Writing Center Assistance

FALL 2020

The Writing Center is happy to assist all WMU writers. Our online scheduler lists our Fall 2020 appointment hours.

If you have worked with us previously this semester, know how to use our online scheduler, and just want to make an appointment, scroll down to the online scheduler link listed under “Writing Center Online Scheduler,” which is located directly after the explanation about our four assistance options.

If you have never used our online scheduler, realize that your WMU login will not automatically work with it. Instead, you’ll need to register, just once while you’re at WMU, to use our scheduler. Register by going to the scheduler, clicking on “First visit? Register for an account,” and following the brief instructions. We are not officially offering drop-in help this semester. However, if you need help and cannot find an appointment time during our open hours, call (269) 599-5166. We may be able to work with you. For complete details about our assistance and our online scheduler, read all of the information below. If that information does not cover your needs, or you need to arrange a meeting outside of our hours, call (269) 599-5166.

IF YOU ARE NEW TO THE WRITING CENTER, PLEASE READ THE ENTIRE PAGE TO FIND THE INFORMATION YOU NEED.

Four options for Writing Center help:

1. Online + Telephone/Teams Appointments—Use our online scheduler (see scheduler registration instructions below) to make appointments that can last up to 50 minutes. Through our scheduler, you can attach papers and other documents, like the assignment or a rubric. We can also meet you in the WMU Writing Center Teams environment in Microsoft Teams via a Google doc or through other easily available technology. 

2. Request Help at Other Times—If our hours do not work for you, call us at (269) 599-5166 or email us at kim.ballard@wmich.edu to discuss your available times and your needs. If no one answers the phone, leave a message with your phone number and name. 

3. Emailed Comments—We can now work with some students by answering email questions and/or by making no more than SEVEN (7) different comments on drafts. We'll need at least 48 hours to respond to such emails. If you want this help option, email kim.ballard@wmich.edu the following information:

  • Your questions or papers.
  • A telephone number so we may contact you if we have questions.
  • Your assignment, grading rubric, or other materials that will help us understand what you are working on.
  • Your deadline.
  • Your class name and number (ex., English 4020: Studies in the Novel).
  • Your instructor’s name.

Ideally, we need at least 48 hours (2 days) to make sure we can help you with papers. If you cannot give us that time, consider one of our other options, contact (269) 599-5166, or email kim.ballard@wmich.edu. We may be able to help anyway.

4. Request In-person Assistance—For convenience and possibly for safety reasons, we are mainly offering virtual writing assistance as described above. However, if you wish to meet with a consultant in person, you can arrange such help by calling or texting (269) 599-5166 or by emailing kim.ballard@wmich. Ideally, all in-person appointment requests will be made at least 24 hours in advance (not counting weekend hours). Such meetings will ideally occur in 1343 Ellsworth Hall, the physical Writing Center, during the hours that Ellsworth Hall is open: Tuesday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Both the consultant and writer/student will be separated by a plexi-glass barrier and will sit across from one another, not beside each other. Both individuals must wear masks and must show their green badges (from the Sindecuse Health Center daily survey) to each other. Finally, neither the consultant nor the student/writer can touch each other’s computers/technology, papers, or persons. And really finally, we look forward to post-COVID days just like you do—we miss all of you and our comfortable learning space!

Writing Center Online Scheduler 

Your current Western Login and password WON’T automatically work with our online scheduler. First-time users wanting to schedule an appointment MUST REGISTER to use our scheduler. Do so by following the instructions below:

  • Go to https://wmich.mywconline.com/ 
  • Click the words “First visit? Register for an account.”
  • Fill in the registration information.
  • Check “yes” for all email options. We won’t send mass emails, and you’ll want to get appointment emails.
  • Click on the “Register” button.
  • Notice the message “You have successfully registered! Please log in below to continue.’
  • Login using your email and password and click on any white square to make an appointment.

Other Key Info About Our Scheduler

  •  White squares show open appointments. Blue squares indicate booked appointments or hours specific consultants are not working.
  •  Appointments may last up to 50 minutes and may be extended if the consultant does not have other work scheduled. 
  • Writers may make two appointments weekly. Email kim.ballard@wmich.edu or call (269) 387-4615 if you need more appointments for a week. We will try our best to help you with additional appointments or other ways.

 

USING MICROSOFT TEAMS – WMU Writing Center

We established a new Microsoft Teams channel that allows writers to connect with writing consultants. The name of the channel is WMU Writing Center. If you want to meet in Teams, during your pre-scheduled appointment, let us know in the message section of the online scheduler, via an email to kim.ballard@wmich.edu, or by telephone at (269) 599-5166. We are not monitoring our Teams channel for drop-ins. Email or telephone us to see if we are available for a drop-in.

General Procedure

  1.  Log in to Microsoft Teams
    • In your web browser (Google Chrome recommended), go to https://wexchange.wmich.edu and log in - use YourBroncoNetID@wmich.edu and password. (It's important to include "@wmich.edu" after your Bronco NetID at this login.)
    • Click on Teams app logo (it's blue-ish-purple) and Teams will open in a new browser tab.
    • Click the gold button below to go to the WMU Writing Center team. When you see the "Stay better connected..." message in your browser, click Use the web app instead. Click Join Now.

Microsoft TeamsWMU Writing Center

    • You will automatically be on the "General" channel. In the left-side menu, click on the “Ask for Help Now” to see which consultant is available to help. You can also select the “How to Guide” channel for more instructions about using the site to seek help.

    2. Scroll to the bottom of the page where it says "start a new conversation". 

    •  Enter "I need help" or questions here. Be sure that a consultant has left a message to indicate someone is on duty. 
    •  If no one responds within 10 minutes, consultants are busy or you've entered Teams during hours we are not open. 
    • If you need help, call (269) 599-5166.