Take the Class

To become consultants at the University Writing Center, you will first take ENG-W 397/597: Writing Center Theory & Practice, a class designed to examine the techniques of consulting with writers, as well as the various theories that guide and inform consulting. The course focuses on the practical components of writing center work and how writing center and composition theories can be applied to a variety of settings, including but not limited to college, middle school, high school, professional, and other community settings.

For more details about the enrolling in the course, contact Director Dr. Marilee Brooks-Gillies at mbrooksg@iupui.edu.

This course emphasizes student-centered pedagogies, which ask consultants-in-training to consider their various identity positions in relation to the identities and experiences of writers who visit the UWC. To mentor student writers, consultants must be advocates who work across difference and see various modes of being in the world as assets not as limitations.

Course topics include writing process, collaborative learning, approaches to consulting, consultant roles, consulting strategies for multiple populations of students (including but not limited to multilingual writers, first-generation students, returning students), language diversity in writing centers, neurodiversity in writing centers, the use of technology and multimodal composing in writing centers, online consulting, and assessment and research in writing centers. The course is guided by contemporary composition and learning theories that influence writing center work. As part of the class, students do weekly observations and co-consultations to experience how the UWC works in practice.

At the end of the semester, students are invited to apply to be writing consultants for the following semester. The full undergraduate job description here and the graduate job description here. Questions about job requirements can be sent to UWC Director Dr. Marilee Brooks-Gillies at mbrooksg@iupui.edu.

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“The training course (W397) prompted me to think deeply about social issues (oppression, equity, power) and created space to unlearn and relearn many of the narratives I had unconsciously internalized. More importantly, the course allowed me to learn about and embrace my sociocultural identities and transformed the way I value and look at human relationships.” -Varshini Balaji, class of 2020