Frequently Asked Questions
How often can I make an appointment?
All students (undergraduate and graduate) may schedule up to three appointments per week using the online scheduling system. All students may have only one appointment per day.
Graduate students working on dissertations and longer projects may request extended appointments by emailing email@example.com. For more information see the policy section below. Post-docs and faculty who wish to meet with another faculty member or an advanced graduate student may schedule one appointment per week by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Can I email my paper for a writing consultant to review before my appointment?
No. It is our policy to review your work during your scheduled appointment. We make exceptions to this rule for faculty and graduate students who have arranged extended appointments.
Can I bring writing that isn’t for a course?
Yes. We can help you with many writing projects, including personal essays, grant applications, creative writing, dissertations, books, and the like.
Can I come in before my paper is finished?
Yes. You are welcome to come in at any point—whether you are brainstorming a topic, completing a draft, or working toward final revisions.
Will my professor know that I came in to the Writing Studio?
No. We have a confidentiality policy that prohibits consultants and staff from sharing information about your use of the Writing Studio without your consent. However, some faculty offer extra credit for students who can prove that they’ve had an appointment at the Studio. In that case, just tell your writing consultant that you need to show proof of having completed an appointment. We encourage you to talk with your professors about your experience at the Studio.
I am a non-native English speaker. Can you help me?
Yes. If English is not your primary language, you are welcome at the Writing Studio. We also strongly recommend that you contact the English Language Center to schedule an appointment there and maximize your use of both campus resources.
Can I bring in a take-home exam for help?
If your instructor has given you explicit permission to do so, yes. We are happy to help with take-home exams. Remember, it is your responsibility to check with your instructor if you have questions about whether or not you can use the Writing Studio for particular assignments.
Where do I go for help with resumes and cover letters?
If you are an undergraduate, your primary resource for resumes and cover letters is the Center for Student Professional Development. We can help you think about both pieces, but only in addition to the professional help available to you at the Center. If you are working on a CV, we encourage you to work closely with an academic advisor in your home department. We can help you think about how to organize and describe your accomplishments, but only in addition to the specific guidance offered by someone in your field of study. If you are a PhD candidate, we strongly encourage you to work with Assistant Dean of the Graduate School, Ruth Schemmer, as you prepare for the job market.
Without a request from the student, the Writing Studio does not share any information about appointments with instructors or other inquiring parties. In the event that a student request is made, the Writing Studio shares information about the date and time of a completed appointment.
It is the responsibility of each student to uphold the Vanderbilt Honor Code and to determine whether it is appropriate to schedule an appointment for a particular assignment (e.g., a take-home exam or foreign language essay).
Number of Appointments
Undergraduate students may schedule up to three appointments per week. Graduate students may schedule one appointment per week or have one walk in appointment per week. Undergraduate students may also use the Writing Studio up to twice a week on a walk-in basis when consultants are available. Students are never permitted to have more than one appointment a day.
Extended Sessions for Graduate Students
Extended appointments MUST be arranged in advance via an e-mail request to: email@example.com. An initial 50-minute session is required, during which time the writer and consultant will discuss the project, determine the type of ongoing appointment most suitable to the writer and the work, and set goals for the series of extended sessions.
These extended appointments are a limited resource for the Writing Studio. The number offered each semester depends on factors including the availability of qualified staff and the demand for normal-length consultation sessions. When requests for extended appointments exceed the number of spots available, the Writing Studio makes decisions with the following questions in mind:
1) How many semesters has a student held an extended appointment? Priority is given to students who have not previously utilized this service.
2) Are ongoing appointments with the same consultant necessary for the student to develop the ideas and arguments of his or her dissertation?
3) In what order were the requests received?
If a writer is more than 10 minutes late for a scheduled appointment, the appointment may be given to a walk-in client.
In the event that a cancellation cannot be avoided, an appointment should be cancelled at least eight hours in advance out of respect for others’ time. Appointments should be cancelled using the online scheduling system; in the case of technical difficulties or emergency situations, please call the Studio at 615.343.2225
After three missed appointments, a writer will lose the privilege to schedule appointments for the remainder of the semester. He or she will still be able to use Studio services on a walk-in basis as the schedule permits.