Writing Center driven by peer consultants

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By Allen Brewer

The 2016 Quality Enhancement Plan, improving student writing, has been created to help students develop stronger writing skills for the future.

The three-step plan includes a Writing Center to help students work on their essays; an accelerated learning program that allows students to take beginning English and English Comp. I at the same time and curriculum alignment to allow English courses to grade on the same curriculum scale.

One of the features of the Writing Center, located in the McLendon Center in Room 222, is that students get one-on-one help from student peer consultants. There are four peer consultants working this semester including Arkasia Allen, Lizzy Davis, Ashton Dye and Nathan Walls.

Writing Center Director Jason Jones thinks that students will be more open to corrections from fellow students. While students might feel more uncomfortable going to a teacher for help, peer consultants offer help in every step of the writing process in a calm environment.

“My job is to help students be more confident with their writing,” Arkasia Allen, a sophomore studying psychology from Senatobia, said. “Just having a person there to listen to their thoughts helps.”

In addition to helping others with their writing, students must also build on their own skills.

“Being a Writing Center consultant has broadened my views on different kinds of writing,” Lizzy Davis, a freshman studying radiology from Independence, said. “I have become more interested in the many kinds of writing and am always learning more.”

The skills students need for this job include grammar, sentence structure and paper formatting. Students also must fill out reports on the skills reviewed by the consultation for the students to study later.

“Mr. Jones told me about the Writing Center at the beginning of the semester. I enjoy helping other students with their papers,” Nathan Walls, a sophomore studying secondary education from Strayhorn, said.

No extra studying is needed to schedule a meeting at the Writing Center. Students are just asked to bring their composition, their ideas and an open attitude to improve their writing.

“As consultants, we focus on all aspects of the writing process—instead of just one part,” Ashton Dye, a freshman studying general college from Strayhorn, said.

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