Frequently Asked Questions 2021-08-24T19:04:42-04:00

Frequently Asked Questions

This page includes answers to commonly asked questions about the University Writing Center and our services. If your question isn’t addressed below, please email us at uwc@ucf.edu or give us a call at 407-823-2197.

About the University Writing Center

What does the University Writing Center do? 2021-08-24T16:25:53-04:00

The University Writing Center is a campus resource that offers free individual and small-group consultations to UCF community members, for any writing in any situation. Our purpose is not to “fix” papers. Instead, we provide a collaborative environment that creates opportunities to support writers’ learning to help them to better understand and navigate complex situations for writing, both in and outside the University.

Who can use your services? 2021-08-24T16:27:50-04:00

The UWC is open to all UCF students, faculty and staff. We’re happy to work with writers on any kind of writing project—whether it’s for school, work, a campus organization, personal reasons, or any other reason—and with writers who feel they are struggling on a particular project, writers who are feeling confident but want a reader’s perspective, or anywhere in between.

UCF alumni are welcome to schedule up to six consultations on career-related documents such as resumes, personal statements, or test preparation. If you are enrolled in a course at another institution, please use that institution’s writing center services.

Will you edit my paper for me if I send it to you? 2021-08-24T16:38:11-04:00

While the UWC is not a proofreading service, our goal is to help writers learn long-term strategies and skills they can apply to current and future writing projects. As such, writers need to schedule a consultation so our consultants can give you personalized feedback to support your writing goals.

Who are the consultants who work in the UWC? 2021-08-24T16:42:20-04:00

Our peer consultants (also sometimes called writing tutors) are UCF graduate and undergraduate students, all of whom take a comprehensive three-credit course, “Theory & Practice of Tutoring Writing,” and participate in ongoing professional development throughout their time at the UWC so they can be prepared to support you and your writing. These consultants are writers and trained collaborators ready to work with you to learn more about your writing, help you reach your goals, and provide an audience for your in-progress drafts.

Why should I meet with a writing consultant? 2021-08-24T16:43:32-04:00

Meeting with a peer consultant is a great way to get feedback on your writing and discuss any questions you might have. These consultations can help you better understand assignment requirements, develop your ideas, identify and address key aspects of your writing that you want to revise, learn to cite and document sources, and practice strategies for proofreading and editing. Peer consultants can provide you feedback and support at any stage of your writing process.

How can I contact the UWC? 2021-08-24T16:48:45-04:00

You can email us at uwc@ucf.edu or call our office at 407-823-2197 during our hours of operation.

What are your hours? 2021-08-24T17:15:01-04:00

To view our hours for the current semester, please visit our “About” page.

Where are you located? 2021-08-24T17:16:13-04:00

The main UWC office can be found on the first floor of Trevor Colbourn Hall in TCH 109.

Consultations and Scheduling

What is a typical consultation like? 2021-08-24T17:19:09-04:00

At the beginning of your appointment time, you’ll come to the UWC and sign in (or, if you’re having an online consultation, you’ll log into the Zoom meeting room via the link the consultant sends to your Knightsmail five minutes before the appointment start time). If you haven’t worked with a consultant on this writing task before, they will probably begin by asking you a number of questions: about your assignment requirements, about what you’ve done so far, and about what questions or concerns you have, or what specific parts of your paper you want to focus on. The tutor wants to have a better understanding of what you’re working on, and gather information that will help the two of you decide what to prioritize during the consultation. You won’t be able to discuss all aspects of your writing in 30-45 minutes, so they may recommend a few key issues to focus on. After that, the tutor might read part of your paper aloud, or ask you to read it. You’ll discuss key issues, and the consultant might have you do some revising during the consultation so you can practice the strategies you’re talking about. At the end of the consultation, you’ll log out, and your tutor will send you an email that will recap what you did during the session and serve as your “to-do” list for continuing to revise after you leave.

