Letter to the Editor: Response to Write Site Commentary

In a recent column in The Advocate, writer Jessica Jasperson thoughtfully makes the case that MSUM should continue to offer students help in developing their writing skills.  That service has been offered through the English Department’s Write Site, which will be discontinued in the near future.  However, students should know that there will continue to be a resource for them. Being able to see a tutor for assistance with a paper is valuable for students with all levels of writing skills. The question before the university is where is it administratively most efficient to offer this service.

We are forming a university writing task force whose charge will include determining the best approaches to writing instructional support. Students, faculty, and administrators all agree with the basic principle of providing some kind of tutoring in writing. A main objective of the task force is to determine the best methods to meet this goal. In addition, the task force will investigate best practices in providing writing support, and it’s possible we will identify new approaches that we haven’t previously considered

It is likely that the task force will hold open forums to which faculty, staff, and students will be invited. It would be valuable to hear from students their ideas about what kinds of support will best meet their needs.

We acknowledge and value the quality service tutors in the Write Site have provided. Rest assured the proposal to phase out the Write Site in its current form is not based on dissatisfaction with the current staff or student employees, rather a desire to find the best home for this valuable service.  As with many programs on campus, it’s time to make sure we are using the best and most efficient practices.

Randy Cagle, Interim Dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Denise Gorsline, Associate Vice President for Academic Planning

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