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University Writing Services

Whether you are brainstorming your first assignment at Saint Louis University or putting the final touches on your dissertation, Saint Louis University Writing Services can offer individualized feedback on your writing and composition process.

Writing Services
 

University Writing Services can assist with any piece of writing, oral presentations or multimedia projects. We work with students from all SLU colleges and departments on academic and non-academic writing. Our role is to support you by offering a variety of consultation options to hone your skills and become a more confident writer. We encourage you to bring in your project at any point in the composition process so that we can assist you in all phases of the writing process, including:

  • Identifying the topic you want to write about
  • Clarifying and organizing ideas
  • Researching, drafting and revising
  • Improving grammar, punctuation and usage
  • Citing sources properly

We cannot guarantee you better grades and we don’t proofread or copyedit essays. 

Delivery of Services

Students may choose one of three options for writing consultations: in-person consultations, synchronous video consultations and online (asynchronous) feedback. Students can schedule appointments through EAB Navigate located under the "Tools" tab of the mySLU portal. Consultations begin on the hour, typically last for 45 to 50 minutes and are followed by a brief survey. There is a maximum of three appointments per week. No back-to-back appointments are permitted.

For the fall 2021 semester, appointments will begin on Wednesday, August 25, 2021 and will continue until Friday, December 17, 2021. In accordance with the SLU academic calendar, the services will not be available during Labor Day, Fall Break, and the Thanksgiving Break. For questions, email writing@slu.edu.

In-Person Appointments

University Writing Services offers in-person appointments in three locations throughout campus: Busch Student Center, suite 331; Pius XII Memorial Library, room 320; and Trudy Busch Valentine School of Nursing, suite 114.

If you are working on an assignment for a specific class, you are encouraged to bring the prompt and grading criteria provided by your instructor. Appointments typically begin with a discussion of the context and audience surrounding the project as well as your vision and needs for the finished product. After solidifying the goals, you and/or the consultant will read your work aloud, discussing higher and lower order concerns to develop a plan for completing or revising your current project.

To schedule an in-person consultation, go to EAB Navigate in the mySLU portal and select your preferred location to see all of the consultants' availability.

Synchronous Video Consultations (Limited Options)

Synchronous video consultations will take place in real time using Zoom. You and the writing consultant will look at your writing project by sharing the screen, using the in-meeting chat function, and making annotations. These conferences can be conducted using a desktop computer or laptop (preferred) or tablet (limited functionality). To communicate with the writing consultant, your device must have microphone accessibility. Webcam accessibility is strongly recommended.

To schedule a synchronous video consultation, go to EAB Navigate in the tools tab of the mySLU portal. Make sure to select “Virtual (University Writing Services)” as the location and "Zoom Video Conference" as the service to see all of the consultants’ availabilities.  Remember to save the link to the writing consultant's virtual meeting room on the final confirmation page. You should plan to sign into Zoom on the day and time of your scheduled appointment to meet with your consultant.

Online (Asynchronous) Feedback 

To request an online (asynchronous) consultation, please follow the provided instructions. 

  • Complete the submission form. 
      • The submission form will provide two designated locations for attachments, one to upload your document and another to upload an optional related prompt or rubric. It is helpful to give as much information about the context and purpose of the project.  Please save and upload your file in .doc or .docx format.
      • Please note that the feedback process is time-intensive. Writing consultants will only be able to provide feedback for 7 to 10  pages per online consultation.  You may indicate  the pages for which you would like to receive feedback or the consultant will work with the first 7 to 10 pages of your submitted document.
  • An online writing consultant will send you feedback from the writing@slu.edu email  account. This feedback will consist of marginal comments (in Microsoft Word) and a brief summary. Please make sure that you download the updated document to your computer, as you may not see marginal comments in the "view" function of many internet browsers. 
  •  If you want additional feedback after an initial draft, you will need to repeat the submission steps after you have received and implemented comments. Each submission requires a new submission form. Make sure to indicate the appropriate section, whether it is the same section or a new range of pages of the project.
  • The turnaround time to receive asynchronous feedback is within 1 to 5 business days (depending on student demand and the time of the semester). Alternatively, to schedule an appointment that guarantees same-day feedback, go to EAB Navigate in the tools tab of the mySLU portal and select "Online (Asynchronous) Consultation" as the service.

Visit at Any Point in Your Writing Process

At University Writing Services, we help you work on whatever you are writing at the moment. Even the most experienced writers find it useful to get feedback on their work throughout the entire creative process.

Remember Us for Revisions

We can even help you work through multiple drafts of the same assignment. If you plan ahead and make multiple appointments over the course of a project, we can offer even more help. In fact, we recommend coming several times a semester. Dividing your writing into smaller steps improves the final product. If you find that our scheduling software does not allow you to make an appointment far enough in advance, please contact the coordinator of Academic Support, Alexander Ocasio (alex.ocasio@slu.edu) .

Who We Are

Peer Consultants

Peer consulting gives you an opportunity to voice your priorities, ideas, and concerns. It can be a time to think aloud, organize thoughts, and ask questions outside of a classroom setting.

Consultants at University Writing Services are part time staff, graduate consultants, and undergraduate students who are trained not only in the different ways people write, but also how to talk about writing with others in a respectful and productive manner. Our consultants are good listeners as well as good writers.

  • Graduate students work with trained graduate students or part time staff.
  • Undergraduates work with trained undergraduate consultants, graduate consultants, or part time staff.

Interested in Becoming a Writing Consultant?

Our consultants come from a variety of majors. Consulting is an excellent way to serve the SLU community while gaining additional writing, communication and professional experience.

Writing Consultant Training Courses

Undergraduate students interested in becoming a writing consultant are expected to enroll in English 3859 in the Spring 2022 semester. The training course is  open to all students who have successfully completed an intensive writing course like English 1900 and are interested in learning more about writing while helping others.

This course meets regularly for the first eight weeks. Starting halfway through the semester, students are scheduled to consult with novice writers for two hours each week in the Busch Student Center. Students are also mentored by experienced consultants. To compensate for the additional workload, the course itself meets for one hour less per week until the end of the term.  

Professionally, writing consultants (including ENGL 3859 students) are expected to be on time, respectful of students and faculty, supportive of all writers, and attentive to the needs of others. All consultants must adhere to the policies and model the best practices of peer consulting as introduced by the staff at University Writing Services.

Students receive a grade at the end of the semester that assesses their academic work as well as their professional commitment to consulting.

Paid Consultants

After completing ENGL 3859, students are eligible to apply for a staff position. University Writing Services usually hires six to nine new undergraduate consultants each academic year who work several hours per week.

Paid consultants continue their professional development by training with other staff members in addition to researching, reflecting, and writing about theoretical principles that influence current writing center practices.