The Ott Memorial Writing Center is staffed by undergraduate and graduate students who go through extensive training and a competitive selection process. Our tutors are not only strong writers, they are also empathetic listeners and creative problem solvers. While many of our tutors are English and education majors, we are eager to continue building a staff of tutors from the full range of university majors. Our current staff of tutors includes students from accounting, ADPR, biological sciences, education, English, finance, French, history, psychology, political science, sociology, and Spanish.
In addition to providing an important service to the university, working as a tutor can be a powerful educational experience for students and a valuable addition to their resume. Tutors further develop their oral and written communication skills by learning to work collaboratively with others to provide constructive criticism on a piece of writing. They often take on leadership roles--designing and leading workshops for writers, conducting informational outreaches in classes, developing publicity--and conduct research that they present at national and international conferences.
To become a tutor, undergraduate students must enroll in English 4230: Writing Center Theory, Research and Practice, a 4-credit course that involves 15 hours of shadowing experienced tutors; the course is offered every spring. Ideally, students take the course in their sophomore (or even their first) year in order to allow them several semesters on staff. We also happily welcome juniors.
If you know of a student you believe has the communication and interpersonal skills to become a writing center tutor, please encourage them to check out the Join Our Staff link on our web page. If you share the student's name with us via email, we will contact the student about our upcoming information sessions. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact the Director, Dr. Rebecca Nowacek. Thanks for your help in recruiting a strong staff of peer tutors.