Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey
What If I cannot make my appointment?

If you are unable to make your appointment, please call (831) 647-6412 or e-mail the writing center at writingcenter@miis.edu as soon as possible!

What If I am late to my appointment?

If you are late for your scheduled appointment, your tutor will wait for you for ten minutes before your time slot will be given to another student.

If I have a quick question about grammar do I need to schedule an appointment?

If you have a quick question on grammar or style (e.g., using footnotes), you may drop by the center and ask a tutor if he or she is not already working with another student.

Is there anything my writing tutor will not help me with?

The tutors will not read more than one paper in one session. Also, tutors will not work on documents that you bring from outside of MIIS (i.e., documents that have not been assigned by a MIIS professor or that are not a part of a degree course). Lastly, the tutors will not edit, proofread, or “fix” your English.

How come my writing tutor said my paper was great, but my content area professor gave me a low grade?

Your tutor looks at your paper as a process of drafts not as a final product. Moreover, tutors look primarily at the structure, logic, and linguistic elements of your paper more than the content. It’s a good idea to get feedback from your content area professor before you submit the final draft.

Will my writing tutor edit or “fix” my English for me?

Never. Writing tutors will help you become independent, resourceful writers. By editing or “fixing” your English you will not learn how to become a better writer, rather you will just become dependent on having someone else do your work for you. You can expect your instructor to discuss organization and give you strategies for structuring your paper. They will also help you with grammar, word choice, cohesion, paraphrasing, and citations. In certain cases, your tutor might model several different ways you might rephrase an idea.

How can I prepare for my tutorial?

For walk-ins, please bring two copies of your paper, the assignment guidelines, and a copy of the writing feedback form. The feedback form is available on the Writing Center News Conference.

What does a typical session look like?

A typical tutorial begins by your tutor asking you what you need help with. In many cases, your tutor will ask you to explain what your paper is about, your professor’s expectations, and what stage of the drafting process you in (e.g., are you brainstorming topics, working on a first draft, or trying to compile citations). In certain cases, your tutor will even ask you to bring the assignment guidelines to determine exactly what you are expected to do.

What is the teaching methodology?

The GWC takes a process approach to teaching writing. Tutors don’t look at a paper as a final draft. Rather, they see a paper as evolving over multiple drafts. Tutors will help students brainstorm ideas, compose outlines, structure their papers, improve the fluency of their ideas, and adhere to stylistic conventions of their field (e.g., APA or Chicago, etc.). The structure of the session always focuses on the student’s needs. Tutors expect, however, that students will take full responsibility for their learning and work with the tutor to improve their writing.

Who are the tutors?

GWC tutors are highly qualified writing instructors who are able to help both native and nonnative writers improve their writing skills at the graduate level. Their area of content expertise varies from tutor to tutor, so it’s best to ask.