Drop-ins are welcome at the Workshop, but to ensure that a consultant is available, you are encouraged to reserve an appointment. Consultants are trained to work with all writers on any project, but you may want to select a specific consultant based on that person's background. Additional information about our appointment system and policies:
How do I make an appointment?
Other Appointment Information
How do I make an appointment?
- Watch the video above or visit our online scheduling system, WCOnline.
- If you have visited the Workshop before, log in. If you have not visited before, you must register before you are able to make an appointment. Click on "Register for an account" above the log-in box and fill out the form. Your answers are confidential, and you only need to register once to log in on your own to make and cancel appointments.
- Once you are logged in, you will see the available schedule.
- Consultants’ names appear on the left.
- Click on an open (white) appointment time to open an Appointment form. For online appointments, you will see a bolded link to join the session in this window. In-person sessions do not include a link. If you choose an in-person appointment, it will be held in the Writers’ Workshop on the 2nd floor of the Martin Library.
- When the Appointment window opens, choose the duration of your appointment. Using the drop-down menu at the top, select a 30-minute or 60-minute appointment. You must complete the other required information on the form in order to continue. We ask this information to ensure you receive the best possible consultation. This information is considered private and is accessible only to relevant Writers' Workshop staff.
- After completing the form, click "Save Appointment" to finish. Your appointment will now appear on the schedule in gold, and you will receive a reminder email with the date and time.
- Get ready for your appointment! Check our page on preparing for a writing session for more information.
You will receive a reminder email the day before the appointment.
How do I cancel an appointment?
If for any reason you must cancel your appointment, it is always best to do so as far in advance as possible so others know the time slot is available. You may call the Workshop at 218-726-8500 to cancel; however, if there is not a staff member available, your cancellation may be missed and you could be marked as a no-show. If your account is marked with three no-show appointments, you will have to make future appointments in person because the online system will not allow you to reserve appointment times for the remainder of the semester. The most effective cancellation method is through the scheduling software:
- Log into WCOnline
- Locate your appointment on the schedule.
- Select your appointment to open the reservation window.
- In the reservation window, scroll to the bottom and locate the red box labeled "Cancel this Appointment"
Your appointment is now canceled.
What kinds of questions or papers can I bring to the Workshop? What should I bring with me?
Our writing consultants are available for collaborative conversations on any number of topics. For example, they can help you:
- overcome writer's block, choose a topic, or understand a writing assignment
- focus a thesis statement, develop a writing plan, or review a rough draft
- identify strategies to organize, clarify, and concisely state your ideas
- interpret evaluation criteria, comments from instructors, or feedback from peer reviewers
- avoid plagiarism and correctly use APA, MLA, or other citation styles
- recognize error patterns in punctuation and grammar and develop strategies to fix them on your own
- work on a variety of projects, including lab reports, personal statements, resumes, application materials, grant proposals, theses, and Plan B projects, research papers, and more
We’re here to listen and have a conversation that will help you meet your writing goals. The writing is always yours; we just provide a comfortable atmosphere to talk and learn about it.
What should I do to prepare for my appointment?
The Writers' Workshop is here to help support you and your writing needs. However, there are a few things that you can do to help make your time with us more effective.
- Locate the assignment sheet, guidelines, or instructions for your project. Bring copies of these instructions to an in-person session, or have them available online.
- For in-person sessions, bring two (2) printed paper copies of your piece of writing or have the latest draft ready to share electronically with your consultant. For online sessions, be sure you have the latest draft ready to share with your consultant.
- For longer writing pieces, consider working on a particular section or smaller part of the paper.
- If you have specific questions or concerns, jot them down before your appointment.
- Review your draft beforehand; find the mistakes or errors that you already know so we can help you improve beyond that.
While we are happy to help you learn strategies for finding punctuation and grammar errors in your work, the Workshop consultants do not spend entire sessions proofreading papers nor do they edit papers left at the Workshop to be picked up at a later time. Sessions are designed to be collaborative and interactive, inviting participation from both the writer and the consultant.
What will happen during a session with a consultant?
If you have an in-person session, you will check-in at our reception desk located by the quotation wall in the back right corner of the Learning Commons (second floor of the Martin Library). The person at the front desk will introduce you to your consultant, or you will simply find the consultant you will be working with by looking for the person’s name, which will be displayed on the tables in the Writers’ Workshop.
If you have an online session, you will navigate to our schedule at your appointment time, locate your appointment in gold, and click to open it. You will then click the “Join your session” link, which will open a Zoom window. Your writing consultant will admit you to the appointment from a Zoom “waiting room.”
Whether in-person or online, the session will begin with the consultant asking questions about what you are working on. It’s important for the consultant to know the purpose of the piece of writing, the audience, and the directions you've been given if any (e.g., length, format, etc.). If you have an assignment sheet or other materials, you will go over that information with the consultant.
Next, you will work with the consultant to establish an agenda for your session. Through discussion about the piece of writing you’re currently working on, together you will decide what area(s) need attention. We tailor each session to your goals and needs, but consultants will typically address issues such as content, organization, argument, clarity, and structure before addressing issues such as style, grammar, punctuation, and documentation. Consultants work on all of these issues, but it only makes sense to work on the “big picture” before dealing with the details. You don’t want to spend a session working on punctuating a paragraph that you ultimately decide to delete from your final draft.
Often consultants will ask you to read your paper aloud or they will read it to you so both of you “hear” the paper. During the process, either you or the consultant may stop to discuss points, or you may jot down notes as reminders of areas that need attention. You should be prepared to be the one writing on your printed copy. The consultants avoid doing so because, after all, it is your piece of writing.
The consultants are friendly, experienced, and well trained. Their goal is to work together with you to discover strategies that will help you produce the best piece of writing you are capable of producing. Each session is unique because it is based on you and your needs.
After your session, the consultant will send you a summary report via email to remind you of what the two of you worked on and any writing strategies you discussed. After the session, you’ll want time to revise your piece of writing. That’s why it’s important to see a consultant well in advance of the project's due date.
Your session is confidential; no one but the consultants and you, the writer, have access to these reports.