The study and practice of writing are integral to a liberal education. The Undergraduate Writing Center at Ashland University helps undergraduate students in all disciplines become more mindful, effective, and confident writers. We believe that writing is not only a necessary tool for communication but also a means of discovery and knowledge-making.
True to Ashland University’s goal of providing a transformative learning experience, shaping graduates who work, serve, and lead with integrity, the Writing Center offers:
trained, supportive peer writing assistants who work one-on-one with undergraduate students in all disciplines and at all levels of ability
trained, supportive peer writing assistants who work one-on-one with students in undergraduate writing-intensive courses across the curriculum
reference materials about academic writing, for use by students and faculty
convenient access to our resources on campus and online
teaching support for faculty across the curriculum through in-class assistance, targeted workshops, and frequent communication
teaching, learning, and leadership opportunities for its student workers
a comfortable and technologically up-to-date facility for students to use for writing projects
a schedule that accommodates students’ needs as much as possible
The Role of the Ashland University Writing Assistants
Writing Assistants are sophomore, junior, and senior students hired on recommendation from professors across campus to work in the Writing Center as writing advisors for courses they have successfully completed. The WAs are skilled writers representing a variety of majors/minors and core courses; they also serve as lab assistants for English 110, a one-hour-credit class taken concurrently with English 101 & 102.
Student Writing Assistants are excellent writers across the disciplines who have been recommended by multiple faculty members who know their work and character. Their role in the Writing Center is to:
discuss handouts and help students understand assignments
explain how to develop a thesis, engage with texts, and work through a draft
support students in the improvement of documentation, grammar, and punctuation
offer advice and assistance on drafting, revising, and polishing a paper
work with students and faculty to encourage students to improve student writing
develop a valid tutoring philosophy and practice
exercise empathetic leadership and guidance in working with students
build personal communication and leadership skills
Student Learning Outcomes of the University Writing Center
Students should read closely:
- Their own texts
- Reference Materials
- Review Materials
Students should inquire critically:
- Into their own arguments, claims, evidence, and warrants
- Into the qualifications and intentions of reference material authors
- Into their own habits and processes
- Into the relationships between perspectives within a topic
Students should thoughtfully discuss their writing:
- By describing for themselves and others their purposes and goals in writing
- By describing for Writing Center staff their intended focuses for sessions
- By articulating both strengths and weaknesses in their writing products
- By articulating both strengths and weaknesses in their writing processes
Students’ writing processes should continue to develop:
- Through conscious decision making in progress
- Through breaking down the writing process into manageable stages
- Through informed choices about adjusting the stages of the writing process that are not working
- Through conscious engagement with increasingly complex writing tasks and subjects
- Students’ written products should continue to improve:
- By successful engagement with increasingly complex topics and arguments
- By demonstrating greater control over syntax and mechanics
- By demonstrating control over increasingly diverse forms/genres
- By indicating a greater sense of an author communicating with an audience with care and craft.
How the Writing Center Embodies Ashland University’s Core Values
Accent on the Individual
Pledges the best individual and collective efforts to challenge and encourage each member of the university within a supportive community.
Our one-on-one peer writing assistance enables each undergraduate the chance to be heard, valued, and supported as an individual.
Spirituality and Faith
Affirms Christian values as a core element of the University's institutional identity, emphasizing faith in God, moral integrity and respect for the diversity of values and faith of each person in a community of learning.
Our individualized support of students from all faiths is at the center of what we do.
We create a community of learning through the individualized support we provide.
We practice and model moral integrity through academic integrity policies.
Promotes integrity, self-discipline, responsibility, compassion, leadership, service and good citizenship.
By encouraging each student to take ownership over the writing process, we empower students to learn responsibly. We emphasize the essentials of academic integrity as it applies to writing. We help students to learn to not only write better, but how to be better citizens in the classroom, by modeling appropriate classroom, professional, and civic behavior. Our writing assistants learn the value of service to their peers and to the academic community as well as practice compassion as they assist students who may be struggling with their assignments.
Supports free, open and critical inquiry for both students and faculty necessary for intellectual and professional development.
Students are not told how to write their papers. Instead, students are supported as they invent, outline, research, paraphrase, evaluate, infer, formulate, originate, write, and revise.
Excellence in Teaching
Emphasizes teaching supported by research and scholarship as the University's central responsibility.
The Writing Center is an extension of the teaching students receive in the classroom. We support and amplify excellent teaching, as well as provide supplemental instruction through tutoring.