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Welcome Back! September 19, 2013


The UCWbL is BACK!

It’s a new quarter at DePaul, and we just wanted to take a moment and remind you of a few items as we start getting ramped up for autumn!

-Appointments at the UCWbL are for everyone! Whether you are working on a resume, a poem, a research paper, or anything in between, the UCWbL wants to help you with any kind of writing you have.
-Appointments at the UCWbL aren’t just for struggling writers. We are happy to help even writers who feel confident in their work. It always helps to get another pair of eyes on a piece!
-Appointments at the UCWbL are for creative writers too! Believe me, there are so many people here who would love to get their hands on a poem, short story, or memoir!
-Get involved at the UCWbL! There are so many great opportunities for everyone at the UCWbL. Join a writing group, attend a Walk and Talk with the collaborative for multilingual writing and research, and check out Scrawl Radio every Friday starting next week! Really, that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

If you have any questions about the UCWbL please visit depaul.edu/writing or leave a comment here! If you’re new, welcome to DePaul, and if you’re coming back, we are glad to see you again. You look great today, everyone.


Network, Collaborate, Learn: The 2012-13 Peer Tutor & Mentor Summit October 9, 2012

The 2012-2013 Peer Tutor & Mentor Summit was this past Friday, and as usual, it delivered on its promise: tutors and mentors from across DePaul’s programs had a chance to share their strategies, goals, career advice, and more.  It was also a reminder of the vastness of DePaul’s offerings for its students: in attendance were mentors from Veteran’s Affairs, tutors from the Collaborative for Multilingual Writing and Research (CMWR) and the International Student Experience Exchange, advisors from the Career Center, and many others.  Indeed, the array of programs at DePaul is every bit as diverse as DePaul’s students themselves, and so also were the rewards that the summiteers took with them. (more…)


Social-ize Your Writing Center (with hints from our social media guide) May 12, 2012

We’re always encouraging our colleagues to share the awesome work they do through our social media outlets.  If you’re an UCWbLer looking for the best channel to broadcast a new project, or if you belong to another writing center and want some tips on connecting to your students through social media, you could do worse than check out our Quick User’s Guide!


CMWR’s Friday Forum is Back! February 24, 2012

The CMWR’s Friday Forum is up and running for Winter Quarter, and this conversation-based group reads through a short text on different aspects of American culture and analyzes it together. Last week we read an article from DePaul’s student newspaper called “G8/NATO summits, security could cost up to $65 million,” a topic that is especially relevant for us Chicagoans, and invoked great discussion on the impacts that the summits will have on the city. (more…)


Taking Another Look At Editing as Tutoring February 14, 2012

When I first signed up for my literary editing course, I didn’t really think it would have much in common with my tutoring job.  I mean, we’re taught from the beginning to be non-invasive tutors, and definitely not editors.  We don’t want to risk usurping the writer’s voice or helping them too much.  However, it’s inevitable that in talking about what makes good writing, you learn a thing or two about tutoring.  It turns out that editing is deeply entrenched in the writer/reader relationship, just as tutoring is.  That relationship is a great jumping-off point for considering how the two disciplines are related, and what we can learn from editors to become better tutors. (more…)


Outpost and Short Tutorials: Challenges, Strategies, and Pitfalls February 13, 2012

While it’s nice to finish a conference in under thirty minutes and return to meebo until the next student arrives at the outpost, short tutorials take a certain degree of skill to lead effectively. I’ve been working at the Loop campus outpost this quarter and while business is slow at times, the short conferences that do happen can be challenging.  (more…)


The Importance of Building Rapport: Because Bradley could be your next appointment January 23, 2012

If you haven’t seen it yet, check out the latest episode of The Breakroom on the UCWbL’s youtube page. This video depicts and discusses the importance of building rapport with writers during conferences, a practice that can be easily overlooked when a tutor or fellow is eager to ‘set the agenda’ and get to the task at hand. (more…)


Tutor Training: Technological approaches considered January 16, 2012

As a new tutor with one quarter under my belt, it was interesting to see how much time and preparation is put into the reopening of the UCWbL after Winter break. On January 6, peer tutors, writing fellows, receptionists, and directors alike assembled in the Lincoln Park Student Center for the annual UCWbL staff retreat. Over the course of the day, we discussed our goals for Winter quarter and some of our past tutoring experiences. (more…)


When in doubt, ask a question! November 10, 2011

One tutoring technique I find useful, whether the appointment is written or face-to-face, is asking a question as a way of overcoming an obstacle. It is not unusual to encounter a sentence that has multiple meanings, or is so overwritten that the meaning has become obscured, or just doesn’t make any sense at all. In these instances, it is perfectly acceptable, even advisable, to say “You know, this could be read a couple of different ways” or “I’m really not sure what you mean here, what did you intend?” Not only does this open up the possibility for exchange, it removes me from the position of having to be in complete control of the paper. I don’t have to know everything. Each session is a process, and the client and I discover that process together. (more…)


What is YOUR favorite Chicago used bookstore? November 9, 2011

With the closing of Borders, it’s starting to seem like there are more used bookstores in Chicago than first-hand bookstores. Certainly used bookstores ARE “green” — keeping paper out of landfills — and are exemplars of recycling — paper, of course, but ideas and images too. I love prowling through used bookstores. Do you?  (more…)