The Coaching Process - Graduate Writing Center

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Meet with a Writing Coach

The Coaching Process

  One of the best ways to improve your writing is to receive regular constructive feedback. GWC coaches assist with any type of assignment, from short papers to dissertations, and can help you face to face or via email. Coaches have the training and experience to help you organize your ideas, structure an argument, understand citation rules, and manage the writing process.

What coaches do:

  • Help you communicate clearly, concisely, and creatively
  • Familiarize you with academic writing standards
  • Help you develop your thoughts and map out a plan
  • Identify your strengths as well as writing patterns that need improvement
    Explain how and when to cite, quote, and paraphrase according to your discipline's style
  • Teach you how to proofread your own work
  • Refer you to more resources specific to your needs

What coaches don't do:

  • Replace the guidance of professors
  • Provide substantive, discipline-specific feedback on content
  • Edit or format papers

How appointments work:

  • Email your written work and assignment instructions to your coach 24 hours in advance for live appointments and 48 hours in advance for asynchronous appointments.
  • With live coaching appointments, you and a coach meet to discuss your ideas, outlines, and drafts, either on campus or virtually via Zoom, MS Teams, or phone.
  • If meeting via Zoom or Teams, your coach will contact you before your appointment with virtual login information.  ​​
  • With asynchronous coaching appointments, the coach emails feedback on your written draft of a paper or thesis chapter.
  • In all forms of coaching, we help you improve your organization, critical thinking, logic, use of source material, grammar, punctuation, word choice, sentence structure, and more.
  • We spend approx. 30 minutes reviewing your draft for a 30-min live appointment, or 60 for 60; we spend up to 90 minutes reviewing papers for asynchronous appointments.

How to book with a writing coach:

Make an appointment in WCOnline. WCOnline requires a simple, one-time registration. After you have registered, learn how to sign up for live and asynchronous coaching and workshops, then view our WCOnline calendars to find available appointments (note: the WCOnline interface has been updated, but the functionality remains the same):

Coaches are also available Fridays 1000–1430 Pacific Time during GWC Write-ins—extended blocks of time for focused work on a paper or thesis—as well as for drop-in help 1200–1300 Monday–Friday.

Classified papers and theses

Writing coaches can provide assistance on classified papers; contact the GWC for guidance on making an appointment to review your classified work.