Are consultations available in-person or online? 2021-08-24T17:22:06-04:00

We are happy to offer availability for both in-person and online sessions! In-person sessions are conducted in our main offices in Trevor Colbourn Hall 109, or at the Hitt Library. Online sessions are conducted via Zoom. To read more, see our pages on In Person and Online sessions.

How long does a consultation last? 2021-08-24T17:17:45-04:00

Appointments are for 45 minutes. If you’re working on a big project and would like feedback on multiple elements, be sure to allow enough time to have multiple consultations (on different days) for big writing projects. You probably won’t be able to discuss all aspects of your writing in just one 30-45 minute session.

How can I schedule an appointment? 2021-08-24T17:24:15-04:00

You can make an appointment through our online scheduler or by giving us a call at 407- 823-2197. Appointments must be scheduled at least 1 hour in advance.

How many appointments can I make? 2021-08-24T17:26:43-04:00

To make our services available to as many writers as possible, we limit consultations (which includes both scheduled appointments and drop-ins) to once per day and up to three every seven days.

Can more than one person come to a consultation? 2021-08-24T18:27:14-04:00

Absolutely! This could be a consultation on a group assignment, or several classmates working on the same individual assignment may wish to visit as a group. To help ensure you get the most out of your session, please limit groups to no more than three or four students. For group projects, all group members should attend the session. Sending one member of the group to have a tutor “look over the paper” doesn’t facilitate learning for anyone in the group. 

What should I bring to my appointment? 2021-08-24T18:28:59-04:00

It will be helpful to bring your assignment requirements or any guidelines for writing, your work itself—everything you’ve done so far, including your notes, outline, sources—everything you’ve used to help you write and ideas, questions, and any specific learning goals you have.

My professor has required me to come to the UWC. How do I show proof of my visit? 2021-08-24T18:29:58-04:00

During your consultation, your consultant will record notes of the session, which they will then send to your Knightsmail after your appointment. This email serves as your official record of consultation.

Can I reschedule or cancel my appointment? 2021-08-24T18:33:35-04:00

Yes. If you cannot attend your appointment, please cancel it via our online scheduler or by giving us a call at 407-823-2197 at least 2 hours before your scheduled appointment so we can make that time available to others. After 3 missed appointments, you will only be able to visit as a drop-in for the rest of the semester.

Do I have to make an appointment or can I drop in? 2021-08-24T18:34:49-04:00

Drop-in writers are welcome, but can only be seen if we do not already have an appointment scheduled or if appointments do not show within 15 minutes of the scheduled time. For more information about our drop-in availability, please call our office at (407) 823-2197 during our operating hours.

Can I set up regular (e.g., weekly or biweekly) consultations? 2021-08-24T18:37:13-04:00

Absolutely! Recurring appointments may be scheduled by calling the UWC during our hours of operation 407-823-2197. You should also complete the following form and bring it with you/email it to us to schedule your appointments: Set Up Recurring Appointments

Technical Issues/Troubleshooting

How do I get the Zoom link for my online appointment? 2021-08-24T18:38:48-04:00

If you schedule an appointment for an online consultation, instructions will be emailed to your Knightsmail regarding how to access your Zoom meeting. The consultant will email you the link for the meeting about five minutes before the scheduled start time. If you have any questions, please email us at uwc@ucf.edu or give us a call at 407-823-2197.

Zoom isn’t working/I can’t access my online session! 2021-08-24T18:40:34-04:00

Please give us a call at 407-823-2197 so we can make sure you get connected with your consultant.

I can’t access the online scheduler (TutorTrac). Can you help me? 2021-08-24T18:43:10-04:00

If TutorTrac does not load on your computer, or if you encounter any technical difficulties in scheduling an appointment, please email us at uwc@ucf.edu or give us a call at 407-823-2197.

