Writing, math, presentation centers move services online


A sign outside the Writing Center informs people about updated closures while classes are moved online March 17 at Charles V. Park Library.

With classes moving to an online format, services like the Writing Center, the Math Assistance Center and the Presentation Skills Center have had to move online as well.

The Writing Center, which has locations in Charles V. Park Library and Aspach Hall, will be closed to face-to-face and walk-in appointments until further notice. 

Writing Center Director Steven Bailey said the three writing center courses: English 193, 299 and ELI 099 will continue to be held online just like any other face-to-face class. Students who were already eligible for online services – Global Campus students and students enrolled in English 101 and ELI 198 – will be able to use online services without interruption.

On April 6, the Writing Center expanded its services. Now undergraduate students can use the Writing Center for writing assignments in any class at CMU. Bailey said that due to staffing and budget limitations, it may take 2-3 days to recieve feedback from a consultant. During the weeks leading up to finals, that wait time may be longer. 

For information about submitting work to the Writing Center, visit the center's submission guidelines webpage.

The Math Assistance Center in the library and the Towers Residential Complex will be moving services online. The center set up six WebEx rooms for students to interact with math tutors. Each room has tutors dedicated to a different subject, including Algebra, Calculus, Statistics and more. 

All rooms are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The Presentation Skills Center will be moving fully online as well. Consultations and hours will remain the same, however, all consultations will be hosted over WebEx. The PSC is open 3-8 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday.

Director Danny McQuarters said students, faculty and staff who made an appointment with the PSC will receive an email before their appointment with a link to join a WebEx meeting, where consultants will be located. Visit the PSC's webpage to make an appointment with a consultant.

McQuarters said the center will still be able to take virtual "walk-in" appointments as well, as long as clients send an email to pscenter@cmich.edu to get the WebEx link.

Lesley Withers, communication faculty member and founding director of the PSC, encourages faculty to utilize the Presentation Skills Center during the shift to online-only classes. She said consultants can help faculty members adjust lectures and materials to online formats and can help professors learn how to operate programs like WebEx to communicate with students.

Along with the three on-campus centers, some academic departments, including physics and chemistry and biochemistry, will be providing online tutoring services, according to Heidi Mahon, director of student services in the College of Science and Engineering. 

Mahon said the Office of Academic Assistance is providing tutoring and supplemental instruction online. Students who are interested in these services should email aad@cmich.edu or call (989) 774-3465.