Consultation FAQ

What happens in a writing consultation? 

A writing consultation is a 45-minute appointment in which you meet with a writing consultant to go over written work or assignments. The writing consultant will begin by asking you questions about your writing goals and concerns, and then both of you will craft an agenda for the session. Be ready to be an active participant in the session; writing consultants will not complete your work or offer ideas regarding writing content. For details about what to expect in in-person, eTutoring, and online consultations, please visit Writing Consultations.

What are your norms and policies about consultations? 

Please visit this page for details about our norms and policies.

Is there a cost? 

No! The Writing Center is provided at no additional cost to UMB students.

What sort of writing can I bring into the Writing Center? 

Please visit this page for a comprehensive list of our services.

How do I make an appointment? 

To make an appointment, please create an account in WCOnline, our online scheduler. For a step-by-step guide, watch this video tutorial

What if I have to cancel my consultation? 

Consultations may be canceled up to 24 hours before the appointment.

If you fail to show up for an appointment or to provide 24 hours notice of cancelation for a writing consultation, it will be counted as a no-show. After two no-shows, you will not be able to make appointments with us for the rest of the semester.

How early in the writing process should I schedule an appointment? 

Our consultants are able to meet with you at any stage of the writing process; however, it is best to schedule an appointment early so that you have plenty of time to revise. Appointments can be made up to two weeks in advance but cannot be made for the day the paper is due.

Can the Writing Center proofread or edit my paper? 

Our writing consultants do not edit or proofread. The philosophy of the Writing Center is to help individuals improve their critical thinking, revision, and editing skills rather than just proofreading papers for grammar or spelling errors.

How will we get through my entire paper in 45 minutes? 

We may not, and that's OK! Our writing consultants' job is to provide you with resources and strategies for making informed writing choices and to comment on patterns in your writing. Remember, our mission is to help you become a self-sufficient writer, not to edit or proofread your paper. 

What if I have a learning difference? 

The Writing Center works with all writers of all abilities. Our client registration form and appointment form feature spaces for clients to confidentially disclose any information they would like our staff to know.

Can my work demonstrate my bilingualism and/or multilingualism? 

Many of the Writing Center's clients identify as bilingual or multilingual. Our consultants are trained to assist clients of all language backgrounds writing in English. We understand languages as sets of practices that are always changing, and our approach involves questioning what we mean when we say "standardized English."

For more information about how we use the terms "multilingual" and "language" in the context of academic writing, see this video unpacking a 2020 article on the myth of a single Standard English. And visit our Anti-racism and Anti-Oppression Writing Resources page for much more. 

Can faculty and staff make appointments? 

The Writing Center's first priority is to serve students, but we do assist faculty and staff with their own writing as we are able. To inquire about our current availability for faculty and staff consultations, please contact the Writing Center directly.