The Writing Center is intended to be an educational resource. We want to help you become a better writer. We hope that individual conferences will help you make progress on specific pieces of writing and learn, or practice, general skills to apply to future writing projects.
What We Do
Clark University’s Writing Center offers all Clark students free one-to-one assistance with your writing. Our writing consultants will work with you on any piece of writing, from short papers, research papers and honors theses to graduate school applications and resumes. Conferences can focus on different aspects of writing: from grammar, word choice, and style to thesis development, coherence and overall organization.
Writing Center conferences are interactive, and we expect you to actively participate in conferences by asking questions and generating ideas for improving your writing. We do not edit or proofread your essays for you while you do other work; rather, we work on a piece of writing with you. Our goal is to help you improve your writing skills, and this is possible only if you participate in the consultation.
Scheduling an Appointment
You also may call the Writing Center at (508) 793-7405 (on campus x7405) to schedule an appointment.
The Clark University Writing Center is located in the Academic Commons, suite 104, and has appointments available on Mondays to Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. On Fridays the Clark University Writing Center has appointments available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
If you need to cancel an appointment, please do so at least three hours before that appointment. A cancellation made less than three hours before that appointment will be considered a missed appointment.
If you miss two appointments in one semester, you will not be able to schedule any more appointments for the semester. You will be placed on the “wait list” if you wish to have an appointment.
Getting the Most Out of the Writing Center
Come early in the writing process, especially if you feel that you would benefit from help with developing a thesis and help with the overall structure of a paper. We’re happy to work with you before you’ve written anything, when you have an early draft or when you’re polishing a final draft of a writing project.
Our writing consultants have only 50 minutes per appointment to work with you, so if you are working on a paper longer than 7 pages, please decide what pages or what aspects of the paper you would like to work on within those 50 minutes.
Before you come
Please plan to arrive on time! (When we are busy, we give away your appointment if you are ten minutes late. If you must be late, call us to tell us and we’ll hold your appointment for you.)
Have a clear idea of the assignment
Bring the assignment handout, as well as any other course materials, from class that you might reference in the writing assignment.
Come with a goal
Think about which aspect of the writing project you need the most help with (e.g., brainstorming something to writer about, overall structure of a paper, paragraph structure, specific grammatical problems).
What to Expect During Your Consultation
The beginning of conferences
The consultant will read your paper, or parts of your paper if it is very long, and listen to what you would like to work on.
Together you will agree on the main goals for the conference
Expect that a consultant may identify important goals that you did not think of. Deciding what to work on in conference is a collaborative process.
What productive conferences are like
Again, a conference is productive when a student writer actively participates by asking questions and generating his or her own ideas for improving a piece of writing.
Work is done in conferences. If you come to the Writing Center to work on sentence structure expect to write some sentences. If you come to work on identifying a thesis for a paper expect to generate some, discuss their pros and cons, and end up with a number of good candidates.