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Writing Tutoring FAQ

About Writing Tutoring and Support

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Back to the ARC Writing Support Home


Still have questions?  Call us at 310.338.2847, or email us at


How long is a writing tutoring session?

  • A writing tutoring session is 30 minutes.

Are writing tutoring sessions 1-on-1 or shared with other students?

  • All writing tutoring sessions are 1-on-1 between a student and peer tutor; you will receive personal attention and advice.

What's the difference between writing drop-ins, writing tutoring by appointment, and writing labs? 

The duration and style of the tutoring session does not change.

  • A drop-in requires no previous arrangement: you come in when you need us. The only time you'll wait is if all available tutors are already with a student.  These take place primarily in the evening library hours and during finals week.
  • An appointment can be made at any time during the regular semester schedule. Your tutor will have 30 minutes set aside just for you.
  • A Writing Lab (ENGL 115) is a series of regular, weekly appointments (on a set day/time) with the same tutor that earns you 1 unit of credit. See below for how to sign up!

How do I make an appointment, and when are appointments available?

  • To schedule an appointment, please come in person to the ARC office (Daum Hall) or call 310-338-2847.  Some writing tutoring by appointment is always available Monday - Friday.  Please review our "Writing Support" page for more information about this semester's writing hours, or "Tutoring" to see all subject offerings.   

Can I have more than one 30 minute appointment a week?

  • You may schedule up to two sessions per day, three times per week, for a maximum total of six sessions per week.
  • If you need additional support, please see Ann Stenglein.

What should I expect in a writing tutoring session?

  • After greeting and introductions, your tutor will ask you about your paper and about the specifics of the assignment and your concerns. Depending on where you are in the drafting process, you'll work on generating ideas, or you'll be asked to read your paper out loud to the tutor.
  • Next, the two of you will discuss your paper, and your tutor will then address your concerns and offer advice. If your paper is in its early stages, you might find yourselves working on its thesis, organization, development, or a variety of other issues. If it's in its final revision, sentence-level concerns such as style or grammar can be addressed. 
  • At the end of the session, your tutor will encourage you to come back if you feel the paper needs more work, or if you want to bring in the next draft. We hope you make the ARC a regular stop for all your papers.

How do I register for a Writing Lab? 

The University Writing Lab is available for Fall 2014!
Remember, you can STILL make appointments for writing tutoring throughout the semester if you are not in a lab.

If You're Enrolled In . . .  Register For . . .
Fall 2014 CRN For Registration
Any LMU course(s) with many writing assignments      ENGL 115 lab  45993

Two Steps to Complete Registration:

  • Step 1:  Register on PROWL as you would any other class. If you are NOT registered on PROWL by the end of the first week, you must do the following:
    • Print a General Petition form
    • Make an appointment with Ann Stenglein, ARC Writing Programs Coordinator, by contacting the Academic Resource Center (Daum Hall, 2nd floor, 310-338-2847). Bring your form to the appointment.
    • After receiving a signature from Ann, take your General Petition to your Dean's Office.
    • After receiving a signature from your Dean's Office, drop off the completed form at the Registrar's Office (VDA 150).
  • Step 2:  Once you are registered in the class, call or come in to the Academic Resource Center (Daum Hall, 2nd floor, 310-338-2847) to set up your weekly appointment time with a writing tutor for the semester.

Prepare to set your appointment by:

  • Reviewing your syllabi to determine when your drafts are commonly due; for example, drafts in your Philosophy course may always be due on Mondays. We suggest setting your lab appointment one or two days before your regular draft deadlines.
  • Looking at your weekly schedule to ensure you are able to arrive on time and stay the entire 30 minute appointment.

Writing lab appointments begin the third week of the semester on Monay, September 8, 2014, so you must have your appointment set by the end of the first week, Friday, August 29, 2014.

Since the University Writing Lab (English 115) can be taken with any writing intensive courses, can I take it more than once?

  • Yes, you can take ENGL 115 up to 3 times.

Do I need to make an appointment for help with research or documentation (like MLA format)?

  • You decide. we believe it would be worthwhile to have a full tutoring session: you can discuss research and documentation long with other concerns during your meeting. 
  • We also know you're busy: that's why you can stop in the ARC to grab a handout or two on the go. If you need a quick resource for thesis statements or APA formatting, we've got you covered. Just tell the receptionist what you're looking for, or ask an available writing tutor.
  • You can also find most of our tools online at our Writing LibGuide.

My paper is due within the next two hours. Can I pop-in or submit my paper online to be edited for me?

  • In a nutshell – no, we don’t proofread papers. BUT, we will teach you strategies to identify your errors. The tutor will ask you to read your paper out loud and will point out grammatical, mechanical and stylistic problems and then explain the concepts behind them. If similar problems appear later in the paper, the tutor will ask you to correct them. If your paper is long, there usually is not enough time to finish it.
  • The emphasis at the ARC is on teaching you strategies to become a better writer such as developing your thoughts more clearly and forcefully and advancing your writing style. If you come a few days before the paper is due, we can better work our magic.

I heard you have a contest for papers work-shopped in the University Writing Lab. Is this true?

  • Yes. The ARC has an annual writing contest showcasing the essays written by students who take our 1-unit writing lab in the fall semester. The winning students each receive a $50 gift certificate. This writing contest is only open to those registered in the University Writing Lab.

Who are the writing tutors? What are their qualifications?

  • Writing tutors are students at LMU who have proven academic success and have been recommended by LMU faculty for their writing skills. Additionally, each tutor must go through a 1-unit, semester-long training course to become accredited jointly by the College Reading and Learning Association (CRLA) and the National Tutoring Association. In addition, writing tutors must complete 10 more hours of training in their second year of tutoring.



Still have questions?  Call us at 310.338.2847, or email us at