The Georgetown Writing Center is committed to serving students from all backgrounds, and is constantly evolving its approach to better meet the needs of our community. Currently, the center oversees six initiatives, all of which are entirely student-led.
We are currently working to strengthen the relationship between the Writing Center and Georgetown’s GSP and CSP students, who make up a community of first-generation and/or low-income students on campus. After interviewing and surveying GSP and CSP students to understand their Writing Center experiences, we have catalyzed new outreach initiatives and connections with FGLI-supporting university faculty and staff. Ultimately, we hope to strengthen GSP and CSP student involvement in the center, both as tutees and tutors. So far, we have piloted satellite Writing Center office hours in the GSP lounge, and plan to conduct outreach through GSP- and CSP-established programs to raise awareness of and comfortability with the Writing Center for GSP and CSP students.
We are working on further developing the Writing Center’s data collection efforts through the creation of a semesterly efficacy survey. Through the survey, we hope to assess the effectiveness of the Center’s current client services as well as identify potential areas of improvement. The pilot survey to recap the Fall 2022 semester was released this past January, and the results will be promptly analyzed and reviewed internally. Likewise, we hope to make the survey a recurring effort at the Center, so there are plans to release another one following the Spring 2023 semester.
We are currently piloting the Writing Center’s first-ever annual report. The document will strive to give a holistic review of the Center’s 2022-2023 operations. Information such as the Center’s guiding principles, staff and administration, client services, and recent projects will be included in the report. We hope it will serve as a useful tool for those looking to learn more about the Center as well as an appreciative catalog of the amazing work our tutors have completed.
The Writing Center is currently working on revamping the website’s resources tab to make it more accessible to professors, prospective tutors, clients, and the overall student body. By compiling a range of resources – developed both externally and internally – we hope to better inform our key stakeholders about Georgetown’s writing culture and our role within it. As a first step, we seek to develop an overarching framework for organizing information that optimizes the Writing Center engagement with our community via website. Ultimately, we intend for the resources page to be dynamic, updated alongside changes to the field and our student body.
In partnership with the Georgetown University Graduate Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, the Writing Center holds workshops that cover various stages of the writing process. The workshops are tailored towards first-generation higher education students, international students, multilingual students, and students who have been out of school for some time (for instance, we have had multiple students who previously served in the military). The workshop series begins with a general overview of expectations in graduate level writing. They then transition to more specific aspects of writing as a process, such as research techniques, outlining, editing, and revising. The workshops begin with discussing where students’ current knowledge level and awareness of the day’s topic currently stand. After, we dive into particular techniques and strategies students can employ in the respective stage of the writing process. We also encourage students to bring work from their classes in order to apply what we have learned that day to their assignments. Ultimately, these workshops aim to equip graduate students with the skills and confidence required to succeed in writing at the graduate level.
Writing Center Staff are collaborating with professors of disability studies, the Academic Resource Center, and members of the disability community to develop a document that would serve as a statement of our commitment to accessibility at the Writing Center to ensure that all students at Georgetown feel comfortable attending sessions with us. We also want to hold the Writing Center accountable in the future for expanding our pedagogy course to integrate questions of ability, disability, and accessibility into the curriculum and by extension our tutoring practice and ethos.