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Writing Center Policies

The Writing Center sets forth clear expectations and policies for both students and consultants to provide the best experience possible for all who use our services. Please look below to learn more about these policies in detail.

Policies & Expectations

We place very high expectations on our staff to perform the best we can as per consultants while upholding our core values of academic & linguistic excellence, inclusion, and integrity. In return, we ask that you are… 

  1. Prepared: Arrive with the assignment guidelines, your draft (if you have one), a good idea of how we can help you, and a readiness to participate in the session! If your session is in-person, please bring your draft and/or other relevant materials on a personal computer, a flash drive, or as a printed copy. For more information, please read Preparing For Your Appointment.

  2. Prudent: Manage your time well! If the paper is due tomorrow and you come to try to get as much done as possible with us, there won’t be much we can help you with, and consultants have the right to refuse service if it is apparent this is the case. Additionally, try to schedule at least a few days in advance. Our calendars often fill up, so getting an appointment the same day may not be possible. If this occurs, don’t forget about the waiting list feature!  

  3. Professional: Please arrive to the session at the start time. Consultants reserve the right to cancel if you are 15 minutes late (look below for our Policy on Late/Missed Appointments). Additionally, always be polite & respectful towards are staff and space, as well as willing to fully participate in the session. Our appointments rely on mutual conversation, connection, and collaboration to be successful and enjoyable.

Unacceptable Behavior

In accordance with AU’s Student Conduct Code and the mission of the Student Academic Services team, we have a zero tolerance policy against the use of foul, disrespectful, or threatening language and/or behavior toward any staff member or student. If you experience any related issue, please report the matter to tutoring@american.edu as soon as possible. 

  1. All appointments must be scheduled, we are not able to accept drop-ins at this time whether online or in-person- no exceptions.  

  2. Appointments must be made at least 2 hours before the start time. They cannot be created more than 14 days, or 2 weeks, in advance.

  3. Students may schedule one appointment per day, or three appoinmtnets per week. Otherwise, there is no semester limit.

  4. Students may only make appointments for their own work- other students cannot use their accounts. However, AU Faculty & Staff may schedule an appointment on behalf of a student.  

If you are more than 15 minutes late, your appointment will be cancelled, and you will be marked as a “No-Show.” Three no-shows will result in account deactivation. This includes missed appointments from other calendars available on WC Online, such as PASS or Math & Stats.  

However, accounts can be reactivated by a coordinator should the student schedule a brief meeting with one to discuss our policy. If this is the case, please reach out at writingcenter@american.edu

Appointments may be freely cancelled or modified up to 3 hours before the start time.

  1. Log into WC Online and select your reserved appointment time in yellow. Scrolling to the bottom of the Exiting Appointment form, and select either “Edit Appointment” or “Cancel Appointment”
  2. Contact the Writing Center during reception hours by email (writingcenter@american.edu) or phone (202-885-2991).

If you have a sudden event or emergency that will prevent you from attending your appointment on short notice, please contact us right away for cancelation with no penalty to you.  

  1. Proofread a paper: Writing consultants will not simply “check your paper” or correct errors line-editing style. Instead, they will teach revision strategies, as well as how to recognize technical errors, develop your voice & style, and improve your overall skills. Our sessions rely on mutual connection, conversation, and cooperation to be successful. Writing consultants have the right to end a session if a student simply wants proofreading with no participation.  

  1. Take responsibility for your work: We’re more than willing to help you at any step of the writing process, but remember that this is a collaborative effort, and it’s ultimately your work. We may help you improve the grade you get, but the grade (and the work) is still your own. 

  1. Violate the Academic Integrity Code: Our consultants adhere steadfastly to the AU Academic Integrity Code. No violations (cheating, plagiarism, bribery, etc.) are tolerated. Violations will be reported. If you are bringing us a take-home exam, you must email written consent to review from your professor to writingcenter@american.edu

We are unable to assist with career writing as our specialization is in academic writing. Career writing includes resumes, CVs, cover letters, application letters, etc. However, the AU Career Center will be happy to assist you in this regard. 

Writing consultants will help you on take-home essay exams provided we have received written consent from the instructor prior to your appointment. Your instructor can send permission to review your take-home exam for you specificially, or blanket permission for the entire class, to writingcenter@american.edu

Enjoy your session! Our consultants look forward to meeting you and collaborating to help you explore & develop your ideas and skills. We enjoy helping students become their best academic selves- we wouldn’t do this if we didn’t!  

 

Questions?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of our policies, please reach out at writingcenter@american.edu.

Additionally, click here for a full list of our Frequently Asked Questions.

Deactivated Account?

If your account has been deactivated due to the accumulation of missed appointments, reach out to us. We will arrange a brief meeting with a coordinator to discuss our policy and reinstating your account.