ERIC Number: ED365996
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Apr-24
Reference Count: N/A
Where Is the Line? How Ethical Questions Reflect a Writing Center's Philosophy.
Robertson, Mary C.; Apanewicz, Rachel
The question of where the line is often arises as tutors attempt to confine their tutoring within ethical boundaries suggested by the line image. On the surface, some issues look easy. To the question of whether tutors should offer advice on take-home test writing assignments, most writing center personnel would probably respond with "absolutely not." However, in-class and take-home tests are not the same. There are no set answers to these and other issues. Each writing center functions within a special academic and political context and must address these contexts as it defines its role and policies. The professional staff at the Sheekey Writing Center at La Salle University offers help on grammar, mechanics, sentence structure (but not on the ideas expressed) in take-home test assignments only after the teacher agrees. A panic-stricken student faced with a poem explication assignment proved a more difficult challenge. A combination of questions, modeling, mirroring, and hints enabled the student to break through his mental block. Tutors at the center inform students about the nature of plagiarism and the gravity of the offense. Even mundane policies should reflect a writing center's philosophy. Policies should be deliberate and purposeful and not the result of tradition or conformity to some abstract ideal. (RS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Educational Issues; La Salle University PA; Tutor Role
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Mid-Atlantic Writing Centers Conference (Villanova, PA, April 24, 1993).