What to Expect
We provide writers with a focused environment for developing their writing skills.
Creating an Account and Making an Appointment
We work with distance writers in collaborative appointments focused on developing writing skills through conversation and peer feedback.
Distance appointments use a digital workspace through Zoom. At your appointment time, check your appointment on the WCOnline schedule to access a link to your Zoom meeting room.
To make a Zoom appointment:
- Make an appointment and be sure to check the "This is a distance appointment" checkbox.
- We will provide a link to your Zoom meeting room in your appointment description on our schedule.
- Use the link to join at your scheduled appointment time. Note that all times are in the Central Time (CT) zone. For additional questions, please email us at UND.writingcenter@UND.edu.
- If you have a draft you would like to work on, please share your screen via Zoom once you are in the session.
- For more information about using Zoom, please see UND's guide.
Before Your Appointment
- Have an idea of what you want to work on during your appointment.
- Have these available:
- If you have a draft, bring a copy (hard copy or electronic).
- Your writing materials and instructions, like an assignment sheet, proposal requirements or personal statement guidelines.
- Any comments or feedback from previous readers, such as peer reviews or instructor feedback.
- Any additional resources, if you have them. These could be a copy of a documentation manual (like the APA Style Guide) or paper and a pencil to take notes.
During Your Appointment
- Explain your writing project to the consultant.
- For most writing projects, Writing Center sessions can usually review between 2-5 double-spaced pages, depending on the focus of the session.
- The consultant will ask:
- What the goal of your writing project is.
- What stage you are at in the writing project.
- If you have any particular concerns about your writing.
- If you would like notes from the session sent to your instructor.
- Together, you and the consultant will make a plan for the session.
- If you have a draft, you and the consultant can work through it, addressing any concerns.
- The consultant will read your draft aloud. This can help you identify new points to work on that you have not seen before.
- If you do not have a draft yet, the consultant can help you come up with ideas.
- You are highly encouraged to ask questions and take notes.
After Your Appointment
- You should:
- Have a plan for revision.
- Have a better idea of how a reader responds to your draft.
- Have some new strategies you can use in future writing projects.
Frequently Asked Questions
Writing Center appointments are collaborative sessions in which we can help you with your writing projects. We cannot write your paper for you, but we can help you identify revision strategies and connect you with other writing resources.
Before your session, you should identify what you would like to work on. If you have started writing, bring a copy of your draft.
- For physical copies: You must print your draft before your session. The nearest printer is on the first floor of Merrifield Hall. There is no printer in the Writing Center, and we cannot print a copy for you.
- For digital copies: Many students choose to bring their personal laptops in, but we have several computers in the Writing Center for session use. If you bring your own computer, make sure it is charged.
Once you begin your session, one of our consultants will ask you a few questions about your writing project. For example, we may ask you about:
- The project's goal and requirements
- The project's audience
- How far you are in your project
We will also ask if you would like a report of your session sent to a professor or advisor. This is optional and your choice will not affect the quality of your session.
If you are concerned about a specific part of your project, we can help you with that first. Otherwise, we can do a more broad overview of your work. The consultant can read your work out loud. While we are working through your project with you, we recommend that you take any notes you may need to get the most out of the session.
After your session, you should have a better idea of what to work on in the future.
The Writing Center is open to any current UND undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff. We also have resources for working with writers in UND's distance and online programs. We can work with any major or field. The Writing Center is free to use.
The Writing Center is free to use for all current UND undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff. Writers of any major or field may use the Writing Center.
In order to make a Writing Center appointment, users must first make an account on our WC Online site.
All users of the Writing Center may make up to two 30-minute appointment slots per day, up to a total of one hour per day. Students may not schedule two 30-minute appointments back-to-back so that they have an hour-long appointment.
In certain circumstances, hour-long on-campus or distance appointments may be requested for longer projects like graduate theses, doctoral dissertations or faculty publications. If you would like to request a longer appointment, please email the Writing Center at und.writingcenter@UND.edu stating your name and project and asking to extend your appointment to an hour. Please note that we cannot guarantee that you may receive an full hour-long appointment at any time due to consultant availability.
The Writing Center aims to accommodate every writer's individual needs, so writers may switch their appointments between on-campus and distance if needed. However, you must contact the Writing Center before your appointment to let us know of your situation. We can be contacted at:
- P 701.777.2795
We work with writers of diverse backgrounds, so we work with many different types of writing projects. Some common projects we see in the Writing Center are:
- Class assignments (such as an ENGL 110 paper)
- Resumes and CVs
- Job/school/scholarship application essays
- graduate theses and doctoral dissertations
- creative writing projects, like stories
No. We can help you most effectively when we are able to work collaboratively. This way, we can better understand your writing project and your personal writing techniques. If your main concern is "correctness" (proofreading your grammar, punctuation, and spelling), we can help you develop your editing skills and learn a few simple proofreading techniques. We can also look at and point you to various handbooks and resources we have in the Writing Center.
Some writing questions are outside of the scope of what we can offer. We are not primarily a resource for:
- direct editing or proofreading
- checking general documentation guidelines
- plagiarism detection
- a substitute for an English course
- questions about copyright and reproduction rights
- help with word processing software
However, we can connect you with resources that may suit your needs better.
We rely on current style manuals to answer questions about citations and formatting. We have various manuals for common documentation styles, and we can connect you with other resources outside of the Writing Center.
Yes, but we can only help you with what can realistically be done in a short amount of time. You may need time after your session to make changes to your draft.
You can get the most out of your session by setting up your appointment in advance of your paper's due date. The amount of lead time you'll need will vary depending on the type of assignment and how much work you've already done.
We can talk about the main parts of your project (such as organization, argument or content) or read and discuss a smaller portion of your draft. We can also coach you on strategies for working through a large project. You can also talk to us about setting up regular appointments to work through your larger project together over a period of time.
We typically reserve hour-long appointment slots for writers working on very long documents that require a lot of close attention. Examples of long documents include:
- a graduate thesis or doctoral dissertation
- a journal article to be published in a peer-reviewed publication
- a manuscript or book to be published
Half-hour sessions are appropriate for undergraduate students and smaller projects to give writers a chance to reflect on their sessions and make changes to their drafts without being overwhelmed by many revisions.
If you would like to request a longer appointment, please email the Writing Center at und.writingcenter@UND.edu stating your name and project and asking to extend your appointment to an hour. Please note that we cannot guarantee that you may receive an full hour-long appointment at any time due to consultant availability.
You can click on the "WAITING LIST" link for any day listed on our schedule to be added to the wait list for that day. You can specify if you only want to work with a certain consultant and which times work for you. Our system will then notify you by email if an appointment slot that fits your criteria opens up in the schedule.