I. General Guidelines to follow when first working with students
- Determine if individual students have been referred (required to attend) and by whom, and look at their referral sheet. If they have been referred but don’t have a form, get them to bring one as soon as possible (preferably immediately). File the form for possible future reference in their instructor’s folder. Students who come in voluntarily don’t need this form, if not formally referred.
- For appointments, write in students’ names and phone numbers on the master schedule for a regular weekly (or more often) time (required of referred students). Comp II students needing paraphrasing help may need more than a half hour at a time, since the exercises were designed for one-hour sessions. (Students who arrive to take a CLEP exam for ENG 111 should be scheduled no later than one hour before the Center’s closing time; students who take the ENG 112 CLEP exam must be scheduled no later than two hours before the Center’s closing time.)
- Discuss during the first five minutes or so the individual student’s needs. Get students to agree to come in at least weekly (or more often), even if they do not have an essay to show you, if they have been referred. In the process, motivate students and discuss in detail how you might help them weekly with writing or exercises to improve their grade. Above all, get the students talking; it is important to know what they think that they need.
- Spend 1/2 hour or more reading each student’s rewrite or draft ORALLY, getting students to understand and write in their own corrections or revisions. Make sure you understand their assignment exactly. Tell students not to leave until you have seen their corrections (initial what you have looked over). If necessary get them to stay and write or return if the task isn’t completed.
- If no essay or rewrite is brought in (your first priority for working with a student), follow instructions for doing exercises based on referral form (paraphrasing, fragments, etc.).
- When no essay or referral sheet is immediately available, you might give students the grammar pretest or posttest (especially if in Comp I) and make plans to go over it with them to plan future help sessions.
- Congratulate students on their effort, remind them of their next session and tell them to bring in essays they are working on, and fill out briefly a conference report ( use carbon copy). (At the end of the week, one copy of the report goes to the student’s instructor and one copy goes in the filing cabinet in his instructor’s folder for future reference and for the sake of end-of-semester reports to be written.) Do reports for referred students and drop ins.
II. For subsequent sessions, your first priority is to go over students’ writing when possible; your second priority is to go over recommended exercises (when there is time) or the grammar pretest or posttest. However, do not put unnecessary pressure on students to do too much at once; chances are that their class assignments keep them busy enough.
III. Contact students tactfully but immediately when they miss a scheduled session. Tactfully find out why they miss to show that you care. Have something planned for students in the event that they say they have nothing to work on, but make sure it is constructive and doesn’t make them hostile.
IV. When a problem arises, don’t hesitate to call Dr. Sadlon, the Director (at 8133 or 863-3214) or an English faculty member, especially if a student repeatedly doesn’t attend. Try to make students care about their progress. Finally, make full use of the assigned time.