Writing is something all college students will have to do for most of their classes. That’s why PSU has a Writing Center, which is designed to help students at any writing level, and at any stage in the writing process.
How do you know if you should go to the Writing Center? Well, everyone should go! Whether you’re struggling with grammar, don’t know how to write a particular assignment for a class or want feedback on a scholarship essay, the Writing Center can help.
One unique thing about PSU’s Writing Center is that all consultants have earned or are working toward their Master’s in Writing or English, and many also teach writing classes. There’s even an ESL specialist and dedicated graduate student drop-in hours.
Here’s what you should do to get the most out of your visit.
Step 1: Decide what you want to get out of your session.
When you go into your session, your consultant will ask you what you want to get out of it and will tailor their feedback accordingly. Make sure you have a few specific questions or issues in mind.
Have a tricky essay assignment and don’t know where to start? They can help you brainstorm and write an outline. Finished your paper but think you didn’t use commas correctly? Let your consultant know, and they can point out recurring issues and show you how to fix them.
Step 2: Schedule an appointment or visit drop-in hours.
The best way to meet with a consultant is to schedule an appointment online. Appointments can be either a half-hour or an hour long.
If scheduling an appointment won’t work for you, stop in during drop-in hours. Remember to show up early to sign in because drop-in hours fill up fast. The Writing Center (located in 188 Cramer Hall) holds drop-in hours Monday through Friday from 12 to 2 pm.
You can also stop by the Writing Center Outpost on the second floor of the PSU Library. Outpost hours are from 9 am to 12 pm.
Step 3: Come prepared.
Print out two copies of your paper, so both you and your consultant can easily read it. Make sure to also bring in your assignment sheet. Time is limited, so if your paper is long, have a couple of sections you want to focus on, in addition to some specific questions.
Step 4: Become a better writer!
Remember that Writing Center consultants will not “fix” your paper for you. They won’t copy edit your writing, but will point out things you can improve and give you the tools and advice to do it yourself. This means you shouldn’t bring in an assignment an hour before it’s due—you won’t have enough time to work on it before turning it in.
Once you leave your session, revise your work! Consultants even suggest you bring in the same assignment multiple times throughout the writing process. That way, you can really see your growth.
No matter your skill level, it can be helpful to get feedback on your writing, especially if it is from someone experienced.
Don’t hesitate to visit the Writing Center!