Welcome to the Writing Center blog! by Dr. Gina M. Sully

Post date: Sep 6, 2016 12:30:12 AM

Howdy Folks! Welcome to the new UNLV Writing Center website. We hope you like the new format. Keep your eyes open—we’ll be adding revising old material and uploading new materials as the semester moves along.

We’ve made a few other changes this semester, too. First, please welcome Assistant Director Sara Tajalli and Professional Writing Consultant Meagan Madariaga-Hopkins. Both have extensive experience teaching for the English Language Center and are putting their expertise to use developing workshops and teaching and learning materials for UNLV’s multi-lingual writers.

Our workshops will now be offered throughout the semester rather than in a two-week block in the middle of it. These workshops are open to any active UNLV undergrad, grad student, faculty member, or staff person. We’re opening with MLA Basics, APA Basics, Essay Basics, and Grammar for Multi-Lingual Writers on Tuesday, 6 September 2016; each workshop runs twice, so if you can’t make it Tuesday (RLL 101), then join us Wednesday (SU 219).

Beginning this semester, we’re also offering workshops specifically geared toward grad students two Fridays a month. The first one, on 16 September 2016 (RLL 101) is designed to help grad-student instructors use writing for formative assessment without losing time for content instruction—and to grade writing assignments efficiently.

Please check our calendar and Workshop Schedule to see future offerings. You may find our Avoiding Plagiarism in Three Parts particularly useful.

We’ve got a new service in addition to our 45-minute one-on-one consultations as well. We call it the Quick Question service. If you have a short question that a consultant can answer in ten or fewer minutes, then just walk in and let the front-desk assistant know you have a Quick Question. If there’s a consultant available, you could get an answer on the spot. If your question will take longer than ten minutes to answer, the consultant will help you book an appointment to get a more complete answer.

We’ve found that classroom presentations about our services increase student usage. There’s a digital form available under the Instructors tab that instructors can use to make an appointment for a Writing Center representative to come to classrooms to explain our services to their students.

Also for instructors: Our professional writing consultant will work with you to develop custom presentations for your classes. Since we only have one PWC, slots are limited, so contact us as soon as possible at writingcenter@unlv.edu.

Finally, I’d like to take a moment to dispel some myths about the Writing Center.

· The Writing Center is not a “fix-it” shop. Our goal is to help writers to develop strategies that will enable them to make more informed choices as they write, choices based on context, audience, purpose, and conventions of the genre. This takes time and, usually, multiple visits.

· The Writing Center is not just for English papers. We consult with writers from every discipline.

· We’ll consult on any writing, even if it’s not related to school. Except for documents that serve a legal purpose. You should see a lawyer for that.

· You don’t have to have anything written to come to the Writing Center. You can consult with us before you’ve written a word. Talking to a consultant before you begin can help to ensure you don’t go down the wrong path.

· Need to brainstorm? Talk to a consultant. Need to understand the assignment sheet? Talk to a consultant.

Finally, watch for future blogs from our writing consultants. I am certain they’ll be much more entertaining than this!


Dr. Gina