Info for Faculty

The Writing Center works with Salem State faculty members in several ways. We are happy to:

  • keep your writing assignments on file in the center
  • work with you to devise ways we might work with your classes on a particular writing assignment
  • schedule, in your class or at the center, an introductory presentation on the Writing Center
  • Please call either Jan Lindholm or Bill Coyle to let us know how we can help!

Jan Lindholm: 978.542.6847

Bill Coyle: 978.542.6455

How We Can Help Your Students

We invite all faculty members to refer students to the center, where our trained tutors serve as an audience for writers from all disciplines. A student can come to the Writing Center at any point in the process of producing a paper.

He or she might arrive with:

  • an assignment and no writing
  • an assignment and sketchy notes
  • an assignment and an essay returned with professor comments
  • an assignment and a rough draft
  • an assignment and a complete draft

We help writers brainstorm, organize their papers and work through the kinds of problems all writers encounter. Most academic writing centers, including ours, operate on the premise that writers can benefit from discussing their work with an informed and supportive reader. Our undergraduate and graduate tutors take a semester-long training course, Writing Center Practicum. They are trained to discuss each paper not as an end in itself, but as a means of helping the writer learn strategies that can improve future papers as well as the current one.

An Individualized Process

Generally, the tutor first discusses the assignment with the writer. Depending on the stage of the draft, the tutor will then decide on an approach. In the earlier stages of writing, the tutor and student will frequently talk about ways to retrieve information or about techniques for generating ideas.

In the later stages of the writing process, a tutor will likely prioritize student needs within the context of the assignment. For example, for a draft riddled with surface errors that also did not meet the requirements of the assignment, the tutor will likely discuss the assignment and work with the student on strategies for completing the task. Thus, it is possible that within the limits of a 45-minute conference, the surface errors in the original draft may not be discussed. In this situation, the tutor will suggest that the student make a follow-up appointment.

"The Writing Center is not for proofreading or 'injection' of ideas, but for the expansion and creation of ideas. It is about asking questions, not just providing answers." -Sophomore, theater arts