March 16, 2009

Hybrid Tutoring

On Friday I gave a presentation called "The Hybrid Tutoring Experience: The Path to Better Writers" at the Faculty Best Practices Showcase.

The presentation was about the advantages of combining online tutoring and face-to-face consulting for a single assignment.

PCCC uses to provide online writing (and other) tutoring to our students. Through the Title V grant, Writing Intensive students are required to use eTutoring for help with their writing at least twice during the semester. In addition, WI students are strongly encouraged to bring writing assignments to the Writing Center for assistance.

We have found that a good way to tackle difficult assignments is for students to go to eTutoring for a first draft of their essay and then bring those comments into the Writing Center and go over them with a face-to-face writing consultant. The student can go through the paper and make changes with a consultant present to answer questions, offer opinions, and make additional suggestions.

This approach has several benefits. First, it expands the number of times students can work on a draft of a paper. (eTutoring limits it to three drafts.) Additionally, it gives students the opportunity of knowing what problems they may be having before coming into a live session with a tutor. They can give the tutor information about their problems when making the appointment, and by bringing the eTutor's comments, they give the writing consultant a starting place. This saves time, as consultants usually start a session cold (not receiving the paper in advance). Finally, it removes some of the limitations of both face-to-face and online sessions by allowing students to ask questions about the eTutor's response and providing writing consultants with an immediate second opinion on the essay being discussed.

The PCCC Writing Center will continue to encourage hybrid writing tutorials with students to provide a well-rounded writing experience.

You can view my PowerPoint presentation below. More information about the PCCC Writing Center can be found at

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