The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

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The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

The Writing Center: A Saving Grace For Students

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The Writing Center orientation for tutors. (Photo Courtesy of Paula Barrington-Schmidt) 

The Writing Center at CSU Stanislaus provides convenient, quality tutoring for students, offering help with reading, writing and grammar. Help is available to assist students with their writing at every level, from first-year to graduate students. In other words, if you need help on a paper, this is the right place for you.
According to the Writing Center website, “The Writing Center works collaboratively with undergraduate and graduate students to develop and craft their writing. Usually, tutors first address larger issues, such as focus, organization and development; then, tutors assist writers with sentence-level issues, such as grammar, punctuation and diction. We welcome questions about any part of the reading, writing and research process.”
Paula Barrington-Schmidt, the writing center director, said the writing center is generally writer/student driven.
“It should be what the writer wants to do,” she said. “Sometimes the writer doesn’t know, and so that’s when the tutor can help guide someone to where maybe they need the most feedback.”
Maria Camarena, a graduate writing coordinator and multilingual specialist, said the writing center is always helpful whether you’re a novice or a great writer, adding that it’s always good to have that extra set of eyes.
“When I’m looking at something that I write, I’m not going to catch my own mistakes. I have my own biases,” she said. “So having that extra person be that audience member can really help you see things you’re not seeing.”
She added that they offer students help with prompts as well as how to plan their own writing.
“We help you explore different types of writing and what the context, purpose and audience can be for each type of writing,” she said.
Natalie Villanueva, (Junior, English), an editor, works in the writing center where she said students get to learn from other students like her rather than an instructor.
“By experiencing that, students are able to gain perspectives beyond a position of hierarchy,” she said. “Hearing advice from someone close to my age creates a safe place.”
Camarena added that the center will also help with revision and editing strategies.
“We are not going to fix your paper, but we can give direct instruction on how to possibly improve your paper,” she said. 
Students can schedule an appointment online through their portal at StanTutor and sign up from 2 to 10 days in advance. The center also provides same-day tutoring on a first-come first-served basis. 25-minute sessions may be requested after 9 a.m. and students are allowed to take one session per day and up to two total per week.
The Writing Center is located in the Vasche Library, room L221. They offer tutoring Monday to Friday and Sundays. You can reach them at (209) 667-3642 or by email at [email protected]

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The Writing Center: A Saving Grace For Students