Tutors: Our Role
Our role as tutors is to be the “backboard” to their “goal”; the writer’s goal being getting a good grade on their writing or maybe, just bettering their work. As the “backboard”, we let them bounce, or help them to bounce, their ideas off of us and in return, give them helpful, constructive feedback. As tutors, we are there to help them to learn how to properly edit their own papers and to give them inspiration and guidance when the writer’s may need it. Tutors are there to assist the writers learn more about writing and to help them manifest their visions and ideas, in a clear and cohesive manor, on to paper.
As a tutor, one should never write the work for the writer, and the same could be said for any tutor in any area of study. The writers cannot learn, grow and improve if you do. Tutors should: analyze and give beneficial notes on the writers work in order to help direct the writer to express their ideas more lucidly, make sure that the writers work flows well and the expressed ideas are unambiguous and intelligible. As a tutor, you may help a writer with their planning stages to help guide the writers’ ideas to transform on the page and give the writers advantageous ways to tackle their work in ways that make the assignment less daunting. Tutors may introduce strategies that work for them personally, when they write, but, should be sure to find a tactic that works best for the writer. Not everything works for everyone.
A tutor should show writers that the tutoring process is not one of heavy critique were they are chewed up and spit out nor is it one where work is done for them, but that tutoring is a helpful tool, in which people that are interested in writing actually want to help other writers. Tutoring should never be a situation of cavalier attitudes. Tutoring is meant to be a collaborative effort, one of the tutor and the writer, a situation of learning and growing, not judgment. The book mentions that the tutor should ask the writer to read their work aloud. This will then allow the tutor to take notes of things that they noticed for later conversation. I really like this concept. It, on the one hand, gives the reins to the writer and effectively makes them more comfortable (hopefully), and then, on the other hand, it allows you the tutor to catch things the need addressing and could even allow the writer to catch some problems along the way.