I'm a new member of the Writing Center at Boise State University checking in. I'm an English major with a teaching emphasis and my goal is to teach writing to middle school students. When I applied to work in our university's center I thought it would be a perfect fit--a way of getting some experience.
On our campus we have a class that coincides with our first semester working in the center to help prepare us for the world of writing centers. At first our class covered a lot of theory and history about writing centers and it bummed me out a little. I really wanted to learn about the "right way" to approach writers who need help, not about the evolution of college writing centers. It hasn't been until recently that we've begun to tackle approaches to the actual tutoring process, but I can already see I am going to learn a lot of what I'm looking for.
I have been wondering though, is there anyone out there who teaches and has worked or does currently work in a writing center? What types of experiences or lessons have you found to be valuable? What specific knowledge should I be trying to gain from my class and my working in our center? Your responses would be greatly appreciated!
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I have posted a poll in the IWCA forums: IWCA Forum: Peer Tutor => What do we call ourselves: the poll! It is a part of an earlier discussion that kind of petered out about the titles used for writing center workers. Please take a moment and vote! If you don't have an account on the forum, you can register for one by clicking on the "Register" link (next to the rocket icon in the top-right of the page.) Don't forget to state your institutional affiliation when you request and account. (That's how the IWCA Forum keeps out spam accounts.)
As a frightened freshman, I wandered deep in the bowels of the library basement. My eyes darted from room number to room number, looking for the aid my professor promised I could find. At the end of the hall, a golden light shone from an open doorway. My approach was slow and I lingered on the threshold. All uncertainty vanished when I was greeted with a smile and welcomed into the new world of the Tutoring Center. At the time, I did not know I would spend most of my weekdays in that room as a senior or how mundane this new world would become. How could I? I didn’t even know how much insight I would receive from my tutor that day! Being a learner in the writing center is a wholly different experience than being a tutor, yet I know many of my colleagues have not had the same learning experiences that I have. I think this is unfortunate because there is much that a tutor can gain from being a learner. It was my freshman year of college and everything was new. For me, that meant that fear
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