Students come to Dalhousie and King’s ready to learn but not always prepared for the demands of university. Writing can be a daunting task—in any field. And yet writing competency is an essential ingredient in student academic success. In time it will allow new employees to advance in their careers. One way to improve writing skills is through academic classes; another way is to use the services of the Writing Centre.
The Writing Cetre offers the following services for faculty to assist in improving student writing|:
Quick class visits
Staff members drop into your class for a five-minute "This is what we can do for you at the Writing Centre" presentation. Students can ask questions, and we can give them our locations and schedules. This quick visit might be your first opportunity to start the discussion on writing in your discipline in your class.
Please contact Dr. Margie Clow Bohan at email@example.com. If you provide several convenient times and the location of your class, we will find a staff member to attend. This introduction to the Writing Centre need only take 5-10 minutes of your class time.
Longer in-class visits and workshops
Students can benefit from 30-60 minute sessions covering topics of your choice. Often, we go over specific documents such as lit reviews or aspects of a research paper. Several tutors can attend review workshops to assist you in directing a review of paper drafts.
Each year, a number of professors establish a tie with Writing Centre advisors or writing tutors from their fields. While tutors end up doing a variety of things for the students, these duties might include:
- meeting individually with your students
- giving short in-class presentations
- offering online comments on student papers. (They don’t evaluate and they don’t replace teaching assistants. Their work is primarily focused on the writing, not the subject content.)
Sometimes professors find it beneficial to link particular students with a tutor for a series of appointments to cover areas of deficiency or encourage a mentor-student relationship. Often professors provide the Centre with assignment guidelines if they are sending a number (or all of) the students over for help. In addition, professors must give the Centre permission to help students with writing take-home exams if the professors think the student requires the assistance. (Without permission, we don't work with take-homes.)
While many professors are very aware of pedagogical practices for improving student writing, some may want to better understand writing issues. Sample topics may include:
- increasing the writing content of a course
- including writing as a component in evaluative rubrics
- accommodating English Second Language students
Our new online Resource Guide (http://guides.library.dal.ca/writingcentre) offers information on writing resources including annotated writing models from a number of disciplines. (The site is an on-going project. If you would like to contribute any general or discipline-specific information on writing, please send it along.)
Contact us for more information
The Writing Centre staff members have strong backgrounds in academic writing and writing-in-the-disciplines approaches to the teaching of writing. Contact Dr Margie Bohan at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (902) 494.3379 for more information.
Please Include This Writing Centre Information in Your Syllabus:
Dalhousie Writing Centre
Writing expectations at university are higher than you will have experienced at high school (or if you are entering a master's or PhD program, the expectations are higher than at lower levels). The Writing Centre is a Student Service academic unit that supports your writing development. Make an appointment to discuss your writing. Learning more about the writing process and discipline-specific practices and conventions will allow you to adapt more easily to your field of study.
Dalhousie Writing Centre Main Location (Learning Commons, Main Floor)
Monday & Tuesday 10-7
Wednesday & Thursday 10-9
Sexton (Room A108)
Wednesday 6-9 pm
Friday 9 am - 12 pm
Black Student Advising (4th Floor SUB)
Weldon Law Library (Basement – Room 114 F)
Book an appointment:
Email email@example.com or call 494-1963 or go to the Dalhousie homepage, log on to MyDal, and select the “Learning Resources” tab. You’ll see the “Writing Centre” BOOK AN APPOINTMENT button.