Showing posts from 2021

Return of the Native

Way back when PeerCentered kicked off in the late 1990's, it was a live, real-time online discussion group conducted in a text-based chat system. Peer tutors from around the world gathered to talk about topics relevant to their work. As you might imagine, regular live online meetings weren't even remotely as ubiquitous as they are today, so maintaining and sustaining them was difficult. It was then that PeerCentered shifted towards the blog model that has occupied it since 2002.   With 2022 being the 20th anniversary of the PeerCentered blog, it seems appropriate to celebrate that through returning to our roots and revive the real-time online PeerCentered discussions. This time, however, rather than using a clunky text chat interface, we're going to hold them with live audio and video and all the bells and whistles that such an environment can provide.  Starting in January 2022, we'll have four monthly discussions for peer writing tutors and other interested parties. 

Consulting Like You: How to get in Touch with Your Consulting Style

          I remember my first year as a peer tutor at my high school’s writing center. I could not have been more than fifteen years old when I went to my very first orientation session. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, but I was enthusiastic to learn. That year, the managers of my center were very excited to tell us all about something called minimalist theory. Minimalist theory is a consulting style that focuses on getting students to think for themselves. I won’t go too much in depth here, but if you want to know more I wrote a different article on the subject called “Minimalist Theory: When and When not to Use it.”            The managers pushed this theory pretty hard, undoubtably because they wanted us to focus on practicing it. However, in doing so I, as an itty-bitty baby consultant, internalized the message that minimalist theory was the only way to teach writing. This was a problem for a number of reasons but the main one is that minimalism is most certainly NOT th

Tutoring High School Writers in Early Access University Writing Courses

by Al DeCiccio, Marina Abate, Haley Noone, Harley Pereira, and Bill Coyle (Salem State University), with Alexandra Kirby (Salem High School) Tom Deans and Jason Courtmanche have described how a college or university writing center can help change “incoming student attitudes toward writing” (58). This brief piece presents tutor and tutee evidence for their assertion. Tutors from the Salem State University Writing Center have reflected on their experiences tutoring early access Salem High School students enrolled in the University’s first-year writing course and a first-year history course. The high school students have also reflected on the tutoring they received. High School Students’ Reflections One of the Salem High School teachers provided responses from students answering this question: “How did tutoring help you grow as a writer?” ·          The tutors helped me expand my vocabulary, dig for deeper meanings, and find solutions to writing obstacles. ·          They help