The University of San Francisco: Learning and Writing Center
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Information for Families

In alignment with our mission, the Learning & Writing Center offers a variety of services to help USF students achieve their academic goals.  Below are some links to more detailed descriptions of these service as well as some tips on how to help foster academic success with your students.The Learning & Writing Center provides peer tutors  to assist students with the development of course-specific study strategies and greater understanding of course material.  For historically challenging courses, we also offer Supplemental Instruction, a series of structured study sessions facilitated by a peer leader.  Writing assistance is available through writing appointments  in which students develop their writing skills by working on specific assignments.  Our staff also meets with students individually and in groups to assist in the development of study skills and strategies such as note taking, test taking and reading strategies. 

Family members can play a large part in a student's academic success through their encouragement and support.  Below are some tips for supporting your student.

  • Talk to your student about his or her courses; discuss topics you are familiar with and ask questions about those you are not.
  • Encourage your student to connect with their professors; faculty members are excellent resources and mentors.
  • Suggest that your student study with others; group learning with classmates, tutors and other peers can often facilitate better understanding.
  • Remind your student that they are in college first and foremost for the opportunity to learn; everything else comes second - sometimes even family obligations.
  • Encourage your student to plan early and study often; managing priorities will help students find more time in their schedules.  
  • Let them know that help is available; the University offers a range of services to support students.  If they're unsure where to look, they can ask us.
     

How Can I Support My Student During Finals Week?The week of final exams can be stressful for students, below are some tips for supporting your student.  

  • Ask for details.  There’s no need to be a pest, but asking specifics will allow your student to verbalize a plan for studying and completing tasks. 
  • Be a coach.  If your student is having trouble staying on task, offer to check in on his or her progress with specific tasks throughout the week. 
  • Help prioritize.  Students can feel overwhelmed when all their courses are coming to an end, help them decipher which exams and assignment carry the most weight and importance.   
  • Encourage healthy habits.  Taking the time to eat nutritious meals, exercise and get enough sleep can make a huge reduction in stress levels.
  • Give praise.  To help raise your student’s self-confidence, help to identify and recognize what he or she has accomplished so far this semester. 
  • Suggest peer support.  Studying with classmates, tutors and other peers can often facilitate better understanding.  
  • Be patient.  Your student is in college first and foremost for the opportunity to learn; everything else comes second - sometimes even family obligations.
  • Point to resources.  The University offers a range of services to support students.  If students are unsure where to look, they can contact us.