How do I get Zoom to work on my computer? 2021-08-24T18:47:42-04:00

Zoom meetings are best accessed by installing the Zoom application to your computer, phone, or tablet. If you choose to access your Zoom consultations via a web browser only such as Google Chrome, you will be required to sign in with a Zoom account. Please watch this video for more information on how to make online appointments and join Zoom meetings:

For Faculty

Many students in my class need assistance on a particular assignment. Can I send them all to the UWC? 2021-08-24T18:57:03-04:00

We discourage faculty from forcing students to use the UWC. Too often, students see required visits as a punishment for bad writing. If faculty choose to require or offer credit for writing center visits, then we recommend a wide window for scheduling appointments, staggering consultation deadlines for large classes, and guiding students on how to make the best use of their time with us. Since writing center visits help writers revise, we request that faculty send students to the UWC with writing that they intend to work on further, after the consultation.

If you would like to brainstorm with a UWC administrator about how to incorporate writing center sessions into your course, please email uwc@ucf.edu and we’ll be happy to collaborate with you!

If I send a student to the UWC, will I see an immediate improvement in their writing? 2021-08-24T18:58:27-04:00

Like the classroom, the UWC is a learning space. We don’t look at a writer’s current project only as an end in itself, but as a means to teach reading and writing strategies students can use throughout their lives. Students tend to find their experiences with the UWC are most effective when they make use of tutoring repeatedly over time. Recurring consultations encourage writers and tutors to focus not merely on “fixing” a single piece of writing, but on developing skills for the next writing task, and the next.

Can I refer a student to the UWC? 2021-08-24T18:54:52-04:00

Yes! You can begin the referral process by downloading our referral form. Please meet with your student to identify a few specific writing concerns for the student to focus on at the UWC. The student should then submit the form to Mariana Chao (Trevor Colbourn Hall 109 or Mariana.Chao@ucf.edu), who will help set up the student’s regular consultation time each week.

Other Writing Center Questions

English is not my first language. Can you help me with my writing? 2021-08-24T19:03:06-04:00

Yes. While the primary language of the UWC is English, multilingualism is highly valued. Some consultants may be able to assist with writing in other languages and we actively recruit multilingual tutors, but we cannot guarantee that a tutor proficient in a particular language will be available. If you have particular questions or concerns about some aspect of your writing in English, please bring those up to your consultant at the start of the session and they will be happy to work with you.

Can you help me with my scientific, technical, or other discipline-specific writing? 2021-08-24T19:05:17-04:00

Yes. Our peer writing consultants come from a wide variety of UCF majors and programs. While they might know the exact conventions of your discipline or have the background to immediately understand the content of your writing, they are trained and highly-skilled collaborators proficient in asking questions to learn more about your specific writing task and goals. Most writers find that having the opportunity to explain what they’re working on and think through it with someone else is valuable, even if the consultant doesn’t have the technical or discipline-specific background of, say, a faculty advisor or mentor. In fact, having to explain what you’re working on to someone else can be a good way of checking both your own understanding and thinking about how different audiences might understand and appreciate your work.

I’m a graduate student. Can I use the UWC? 2021-08-24T19:10:55-04:00

Of course! Many graduate students find UWC services to be especially helpful when they’re working on extended writing projects like theses or dissertations as well as when writing new genres like research proposals and articles. Consider setting up an appointment early in the writing process to get some initial feedback on your ideas, develop a writing plan, and generate questions you might ask a faculty mentor or advisor.

How do I apply to be a peer writing consultant? 2021-08-24T19:12:24-04:00

More information about being a peer writing consultant and our recruitment process can be found at this page. UCF undergraduates from all majors are encouraged to apply!

Who do I contact if I have a serious concern with how my session went or some other aspect of the UWC? 2021-08-24T19:14:11-04:00

If you have encountered behavior that goes against our policies and values or have any other concerns about the UWC or its services, please feel free to reach out directly to the UWC Director Debbie Weaver at Deborah.Weaver@ucf.edu or Assistant Director Matthew Bryan at Matthew.Bryan@ucf.edu