Faculty support

WaCC Faculty Guidelines

Collaborating with the Writing and Communication Center (WaCC) for is an effective way for you to enhance student learning, long-term writing skills, and academic success.  

How and when to get started: 

  • Introduce WaCC Resources to Students: When you begin talking about your writing assignments early in the quarter, introduce the WaCC to your students as well.  
  • Add WaCC resources into your course materials. Include short blurbs for the WaCC in course syllabi or and in Canvas:
    • “The Writing and Communication Center (WaCC) offers free tutoring on any project that involves reading, writing, and/or communication, including papers, presentations, creative work, and reading assignments. WaCC Peer Consultants work with students in person, via Zoom, and asynchronous feedback via email. Visit https://www.uwb.edu/academic-support-programs/wacc to learn more and make appointments. The WaCC is located in the Academic Learning Commons in UW2-030.”
  • Invite short presentations in your classroom to introduce the WaCC, our services and how to access them.  We’ll send quarterly emails to remind you about these! 
  • Encourage WaCC visits: Encourage students to schedule conferences with the WaCC early and often. Especially well before the assignment is due. It is helpful to provide detailed and specific writing feedback to your students, so our tutors have a place to focus where you believe it is most needed.  
  • Using our non-editing approach, WaCC consultants focus on global issues of the work e.g., assignment guidelines, main point or question, structure and organization, clear thinking, and overall effectiveness. We provide grammar support in the context of the students’ writing so they can identify and correct future errors.  
  • Collaborate with the WaCC: You can collaborate with the WaCC professional staff, such as Erik Echols (eechols@uw.edu), Deborah Hathaway (djacoby@uw.edu), and/or our Rhet/Comp faculty partners, Peter Brooks (pjbrooks@uw.edu) and Neil Simpkins (nfsimp@uw.edu) to provide feedback on your writing assignments. We can help you answer questions like:
    • How can faculty best integrate writing and communication goals into overall course design?
    • How can faculty best design assignments to meet course writing and communication goals?
    • How can faculty design assignments that can be assessed efficiently?
    • How can faculty use “low stakes” writing to enhance student learning?

Designing an assignment with the WaCC in mind: 

  • Be specific about what you want your students to do. Phrase the assignment specifically, “Meet with a peer tutor about revision suggestions.”  
  • Incentivize, don’t require: Assign extra credit with an open timeline (not a specific due date) and a small deliverable such as a reflection on the process or how they will revise their work based on WaCC feedback. 
  • Session confirmations: WaCC peer consultants can confirm student appointments via email or our written confirmation form. Please inform your students to ask for confirmation (we don’t automatically ask) for engaged tutoring sessions longer than 25 minutes.

Assignment review

We can share your assignments with our peer consultants for two distinct purposes:

  1. To have peer consultants read the assignment from a student’s perspective and provide feedback on how they understand the assignment guidelines. Faculty can then use this information to revise the assignment instructions if necessary.
  2. To familiarize the peer consultants with the assignment guidelines as well as how they can best support students in completing the assignment. Instructors can tailor the support students receive by sharing additional information about the assignment and how it fits into overall course goals.

To share assignments for either purpose, send an email to WaCC Assistant Director, Erik Echols at eechols@uw.edu.

Teaching resources