The University of San Francisco: Learning and Writing Center

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Peer Tutoring FAQs

Where is the Learning & Writing Center Located?

The Learning & Writing Center is located in the Cowell Building, home of the USF School of Nursing and Health Professions, in Room  215.

How do I make a peer tutoring appointment?

The LWC provides peer tutoring in over 80 subjects each semester. To locate a tutor by subject and schedule an appoint students should follow the directions listed below:

  1. To enter TutorTrac:
    1. In USF Connect look under Quick Links for TutorTrac
    2. Log in with your USF Connect username and password
  2. Click on the Search Availabilities button on the right hand side of the screen
  3. From the Center drop-down menu select Learning Center
  4. Search by course by selecting from the Sections menu
  5. Click on the Search button
  6. Select an appointment from the schedule on the right and hit Save

Appointments can be booked no more than two weeks in advance and no less than 24 hours in advance.

How long are peer tutoring appointments?

Appointments are one hour long and go until tutoring is finished or the hour is up, whichever comes first.

What is the earliest I can make an appointment?

Appointments can be booked no more than two weeks in advance and no less than 24 hours in advance. To schedule an appointment log in to TutorTrac using your USF username and password or call (415) 422-6713.

What happens in a peer tutoring session?

Peer tutoring sessions are one hour. Together a tutor and their tutee set and develop strategies to achieve academic goals. Tutoring sessions provide guided practice for students and also provide an opportunity for students to make mistakes and check understanding in a non judgemental environment.Tutees bring to each session class notes and textbooks along with other material relevant to the work at hand. All sessions revolve around the students’ academic needs.

When does tutoring begin/end each semester?

During the fall and spring semesters, tutoring will commence in the second week of the semester and end on Study Day, the day prior to the start of finals. Each semester on Study Day the Learning Center hosts Tutopalooza a large drop-in tutoring event that allows students to stop in to get their last minute questions answered. Limited peer tutoring is available during the summer sessions, however there is no peer tutoring during the winter intersession.

How many appointments am I allowed per week?

Students are allowed to make a maximum of three appointments in a one subject per seven day period.

I’m really behind; can I make more than one appointment in the same subject on the same day?

No. Appointments are limited to one appointment per subject per day. You may however, make appointments for the same subject over three consecutive days.

It is always a good idea to make appointments as early as possible. Depending on the subject and time of semester, appointment times can fill up quickly.

Is it a good idea to make an appointment one or two weeks in advance?

It is always a good idea to make appointments as early as possible. Depending on the subject and time of semester, appointment times can fill up quickly.

How do I cancel an appointment?

Students must cancel appointments at least 24 hours in advance of their appointment time by logging into TutorTrac. On your home page, in the section titled TutorTrac Main Menu, you will see a list of your upcoming appointments. To cancel an appointment click the X to the right of the appointment you want to cancel. If you need to cancel less than 24 hours before the appointment, send an email to your tutor using the email listed for them in your confirmation email. It is also a good idea to phone the LWC front desk at (415) 422-6713 in case your tutor does not receive your email in time. Please note that cancelling your appointment within 24 hours is considered a "late cancellation" (see below for the consequences of a "late cancellation").

I’m running late will the tutor wait for me?

Your tutor will wait 15 minutes before declaring the appointment Missed by Student. If you know you are running late, contact the LWC at (415) 422-6713 to leave your tutor a message.

How will Late Cancellations and Missed Appointments affect my ability to receive tutoring?

Students are allowed three Late Cancellations/Missed Appointments each semester. Once you have accumulated three, you are no longer eligible to receive tutoring for the remainder of the semester. From that point, we encourage you to continue to use your other resources such as faculty office hours and classmate assistance.

There no tutors available when I am available, what can I do?

If there are no tutoring appointment that fit your schedule, complete a Tutor Request Form. We will ask our tutors to update their availability or we will seek out additional tutors to meet student demand.

How can I check to see the time of my appointment?

When an appointment is scheduled through TutorTrac, both the tutor and tutee will receive a confirmation email with the day, time, and location of the appointment. Tutees may also check upcoming appointments by logging into TutorTrac. On your home page, in the section titled TutorTrac Main Menu, you will find a list of your upcoming appointments with times and locations. You may also contact the LWC front desk for assistance at 415.422.6713.

I made an appointment but the contact information in the confirmation email was incorrect. What should I do?

If you find that the contact information we have on record is incorrect, you may log in to TutorTrac to update the information. From your home page, under Student Options, click Confirm Bio... Make any necessary changes, click Confirm and the log out. 

How should I prepare for my appointment beforehand?

To best prepare for a tutoring appointment, students should attend class, complete all assigned readings and attempt all homework problems. Students should come to their appointments with course notes, textbooks, and other relevant  materials. Students should prepare a list of questions and topics to discuss with their tutor, and have realistic expectations of what can be accomplished during the session.

Where should I meet my tutor?

Students should check their confirmation email to determine the location of  their appointment. If the location is unclear, contact the LWC at 415.422.6713 for assistance.

Can I meet with my tutor off-campus?

No. All tutoring appointments must take place on campus, in public areas that are conducive to your ability to learn. 

Do peer tutors receive any training?

Yes. The Learning & Writing Center Peer Tutoring program is certified by the College Reading & Learning Association (CRLA). During their first semester with us, tutors are required to participate in 11.5 hours of online and in-person training. Topics include Developing Study Strategies, Taking Advantage of Learning Styles, Diverse Needs of USF Students, and Effective Communication Skills, among others. Training provides tutors with hands on experience and an opportunity to learn from their peers. Tutors who continue past their first semester remain engaged in 5 hours of training each semester.

How can I work at the Learning & Writing Center?

The LWC hires students both as tutors in our various programs and as support staff in the Center. Visit the Job Opportunities section of our website to find more information and complete an application.

What are the requirements to be considered for a peer tutoring position?

All peer tutors are full-time USF students who have completed at least a semester of study at USF. Tutors are those students show dedication to their academics and maintain a Cumulative and Semester GPA of 3.0 or higher. To tutor for a specific course the applicant should have taken the course at USF, received an A- or above, and can produce a USF faculty letter of recommendation. All tutors are required to participate in ongoing tutor training during their time as an LWC peer tutor.

To apply, applicants should complete an online application. If there is a need, the applicant will be contacted for an interview. Students interested in working as Language Tutors should complete an application with the Department of Modern and Classical Languages (MCL). Not all applicants or students referred by faculty will be hired.

Where can I find more information?

All information is available on our website. Also, students may call (415) 422-6713 or come into the Learning & Writing Center in Cowell 215 to speak with a staff member.