While Mason is offering all instruction online (currently through the summer sessions), the Writing Center will not offer face-to-face tutoring. All sessions are offered online during this time. Please visit our pages on online tutoring and video tutoring, and send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We offer individual face-to-face tutoring on Mason's Fairfax and Arlington campuses. We'll work with you on all phases of a writing project from brainstorming to revising. We envision the tutoring session as a conversation about your paper, and we provide feedback, share tips and strategies, and help you make a plan for further developing or revising your project. Sessions begin on the half hour and last up to 45 minutes.
In a typical face-to-face session you will
Review the assignment
The tutor will ask you about the purpose of the piece of writing you have brought in. If you are working on an assignment for a course, please remember to bring the assignment prompt.
Read through the piece of writing
We'll ask you to read your draft aloud; this is a classic editing technique that can help you and your tutor identify areas in the draft to work on. If you prefer not to read aloud, just tell your tutor.
Set your goals for the session
You and your tutor will set the agenda for the session together. It is helpful if you arrive with an idea of what you would like to work on—the paper's organization, your thesis and supporting evidence, or sentence-level concerns. Once you’ve reviewed the assignment and read through the piece of writing, the tutor may suggest working on an additional issue or two.
Have a conversation about your work
The tutor will pose questions and make observations about the issues you've decided to work on in the session. From this conversation you and the tutor will determine a plan for revising and moving forward with this assignment.
Work on strategies for effective writing
Your tutor might recommend strategies or provide resources for you to take with you to help you both with the assignment at hand and with future writing projects.
Leave with a plan for moving forward
You and your tutor will spend the last few minutes of the session summarizing what you've discussed and sketching a plan for moving forward, whether that be conducting more research, developing your ideas, or revising your draft.
Please remember that the Writing Center is not an editing or proofreading service. We work with you to improve your own proofreading and editing skills, but we don’t simply point out problems or rewrite them for you. We want to help you learn to become your own best proofreader and editor.