Writing Center Policies

  • All appointments in The Writing Center are ONLINE at this time and are available in 30-minute increments. 
  • TWC Consultants can help students with reading, writing, critical thinking, researching, documenting sources, avoiding plagiarism, proofreading and editing strategies, and ESL-specific needs in any course across the curriculum. Consultants can also assist with personal statements and internship essays as students begin or continue their graduate and professional school application process. (Important note: consultants do not edit students' work for them, but they will help students learn to improve their skills by walking them through a series of targeted strategies aimed at keeping the student in a place of active decision making.)
  • Appointments are available to be booked 30 minutes or more in advance. At this time, no last-minute appointments are available.
  • During the first 11 weeks of the semester, students may make two, half-hour appointments per day & four max per week. These appointments may not be back-to-back. To request a second appointment in a day (not back-to-back), students must ask the consultant during the first appointment.  During the first 11 weeks, the booking window is 2 weeks in advance. During the final four weeks of each semester, these limits are tightened to one half-hour appointment per day and two half-hour appointments max per week, and a one-week booking window is followed.
  • Students arriving 5 minutes late to online sessions will be marked as "missed." Missed appointments will lead to forfeiture of the remainder of the original appointment and any options for a second appointment in the same day. At any point in the semester, three missed appointments will lead to automatic account deactivation; in that case, contact TWC Director, Cindy Spires, at spirescc@udmercy.edu to schedule a virtual meeting to discuss. During the final four weeks of the term, accounts disabled due to excessive missed appointments will not be re-enabled.
  • Students are responsible for keeping track of their appointment dates and times. TWC appointments begin on time and end at the 25-minute mark. Brief appointments are not available at this time.
  • Because TWC is using an online appointment system that is video-, audio- and text-enabled, students should expect to activate their web cameras and microphones upon entering sessions. Refresh the browser once the video/audio has been activated, and if technical issues arise during the session you can either log out & back in again, try another browser, or restart your home modem. It is advised that students minimize open browser windows when using our online system in order to minimize technical difficulties. Students are discouraged from attempting to use a mobile device with our system as well; the use of a laptop or desktop is necessary with our system.
  • In the case of WIFI issues on the part of the student or the consultant, or if the software system malfunctions leaving the session incomplete, the student is expected to reschedule the appointment. TWC's protocol for audio/video issues is to try for a maximum of 5 minutes to make it work and then default to text-only. In the case of system malfunction where text-only can't be employed, if the session does not successfully connect the student and consultant within the first 5 minutes of the scheduled session, the student should plan to reschedule the appointment. The Writing Center is not responsible for WIFI or system malfunctions that derail sessions.
  • Appointments are subject to being moved between consultants (for the same time slot) at the TWC Director's discretion.  In the case of an emergency cancellation, students will be contacted by phone or email to reschedule. Having an accurate phone number and email in your account profile with TWC will ensure timely communications.
  • Proof of attendance for online appointments with TWC comes in the form of screen shots taken by you, the student, during the final minutes of each online session.  At the end of the session, the student and consultant should exchange a TEXT CHAT that will show a time stamp; that screen shot should then be provided by the student directly to his or her faculty.  Faculty are aware that TWC considers a complete session to last 25 out of the 30 minutes of the session.  Students can also use the email confirmation that is sent out after each appointment as proof of attendance. Students are responsible for providing proof of attendance to their professors. Any student found to be academically dishonest in the use of proof of attendance will lose TWC privileges.
  • If students are receiving class credit for a visit with TWC, the session must be about a project for that class. 
  • During sessions, students should remain engaged and not on other programs, tasks or devices.  Students who walk away from sessions to do other tasks while on a video conference with the consultant or who are otherwise disengaged will lose TWC privileges.
  • TWC sessions are for matriculated students at University of Detroit Mercy. 
  • Questions should be directed to The Writing Center Director, Cindy Spires, at spirescc@udmercy.edu.

 

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    How Writing Center sessions work

    In-person appointments: Not available at this time.

    Online Appointments: Students are actively engaged for 30 minutes with the consultant. The student is able to paste a draft into our online program and the consultant and student will be able to use video/audio as well as instant message one another about ways to improve the draft. How to prepare: Have a digital copy of your draft and necessary materials (assignment sheet/rubric, textbook, etc.) with you to refer to during the session.

    To schedule an online appointment, visit: The Writing Center's Scheduling Website

    The Writing Center does not provide "drop off" services — all sessions are active engagements between the student and the consultant.

    For questions regarding our services, email The Writing Center Director Cindy Spires at spirescc@udmercy.edu.