The Writing Center
The Writing Center is a collaborative learning program dedicated to working one-on-one with student writers. Students come to the center for help at various stages of the writing process. In a writing session, tutors encourage students to discuss ways to improve their writing. They help students clarify their thinking and develop their ideas. Tutors also help students find strategies for improving organization, sentence structure, grammar and punctuation. The Writing Center also provides a library of handouts and style manuals, a collection of handouts about writing and a comfortable place to sit, read and write.
Left to right: Taylor Kerns, Miles Chasek, Holly Atterbury, Laura Cataldi, Melissa Rosfeld, Amanda Bannan, Nicky Banzhaf, Hannah Clark
Not pictured: Elizabeth Bourk
Writing Process Checklist
The Writing Center staff is able to help students in all stages of the writing process.
- Generate and focus ideas; discuss concepts; brainstorm for ideas; use clustering, free writing, and other prewriting techniques.
- Formulate topics and subtopics; develop an outline; include supporting details for each subtopic.
- Get the topics and details down on paper; don't worry about grammar or transition at this point; consider writing the introduction and the conclusion after writing the body of the paper.
- Checking paper for content; Special attention is given to topic sentences, transition, organization, and the thesis statement.
- We help students with grammar and punctuation errors; however, we do not merely "fix" your paper. We explain the errors and ways to correct them.
Please begin work with us in the early stages of your writing/speaking assignment. We find it actually decreases difficulties that students have in later stages.
The Speaking Center
The Speaking Center staff is available to assist students with major class presentation projects. Media software and equipment is available for practice and preparation. Assistance includes strategies for organization, delivery and presentational aids.
Oral Presentation Checklist
- Select Topic
- Something you know or are interested in.
Does it fit the occasion and the audience?
Narrow it down to a manageable size.
Avoid long lists.
- Research Your Topic
- Find 2 or 3 current sources.
Look in periodical indexes.
Check government resources.
Use the Web.
Cite the author's name, periodical date, publication date, web page, name, etc.
- Develop an Introduction
- Attention getter: engage your audience and draw them into speech.
Significance: reason audience should listen.
Credibility: why you are qualified.
Thesis statement: specific topic.
Preview: a list of your main points.
- Develop 3–5 Main Points
- Each point needs a source of information.
Decide on a pattern of organization that suits topic:
- Time: past, present, future, or from beginning to current date.
- Sequential: how to do something.
- Topical: 3 major areas of topic, i.e., political, economic, social.
- Cause/effect: leading causes of a problem and how it affects your audience.
- Develop transitional statements between introduction and first point, between each point, and finally, between last point and conclusion.
- Work from an Outline
- Practice your presentation: do not read a speech.
Build confidence to work from a topic/sentence outline.
Practice out loud using your presentational aids.
- Develop a Conclusion
- Review: a restatement of the main points.
Final statement: should leave a lasting impact and bring ideas to a close.
Call to action: in persuasive messages explaining what you want the audience to do.
If you are interested in the Writing/Speaking Center, please contact us via e-mail or phone 308-432-6381 or 1-800-CHADRON and ask to be transferred to extension 6381.