English Department
Writing Center

What is the Writing Center?

Even the most advanced writers benefit from working with qualified, perceptive, and encouraging tutors at the English Department Writing Center. Bring in your prompt, brainstorm, or freewrite and let the tutor's questions help draw out your ideas to find out where they might lead. Bring in your draft at any stage and talk with an objective audience about what’s working now, what you might improve, and how to go about it. Leave with fresh insights and energy to apply to your writing.

Our tutors are the most highly trained and experienced writing tutors on the Seattle campus. Each is selected from a pool of highly qualified candidates, based on the caliber of their own writing and interpersonal communication skills. Once chosen, they complete over 40 hours of training in the area of -peer tutoring and writing center pedagogy by taking the required course, ENGL 474. These qualifications enable them to work with anyone in the University of Washington community, from freshman to graduate students to faculty. They also welcome all types of writing.

When you reserve an appointment via our web sign up, you get 50 minutes of an EWC tutor's undivided attention. How that time is spent depends on you, your assignment, and where you are in the writing process. Our tutors will focus the session on aspects of the paper you want to look at. Or, if you have no clue where to start, they will begin with questions to help you look at larger scale issues, such as whether your claim or thesis actually captures the content of your essay, or whether you have fully developed your ideas. Tutors also collaborate to help you optimize the logic of your organization, the flow of your sentences, quality of word choices, and avoidance of grammatical errors.

You must have an appointment in order to see a tutor. We do not accept drop-ins. To set up your own appointment, click here. Or, to have us arrange one for you, contact us by e-mail, phone, or in person, via the contact info listed below.

Composition & Expository Writing

ENGL 111, 121, 131, 197, 198, 199, etc.
About half the students who come into the EWC are enrolled in writing classes that fulfill their “C” requirement. That means our tutors become familiar with some of these course readings and assignments and have an informed understanding of the learning outcomes instructors are looking for. Even better, tutors can take the time to explain some of the implicit expectations and conventions of academic writing beginning writers may need clarified. What makes a claim contestable? What constitutes a strong conclusion? Our tutors are happy to pass on their expertise.

ESL Students

Multilingual students also make up a large proportion of EWC visitors. If you’re working on your English, our tutors will still focus initially on the central issues of composition as they do for any writer, but they’re also willing to devote extra time to issues of grammar and usage.

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Last updated May 27, 2005