Writing Center Policies

  • All appointments in The Writing Center are ONLINE at this time and are available in 30-minute increments. 
  • TWC Consultants can help students with reading, writing, critical thinking, researching, documenting sources, avoiding plagiarism, proofreading and editing strategies, and ESL-specific needs in any course across the curriculum. Consultants can also assist with personal statements and internship essays as students begin or continue their grad school application process. (Important note: consultants don't edit your work for you, but they will help you learn to improve your skills)
  • Appointments are available to be booked 30 minutes or more in advance. At this time, no last-minute appointments are available.
  • During the first 11 weeks of the semester, students may make two, half-hour appointments per day & four max per week. These appointments may not be back-to-back. To request a second appointment in a day (not back-to-back), students must ask the consultant during the first appointment.  During the first 11 weeks, the booking window is 2 weeks in advance. During the final four weeks of each semester, these limits are tightened to one half-hour appointment per day and two half-hour appointments max per week, and a one-week booking window is followed.
  • Students arriving 5 minutes late to online sessions will be marked as "missed." Missed appointments will lead to forfeiture of the remainder of the original appointment and any options for a second appointment in the same day. At any point in the semester, three missed appointments will lead to automatic account deactivation; in that case, contact TWC Coordinator, Cindy Spires, at spirescc@udmercy.edu to schedule a virtual meeting to discuss. During the final four weeks of the term, accounts disabled due to excessive missed appointments will not be re-enabled.
  • Students are responsible for keeping track of their appointment dates and times. TWC appointments begin on time and end at the 25-minute mark. Brief appointments are not available at this time.
  • Because TWC is using an online appointment system that is video-, audio- and text-enabled, students should expect to activate their web cameras and microphones upon entering sessions. Refresh the browser once the video/audio has been activated, and if technical issues arise during the session you can either log out & back in again or try another browser (that usually takes care of it).
  • In the case of WIFI issues on the part of the student or the consultant, or if the software system malfunctions leaving the session incomplete, the student is expected to reschedule the appointment. TWC's protocol for audio/video issues is to try for a maximum of 5 minutes to make it work and then default to text-only. In the case of system malfunction where text-only can't be employed, if the session does not successfully connect the student and consultant within the first 5 minutes of the scheduled session, the student should plan to reschedule the appointment. The Writing Center is not responsible for WIFI or system malfunctions that derail sessions.
  • Appointments are subject to being moved between consultants (for the same time slot) at the TWC Coordinator's discretion.  In the case of an emergency cancellation, students will be contacted by phone or email to reschedule. Having an accurate phone number and email in your account profile with TWC will ensure timely communications.
  • Proof of attendance for online appointments with TWC comes in the form of screen shots taken by you, the student, during the final minutes of each online session.  At the end of the session, the student and consultant should exchange a TEXT CHAT that will show a time stamp; that screen shot should then be provided by the student directly to his or her faculty.  Faculty are aware that TWC considers a complete session to last 25 out of the 30 minutes of the session.  Any student found to be academically dishonest in the use of proof of attendance will lose TWC privileges.
  • If students are receiving class credit for a visit with TWC, the session must be about a project for that class. 
  • During sessions, students should remain engaged and not on other programs, tasks or devices.  TWC sessions should be done only on laptops or desktops. Use of mobile devices is not advised as the system does not function properly.  
  • TWC sessions are for matriculated students at University of Detroit Mercy. 
  • Questions should be directed to The Writing Center Coordinator, Cindy Spires, at spirescc@udmercy.edu.


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    How Writing Center sessions work

    In-person appointments: Not available at this time.

    Online Appointments: Students are actively engaged for 30 minutes with the consultant. The student is able to paste a draft into our online program and the consultant and student will be able to use video/audio as well as instant message one another about ways to improve the draft. How to prepare: Have a digital copy of your draft and necessary materials (assignment sheet/rubric, textbook, etc.) with you to refer to during the session.

    To schedule an online appointment, visit: The Writing Center's Scheduling Website

    The Writing Center does not provide "drop off" services — all sessions are active engagements between the student and the consultant.

    For questions regarding our services, email The Writing Center Coordinator Cindy Spires at spirescc@udmercy.edu.