focuses on academic writing and all parts of the writing process, especially brainstorming. If you’re feeling like you don’t know where to start with an upcoming paper, come in and we can work with you through the brainstorming and outlining process or even point you toward library resources that can best assist you with the research process.

By Alex Heath

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