Writing Center Policies and Procedures
Planning to Visit the Writing Center?
Register for an Account
All current UMD undergraduates who wish to schedule an appointment or see a tutor during walk-in hours must register for an account. Register online.
Please ensure that you do not have multiple accounts with the Writing Center. If a Writing Center administrator discovers that you have multiple accounts, one or all of your accounts may be disabled. Failure to register for an account may result in an account being created for you. Information from the UMD directory will be utilized in order to create an account on your behalf.
To book an appointment use the online scheduling system.
You may choose a 30-minute or a 60-minute face-to-face appointment or an online appointment. Please refer to our online tutoring page that describes our two types of online tutoring.
During our peak periods (just before midterms and finals), we highly recommend that you make an appointment several days in advance.
You may schedule one appointment per day, and up to two appointments per week. You are welcome to return during library and evening walk-in hours as often as you’d like. Remember, because library and evening hours are walk-in only, there may be a wait when you arrive.
If you cannot make your scheduled appointment, please cancel your appointment online by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note that three missed appointments without prior cancellation will result in your account being disabled for the duration of the semester. If your account is disabled, you will not be able to schedule an appointment and must come to walk-in hours to meet with a tutor.
Appointments are neither necessary nor available during walk-in hours. All evening hours are walk-in only, operating on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note that we cannot guarantee 30 or 60 minute appointments during walk-in hours.
The Writing Partners Program matches ENGL101 students with the same Writing Center tutor for 5-10 consecutive sessions during the semester. Current ENGL101 students at the University of Maryland, College Park are eligible to participate on a first-come, first-served basis. Students will be enrolled on a first-come, first-served basis and matched with a tutor based on schedule availability.
Students commit to attending the first five consecutive appointments and then will have the option to continue for another five consecutive sessions. If a student misses two appointments, all pending Writing Partner appointments may be cancelled and students will no longer participate in the program.
The administrative team will make every reasonable effort to ensure that the Writing Center’s services are accessible to every student.
Group assignments. The Writing Center has a conference room available for group tutoring sessions.
American Sign Language interpreters are welcome to attend your tutoring session with you.
Bilingual tutors are available. Please check with the receptionist or an administrator for details.
An accessible cubicle is available for use at the main Writing Center location in 1205 Tawes Hall as well as in Mckeldin Library.
The Writing Center works with current UMD undergraduates only. The majority of our tutors are current UMD undergraduates who are trained to offer tutoring support to their peers on undergraduate writing. Therefore, you will be better supported by the writing fellows at the Graduate Writing Center, who are trained to work with graduate students.
Alumni of the University of Maryland, College Park may visit the Writing Center one time after graduation.
While at the Writing Center
While we welcome all students, celebrate diversity, and appreciate spirited debate, we reserve the right to request that disruptive or disrespectful students leave the Writing Center or leave an online session immediately for any or all of the following reasons:
- Disrespectful language and/or images
- Disruptive or confrontational language and/or behavior
- Misuse of Writing Center resources
Students who choose to disregard Writing Center policies may face any or all of the following consequences:
- Denied access to meeting with a specific tutor
- Communication from the Writing Center to your instructor or a campus official
- Temporary or permanent deactivation of your Writing Center account
The consultants at the Writing Center respect your privacy. Content discussed during sessions remains confidential, unless the subject matter includes material that suggests physical harm to self or others.
The Writing Center follows the University’s Code of Academic Integrity.
The Writing Center does not enforce any requirements to visit us or use our services. If you have been required to visit the Writing Center, for example by your instructor or by the Office of Student Conduct, then that requirement must be resolved by you, your instructor, and/or the Office of Student Conduct, in accordance with our regular, available services. It is the student’s responsibility to schedule all required appointments and to request notes of confirmation.
If the Office of Student Conduct has required that you visit the Writing Center, please take a few moments to read the information. Students required to visit the Writing Center by the OSC should work with a tutor in-person or in a live online session.
Should you have a complaint
Students are welcome to raise complaints individually or in groups, if that would make them feel more comfortable. However, individual students should feel just as empowered to raise a complaint.
If a student decides to refer a complaint about a tutoring-related issue, the student should first notify the Writing Center Director or Assistant Director, whose contact information is posted on the website, who will then request to meet with the student in order to discuss the situation. After the meeting, the Director or Assistant Director will meet with the tutor involved to discuss the student’s concerns and craft a resolution plan that is acceptable to all parties.
Depending on the nature of the complaint, the Director or Assistant Director will commit to taking one or more of the following steps:
- meet with all parties involved
- inform all parties if confidentiality cannot be kept, in which case the Director or Assistant Director acts as a mandatory reporter and reports the incident to the Office of Civil Rights and Sexual Misconduct, the UMD police, or the BETA Team
- create a resolution plan
- observe a tutoring session
- refer the student(s) to an appropriate resource on campus for support
The Director or Assistant Director will follow up with the student(s) and tutor within an agreed-upon time frame. All complaints and resolutions will be kept on file in the Writing Center office.
Should students have a complaint against a Writing Center administrator, the appropriate step would be that they speak with the chair or Associate Chair of the English Department.