Showing posts from July, 2014

Writing Tutors as Car Salesmen

            “Grammar.”   The classic response to the question we ask every writer who comes to the Writing Center:   “So what would you like to work on today?”   Sure, grammar may be a perfectly acceptable response, but how often is it really what the student needs to work on?   Do they even know what they need to work on?   Would they still say grammar if they did?   Such is the dilemma faced by writing tutors, as frequently the issues identified by students are not what they need to work on to improve their writing, and are only what they think they need.   Consequently, how can we as writing tutors be of good service and focus on what the student wants, while actually doing our job of focusing on what the student needs?   Easy – just practice what I consider to be the ‘car salesmen’ approach:   allow the student to tell you what they want to buy, and then convince them to happily buy something else.                     I believe that our effectiveness as writing tutors can b