Tutoring Sessions

Soliciting and receiving feedback on writing is a normal part of the writing process, and it models the collaborative work that takes place in academic and professional settings. All writers—emerging to advanced—can benefit from sharing their writing with careful, supportive readers. Tutoring sessions with trained writing tutors provide a supportive and resource-rich environment for writers to develop their ideas, consider a reader’s response to their writing, discuss revision strategies, and increase their confidence and abilities in writing.

What to Expect

The Writing Center works with all student writers, free of charge, from any discipline and on any writing task, whether academic assignments, creative writing work, employment, or graduate school application materials. In a typical 30-minute appointment, writers and tutors will set an agenda for the session, read through some or all of the text, discuss the writing and relevant writing principles, and apply new information or ideas as part of the revision process. Student writers should come to the tutoring session ready to actively participate in talking, writing, thinking, and revising their work. Depending on where a student is in the writing process, tutors can help with any of the following:

  • Making sure the writing matches the assignment
  • Clarifying, solidifying, and strengthening content
  • Organizing  the text
  • Identifying and working with grammar and usage concerns 
  • Citing sources and following a specific format (e.g., APA)
  • Dealing with writer’s block
  • Discussing document design
  • Revising for stylistic considerations

While tutors can help in these areas, they will not be able to help with all of them in a single tutoring session. Learning to write effectively and building confidence in writing is an ongoing process, but improvement comes with practice, and each tutoring session leaves the writer with useful skills and strategies to help in this process.

Since a tutoring session is a learning experience for writers, we do not edit, proofread, co-write, or take ownership of other writers’ work.

What to Bring

To make the most of a tutoring session, come prepared with as many of the following as possible:

  • Assignment description or prompt, grading sheet or rubric
  • Instructor and/or peer feedback on drafts or ideas
  • A current draft, outline, notes, or ideas
  • Questions or concerns

How to Make an Appointment

The Writing Center and Research & Writing Center are set up to take drop-in appointments, where tutors work with student writers on a first-come, first-served basis. The Writing Center (4026 JKB) also takes appointments and recommends that writers make appointments during busy times in the semester.

To make an appointment, writers can click on the Schedule an Appointment link on the home page or simply register and sign up for an appointment at BYU Writing Center's Online Scheduling System. Once you have registered, you may make, move, or cancel appointments as needed.

Additional Policies & Reminders

  • Students who are more than five minutes late for an appointment forfeit that appointment and may be asked to reschedule.
  • Tutors focus on improving writers, not just writing, so tutoring sessions are active learning sessions for all involved, including setting an agenda for the session.
  • Tutors do not discuss or assign grades to assignments.
  • Students may sign up for no more than one hour of help each day. Additionally, writers are expected to revise and practice writing skills and strategies between sessions.
  • Information about tutoring sessions may be used for research, but personal information (FERPA-protected) will not be included without student consent.
  • The Writing Center will only notify faculty of a visit upon request. Notification is sent via email, using the instructor's email as provided by the student.
  • Writers should give themselves ample time to practice writing principles and implement revision suggestions.

For more information about our services, see our Students FAQ page.