News & Notes from the Reading/Writing Center

A Peer Tutor’s Perspective

It’s a Friendly Place… I Promise!

(by sophomore peer tutor Rukmini Girish)

So the big news for me this week is that I completed my first tutoring sessions. I’m a tutor at the Reading/Writing Center (2nd floor of the Tredway Library for those of you who don’t know where it is), and I tutored two amazing students on Tuesday. For obvious confidentiality reasons, I’m not going to talk about the actual sessions, but I am going to try and persuade you that the RWC isn’t a mean, scary place.

Going to any sort of “tutoring” center automatically has a stigma attached to it. If you have to be tutored, you’re not doing well enough, there’s something wrong with you. Not true at all! The RWC is a place for everyone. You can come in to brainstorm ideas about a paper, go over a first draft if you’re having trouble organizing, even just talk about time management with a tutor. You can come in for five minutes with a specific question, or you can come in for half an hour (the usual length of a session) to talk about an entire assignment.

What’s great about the RWC, in my opinion, is that most tutors are students just like you. We’ve all felt overwhelmed or unsure or angry with a grade or frustrated that a paper just isn’t flowing. And we’re not experts. If you come in and ask me how to cite a specific issue of a magazine in the Chicago style, the odds are that I won’t know the answer off the top of my head. But I can direct you to resources, like the Purdue OWL and various books on citation that we have in the RWC and we can figure out the answer together. I guarantee that in a tutoring session, the tutor learns almost as much as you do. And if we still can’t figure out the answer, we’ll go and ask one of the faculty tutors and figure it out with them.

We learn best when we talk, after all. As a first-year, especially, you don’t have to be perfect. You’re still adjusting to life away from home while trying to handle a workload that’s much larger than the one you were used to in high school. That’s tough, I’ve done it. But at the RWC, we’re here to help, so come pay us a visit!

 

Workshop: Writing Personal Statements

Tuesday, October 2nd, at 5:30pm in Olin 208 — pizza provided!

RSVP on AugieHub.

If you are planning to apply for graduate school your personal statement will be a powerful part of your application! Learn the qualities of an effective personal statement and how to get started. Appropriate for all class levels.

 

Workshop: Studying for Tests (and even midterms!)

Sunday, September 9 from 4:00 to 4:30 in Olin 201.

Come hear about and try out some new strategies for studying tough subjects. Who knows–you may find a new favorite method to help you crush those midterms! We’ll even provide candy and a snack to help keep your blood sugar up as you go hit the books.

See you there!

Workshop: LSFY Readings Deciphered

Wednesday, September 5 from 4:00-4:30 just outside of the RWC.

Come discuss and do hands-on activities with annotating, summarizing, and deciphering difficult readings such as those in your LSFY class. Snacks will be provided.

This is the second of three Off-Center Workshops presented this term by the Reading/Writing Center. The third workshop (Studying for Tests–and even Midterms!) will be held Sunday, September 9 at 4:00pm in Olin 201.

See you there!

 

Summer Reading: Modern Classics

Looking for a good book this summer? RWC staff recently put together a list of 20th century English language must-reads. Take a look, and if you have anything to add (or contest), do leave us a comment.

British novels:

  • Conrad, Joseph. Heart of Darkness (1902)*
  • Golding, William. Lord of the Flies (1954)*
  • Ishiguro, Kazuo. The Remains of the Day (1989)*
  • Forster, E. M. A Passage to India (1924)
  • Huxley, Aldous. Brave New World (1932)
  • Orwell, George. 1984 (1949)

American novels:

  • Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby (1925)*
  • Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird (1960)*
  • Vonnegut, Kurt. Slaughterhouse-Five (1969)*
  • London, Jack. The Call of the Wild (1903)
  • Anderson, Sherwood. Winesburg, Ohio (1919)
  • Hemingway, Ernest. A Farewell to Arms (1929)
  • Faulkner, William. As I Lay Dying (1930)
  • Wright, Richard. Native Son (1940)
  • Spillane, Mickey. One Lonely Night (1951)
  • Salinger, J. D. The Catcher in the Rye (1951)
  • O’Connor, Flannery. Wise Blood (1952)
  • Kesey, Ken. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1962)
  • Pirsig, Robert. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (1974)
  • King, Stephen. The Stand (1978)
  • Card, Orson Scott. Ender’s Game (1985)
  • Tan, Amy. The Joy Luck Club (1989)
  • Irving, John. A Prayer for Owen Meany (1989)
  • Lowry, Lois. The Giver (1993) and Gathering Blue (2000)

American drama:

  • Williams, Tennessee. The Glass Menagerie (1945)*
  • Miller, Arthur. The Crucible (1952)
  • Hansberry, Lorraine. A Raisin in the Sun (1959)

* Selected by more than one person

Finals week hours + tunes!

The RWC will be open Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of finals week from 10:00am to 2:00pm, after which we will close until fall term. Stop by or call (794-8987) to make an appointment soon; they’re going fast.

Looking ahead, the last chance to see our very own Band of Tutors (aka The Grass-Fed Kids) for the foreseeable future will be this Friday at 8:00pm at Rozz-Tox in Rock Island (2108 3rd Ave.) Peer tutors Jaron Gaier and Maggie Hayes are graduating, meaning that the band will be on indefinite hiatus.  Stop by on your way out of town or to celebrate a year well-spent.

Tutor News Roundup: Week 4

Peer tutor Maggie Hayes presented her original research “The IDEA Project: Exploring Pluralism with Youth at Augustana College and in the Quad Cities” at the American Academy of Religion Midwest Regional Conference hosted by Augustana Friday March 30th as part of a session on Pluralistic Encounters.

Peer tutors Rachel Bruce, Jaron Gaier, and Maggie Hayes have been involved in the making of the independent film The Redwood Movement (read more about the Movement in the current issue of the Observer).  The film’s premier is Sunday, April 1st at 7:30 PM in Centennial Hall.  While this is the only on-campus showing, others will take place later in the month:

  • April 14th at 7:30 PM: Rozz-Tox
  • April 19th at 7:00 PM: Figge Art Museum
  • April 22nd at 8:00 PM: LeClaire Park in Davenport

Peer tutor Joe Bright is running for for SGA (Student Government Association) president.  Vote for him April 3-4 at the College Center or online.  Read the Observer article about the candidates.

 

Workshop: Time Management for Greeks

Sunday, 3/18/2012 from 4:00-4:45pm in the basement of Andreen Hall.

Are you involved in a Greek group? Need help juggling those commitments with your academics? Join RWC peer tutors and fellow Greek students for the first in a series of “Off-Center Workshops” in residence halls. We’ll have free food, free planners for the first 25 people, and a few pointers from your fellow Greeks on how to best manage your time. Come with questions for our panel discussion and Q&A, or just take notes on the various tips and strategies shared.

This event is sponsored by the Reading/Writing Center and Residence Hall Association and is the first of two Off-Center Workshops this term. The second will have a broader focus than just Greek students. Stay posted!

 

Spring is here!

Well, spring term, at least…
Stop in and see us; won’t you?
Else, just poor haiku.
 

Finals week hours

The RWC will be open Sunday night, February 12th, from 7-9pm, as well as Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday from 10:00am to 2:00pm, after which we will close until spring term. Stop by or call to make an appointment soon; they’re going fast. Best of luck with your final exams, and have a great spring break!