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Faculty: Frequently Asked Questions

What kinds of students use the Writing Hub?

All kinds! In general, the kind of undergraduate student we see is a “B” student who is looking to improve their writing skills—that is, a strong student writer who is interested in improving. For graduate students, we see graduate writers looking to increase the clarity and effectiveness of their writing, writers looking for support as they work to complete a large writing project, graduate writers who are looking for a reader to give impartial feedback, multilingual writers looking for help with their mechanics, etc.

How do writing consultants work with students?

Writing Hub writing consultants push students to reach their own insights about what works and what can be improved in their writing. Our primary tools are reader’s feedback (e.g. “I really like this topic sentence, it really gives me a clear sense of what you will be arguing here, but I’m not I see how this first piece of evidence relates; can you explain how you see it fitting in this paragraph?) and open questioning (e.g. “So what is it you’re hoping to convey to the reader in this section?”). The conversations that follow from these questions give students new perspectives on their own writing and writing processes.

I’m a TA/professor; do you have promotional materials that I can distribute to my students?

Certainly! We’re happy to provide you with fliers, brochures, and bookmarks. Just send us an email at writinghub@ucsd.edu. If you're interested in having a Writing Hub consultant visit your class, please let us know by filling out our class visit request form

I sent a student to work with the Writing Hub; why are there still errors in the student’s document?

The Writing Hub’s goal is to help students to develop as writers, editors, and proofreaders of their own work. We do not expect students to leave our sessions with an “error free” document; we expect that they will leave with new approaches for strengthening their writing and editing processes for all future writing projects.

Will a writing consultant proofread or edit a student’s work?

Writing Hub writing consultants push students to reach their own insights about what works and what can be improved in their writing. Our primary tools are reader’s feedback (e.g. “I really like this topic sentence, it really gives me a clear sense of what you will be arguing here, but I’m not I see how this first piece of evidence relates; can you explain how you see it fitting in this paragraph?) and open questioning (e.g. “So what is it you’re hoping to convey to the reader in this section?”). The conversations that follow from these questions give students new perspectives on their own writing and writing processes.

Are grammar errors and citations the primary foci of a Writing Hub session?

Writing mentors/consultants prioritize their feedback, and they focus on higher order concerns first. Higher order concerns generally reflect the essentials of successful academic writing, such as having a clear and coherent argument, a logical structure and organization, clear and readable prose, or use of evidence that aligns with the expectations of the assignment or their discipline/field. 

Though we always work to respond to a student’s questions/concerns in the session, lower order issues such as grammar or citations are typically a secondary focus for a Writing Hub session, unless they interfere grievously with the writer’s credibility or comprehensibility.

Do Writing Hub services have any value for advanced writers or students in upper-division coursework?

Yes! We are all developing as writers, and what helps us more than anything is the chance to consider the supportive and honest feedback of an attentive reader. This kind of feedback is what the Writing Hub offers writers.

Can the Writing Hub help my graduate students?

Yes! We offer a range of services for graduate students, and we are happy to work with you to develop graduate-level advising practices that improve graduate student learning and productivity.

Still have questions?

Email us at writinghub@ucsd.edu. We are happy to answer any questions you may have!