The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

    Writing center offers students help

    It’s that time of the year again where class work loads are picking up. And with that means the dreaded “W” word. Writing. Whether it’s a lab report, research paper or even an entire masters degree thesis, some students struggle with their writing, or just wish they were better at it.
    Mississippi State University has the solution for students at any writing level. The MSU Writing Center, located in Lee Hall, opened in January 2005. This center is open to any MSU student of any writing level and all assistance is free of charge.
    Students may be referred to the Writing Center by a professor or may make appointments themselves.
    The Writing Center is staffed by nine tutors, called writing consultants, who are trained to help any student with any writing problem they may have.
    These consultants are also students at MSU who are pursuing a master’s of arts degree in English and also teach a class in the MSU English department. They have been trained by the English department in one-on-one writing consultation and can help a student of any major or concentration with their writing.
    “The best part of our job is the one-on-one interaction with students from all departments,” said writing consultant Laura Vernon. “Most of the consultants spend around eight hours per week in the writing center, and three consultants usually staff the center at all times,” she said.
    The staff of the Writing Center can help students who have a writing assignment but don’t know where to start. “The consultants will help you think about the requirements of the assignment, about the audience and purpose, and about what they know and need to find out,” Writing Center director Tennyson O’Donnell said.
    First-time visitors to the Writing Center are required to sign a contract that states they know the writing consultants are there to help them, not do their assignment for them.
    Each consultation visit lasts a maximum of 25 minutes, and every student is allowed two sessions at the Writing Center per week.
    The Writing Center is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Fridays from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. The center is also closed Wednesdays from noon to 1 p.m. for staff meetings.
    For any questions in reference to the Writing Center, their Web site is located at www.msstate.edu/dept/english/writingcenter.html.

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