Make the Most of Your Writing Conference

Writing Consultants are trained to make comments and suggestions to help formulate and elaborate ideas. They will address the parts of your piece of writing which necessitate the most guidance first. The Consultants will be most concerned with aspects of writing such as organization, formulation of a strong thesis, style, and writing to the correct audience.

  • Writers should bring a copy of the assignment, plus any notes or partial drafts, to the conference. Writers should take notes and expect an interactive session, not silent proofreading or a lecture.
  • Writers should not expect that a conference at the Writing Center is equal to a trip to the grammatical fix-it shop. Writers may expect help with grammar and punctuation after issues of addressing the assignment and finding focus have been addressed, unless a professor specfically requests we work only with grammar, mechanics, or style.
  • The Consultants will not correct a paper. They will help writers self-identify repeated errors and learn to correct them.
  • Instruction on grammar and punctuation from a Writing Consultant may constitute handouts from Writer's Web or instruction on certain grammar and punctuation problems.
  • Writers also should not expect the Consultant to send them away from the conference with a perfect paper in hand. Remember, there is no such thing as a perfect piece of writing!
  • The Consultant should always offer to schedule another conference with a student if the student desires more feedback.
  • Consultants will send a conference summary to the writer's faculty member, unless a writer opts out.