At the Writing Center, our mission is to help all students at MCCC become better writers by providing an opportunity for close and regular contact with a supportive, yet critical audience.
We believe that a writer can learn a good deal by talking to a sensitive and responsive reader before, during, and after writing and rewriting.
The only way to learn how to write well is by writing and rewriting. Because we view writing as a complex process involving the recursive application of a wide range of thinking skills, our writing fellows strive to always listen and engage students in a constructive dialogue as part of the composing process.
The Writing Center is committed to the following principles:
- We will begin where the student is and establish and maintain a rapport that shows an interested concern for the needs of the individual writer.
- We will allow the writer to do the work: we will resist the temptation to become a rewriter. The Writing Fellow recognizes the need for an immediate, constructive response and will suggest strategies for improvement. However, the writer does the work and the consultant monitors and guides the process. We will allow the writer time to find his or her own best way of working.
- We will deal with "high-order" concerns before "low-order" concerns. By high-order concerns we mean such things as thesis or focus, appropriate voice or tone, organization and development of ideas. Low-order concerns would include such things as sentence structure, punctuation, usage and spelling. A student's time is not well spent if he or she works with spelling and punctuation in an assignment that needs to be substantially revised and rewritten because of problems with high-order concerns. We wish to help each writer improve each piece of writing. We are willing to accept small successes, and we will try not to expect too much. We are not miracle workers; we recognize our limitations. In many cases we are dealing with writing problems students have developed over many years. We cannot solve all writing problems in an hour or two – or even in a semester or two.
The Writing Fellows Program was developed in support of writing across the curriculum at MCCC. This means that at MCCC you may be assigned writing (essays, research papers, reports, etc.) in courses that fall under every academic discipline. We encourage all MCCC faculty to use writing as a learning tool. Because of this, we also provide MCCC students, free of charge, the opportunity to consult with writing fellows – successful student writers who are trained and qualified to comment on other students writing – via the Writing Center.
The purpose of the Writing Fellows Program is to help all MCCC students improve their writing through feedback from trained writing tutors who are also students at MCCC. We think that students of all abilities will benefit from peer feedback. Even professional writers seek out and value the comments of their peers.
You will benefit most by consulting with a writing fellow at various stages of your writing project — especially for research papers that may require several major steps toward completion.
Writing Fellows will not write your paper for you, but they will help you write a paper that does the following:
- Follows the directions of the assignment
- Has a clear organization plan
- Focuses on a main point (thesis statement)
- Develops main and supporting points with evidence and logic
- Provides transitions between paragraphs and within paragraphs
- Uses a formal system of documentation
If writing fellows notice significant errors in grammar, punctuation and spelling, they will let you know, but only after thoroughly discussing other aspects of your work that need attention (see list above). If you do not know how to find and correct these errors, writing fellows will help you by showing you editing strategies. Nevertheless, they will not locate and correct all of your errors item by item. That will be your responsibility.
Due to the pandemic, all tutoring will be completed by scheduling an appointment only. Please DO NOT send papers to the writing center address listed on any material dated prior to Fall 2020.
Textbook reading assignments can seem overwhelming. The Writing Center provides reading fellows who can help you learn to read critically and master those reading assignments by breaking them down into manageable parts.
Reading fellows are MCCC writing fellows who were nominated by faculty because of their writing abilities and have undergone further training to become reading tutors.
Reading fellows will:
- Teach you key questions to ask before reading
- Help you with summaries and understanding the main idea
- Work with you on making inferences
- Show you how to question bias
- Assist you in learning new study skills with reading
- Aid you in annotations and how to mark in the textbook
- Introduce the SQ3R method and how to utilize it
To make an appointment, call the Student Success Center at (734) 384-4167 or stop by the Writing Center in Room 218 of the Campbell Learning Resource Center.
Frequently Asked Questions
Make an appointment to ensure that a writing fellow will be available to work with you.
Use of the Writing Center is free to MCCC students.
Writing fellows at MCCC provide the assistance. These are MCCC students who have been nominated by faculty because of their writing abilities and willingness to work with other students. Writing fellows go through a rigorous training course (Advanced Composition) and continue to develop their skills at workshops and conferences.
If you have an assignment sheet or notes about the assignment, bring them to your session. Depending on how far along you are in your writing, you might bring notes or ideas, a first draft, an outline or whatever you have completed before your appointment. The writing fellow will help you determine which step you can work on next. If you are bringing a draft of your paper, please have it typed rather than written in longhand. It will be easier for you and the writing fellow to work from a typed copy. We do, however, accept handwritten papers. For more information on what to bring, please go to Files section.
No. However, in some cases your instructor may require you to work with a writing fellow or offer you extra credit to do so.
Writing fellows will help you with all stages of the writing process, from prewriting to final revision. The writer and the tutor work together to begin, critique and/or improve the written work in process. Writing fellows can help with essays, research papers, speeches, business reports and just about any other type of writing assignment. While the writing fellows will not edit your paper in any way or rewrite or change anything in your paper, they will teach you strategies for revising and editing of your own work.
Check with your instructor.