Policies and FAQ

Online and face-to-face appointments are 45 minutes long, and you can schedule a session up to one week in advance by registering an account with our scheduling service (WC Online). If the schedule is full on a particular date, you can join the Waiting List by selecting the clock icon.

How to Join the Waiting List

You can also visit Snell 136 for a walk-in appointment during opening hours.

Policies

Number of Appointments

  • Clients can make up to two appointments per week.
  • Each client is limited to one appointment per day.
    • Note: graduate students working on a dissertation or thesis may request an exception to the one appointment per day policy by e-mailing us at least a week in advance. Read more about that policy exception here.

Missed/Late Appointments

  • If you miss two appointments, you will automatically be locked out of the Writing Center scheduling system and unable to book appointments. If you are locked out, contact neuwritingcenter@gmail.com. If you are locked out twice in a semester, you will no longer be able to use the Writing Center that semester.
  •  If you are more than 15 minutes late to your appointment, the Writing Center staff reserves the right to mark your appointment as a “no show” and/or give your appointment to someone else.

Please cancel at least 4 hours in advance. Appointments that have not been cancelled at least 4 hours before the start of the appointment will be considered “no shows.” Clients who need a last-minute cancellation should call the Writing Center at 617-373-4549.

Frequently Asked Questions
What do you do at the Writing Center?
We work with all things writing.
We offer free professional support for all of your writing endeavors. Students attend the writing center at all stages in the writing process from brainstorming and outlining to draft revision and final submission. These could include:

Understanding a Writing Assignment or Prompt
Conceptualizing and Brainstorming
Planning and Outlining
Research and Citations
Organizing and Restructuring Writing
Drafting and Revising
Composing Better Introductions and Conclusions
Utilizing Effective Editing Techniques
Developing Reading and Note-Taking Strategies
Document Design and incorporating images
Developing Presentations
Professional Writing (Cover Letters and Resumes)

We serve as a cross-disciplinary audience for your writing.
The Writing Center is staffed by Northeastern University writing instructors, as well as graduate students and undergraduate students from a variety of disciplines, including English, Psychology, Film Studies, Philosophy, Mechanical Engineering, Environmental Studies, and more. We can be an active audience for your writing and to help you clarify your purpose and goals.

We support your writing process; we do not replace your Professor or TA.

While we can help you understand your assignment instructions and talk about general clarity, we advise you to see your instructor for discussions about content specific questions. We also cannot provide any estimates or feedback about grades.

Can I drop off my paper and have someone edit it?
No, you cannot drop off your paper and have someone fix grammar and formatting for you. All of our appointments are “synchronous,” meaning you’ll meet with a consultant one-to-one and work on your writing together. We believe that the writer should always be in the “driver’s seat” when formulating ideas and working on the paper.

That said, our consultants would be happy to help you improve your editing and proofreading skills as well as your knowledge of word choices, style, and grammatical concepts. This process can be time-consuming, so you may need to make multiple appointments well in advance of due dates depending on the length of your writing project.

Where are you located?

We’re in 412 Holmes Hall and 136 Snell Library. We’ve posted directions and how-to-find-us videos here!

Who can use the Writing Center

We’re open to anyone from the Northeastern University community.

We work with faculty members, staff, undergraduate and graduate students from all academic disciplines as well as alumni. We work with both multilingual writers and native speakers of English.

If you are a Northeastern alum, you can use the Writing Center as long as you use a Northeastern email address to access our appointment system. Alumni who graduated in 2013 and later maintain access to their husky email accounts. Alumni who graduated prior to 2013 can create @alumni.neu.edu email forwarding accounts through their Husky Nation alumni account.

What should I bring to my appointment?
Collect any materials you are using: your assignment sheet, your instructor’s prompt, any drafts you’ve completed, feedback from your instructor or peers, readings you used to complete the assignment. These will help the consultant to better understand your writing task.

Bring paper or digital copies of your materials. It helps to have digital copies of drafts and assignment instructions already downloaded and ready on your device.

Prepare an “agenda” for your session. What questions do you want to ask your consultant? What issues do you plan to focus on? Please arrive a few minutes before your appointment begins to ensure your consultation can start on time.

My appointment is online. What should I do?
First of all, is an online appointment best for you? Keep in mind that most of our chat-based online sessions are ideal for shorter assignments where you and your consultant can focus on a specific goal. If you need to work through ideas and structure for longer papers, you may benefit from an in person session. That said, our online consultations are a great way to ask questions of our tutors if you need that flexibility. Some consultants are also available for voice/video online sessions.

Joining Online Appointments
You’ll meet your consultant online at your appointment time. Log into https://neu.mywconline.com at your appointment time and click on your appointment to pull up your appointment form. In your appointment form, click on “Start or Join Online Consultation.

You will then be taken to a whiteboard and chat box. You and your consultant can type in both the chat box and the whiteboard or use the video/voice function to talk about your essay. Copy and paste your paper in the whiteboard.

Technical Problems with Online Appointments
If you are having problems joining your online consultation, sign out completely and then sign back in. You might also try another browser. If this does not solve the problem, call the Writing Center front desk: 617-373-4549. If your appointment is after hours while Holmes Hall 412 is closed, e-mail neuwritingcenter@gmail.com.

If your consultant is having issues with the software, he/she will send you an e-mail.

What should I do if I need help fast?

Visit us during Snell 136’s opening hours. This location is available for walk-in consultations.

Join the Waiting List for an online or face-to-face appointment at Holmes Hall 412 (sometimes clients cancel, and our system will notify you of a spot).

Check the International Tutoring Center (088 Snell Library) if you are eligible to use this service.

Will my instructor find out what happened at my Writing Center appointment?

No. Our philosophy is that a consultation is a private matter between the consultant and student and works best when the writer chooses to come. If you would like to show your instructor that you used our services, grab a bookmark, flyer, or brochure at the end of your session or send them an e-mail to tell them what you accomplished in your session.

A Note for Faculty
If you are an instructor, we ask that you: (1) not mandate the use of the Writing Center in your course; (2) not ask the Writing Center to provide any reports on your students. You are welcome to recommend the Writing Center by mentioning it in class, passing out flyers, showing this video, or posting a link on Blackboard. One of our directors or specialists can also consult with you or plan a workshop for your class. Find out more on the Resources for Faculty page.