A Typical Session Q&A
What should I bring?
Bring with you the assignment sheet directions and any materials you are using in your writing process. If you would like us to go over your paper draft with you, please bring a printed copy. We do have a printer in the Writing Pad for your convenience.
How long do sessions last?
Sessions can last up to 50 minutes.
What can you help me do?
A Writing Pad consultant will work with you one-to-one to determine an appropriate focus for the session. We can help you:
- Review assignment directions
- Explore and choose a topic
- Develop a thesis statement
- Generate ideas
- Organize notes and outlines
- Revise content of initial drafts
- Identify and correct grammatical or mechanical errors
- Format according to MLA, APA, or other style guidelines
Our consultants tend to focus on larger-level issues such as ideas, argument, and organization before addressing sentence-level issues such as word choice, grammar, punctuation, and citations. This allows writers to look at the big picture first and then narrow that focus along the way.
What happens during a typical session?
You can think of Writing Pad consultants as interested audience members. We will listen, read carefully, ask questions, make observations, and provide guidance along the way. To assist with this interactive process, we ask all writers to read their draft aloud (or have the consultants read it aloud).
We empower you to take control of your writing. Therefore, although we might take notes on a separate sheet of paper, we will not mark up or make changes to your draft. Although we might make suggestions or provide options for how to tackle a particular issue, we will not tell you what to do. And while we are prepared to ask the types of questions that will allow you to consider and articulate your own thoughts and ideas, we will not be the ones to provide all the answers. The writing process can be a wonderful journey filled with excitement and discovery, and we take pleasure in making sure you remain in the driver's seat during the ride.
At what point should I come in?
We encourage writers to come early on in the writing process. Planning ahead allows you the time to effectively apply the feedback received during a session. It also gives you the option of returning for further assistance prior to the due date. That said, it's never too late to come in.
Is there a limit to the number of sessions I can set up?
There is a limit of 1 session per day.
Why won't you proofread or
fix my paper?
If we made changes or corrections for you, you wouldn't learn as much and we wouldn't be helping you grow as a writer. Writing Pad consultants will not edit or proofread your paper; however, we are more than happy to teach you how to do this yourself.
Will my instructor know that I've visited the Writing Pad?
Sessions at the Writing Pad remain confidential unless you specifically ask us to email your instructor.