Tutoring Services Are Still Available for Spring Term

COVID-19 had caused Spring term for EOU students to change drastically, and this includes changes to the tutoring services. Before Spring term, the tutoring services were offered in the Learning Center, which is located on the second floor of Loso. The Writing tutors had drop in hours that were utilized by students who wanted fresh eyes on their upcoming papers, as well as students who needed blue slips (confirmations of a session) for extra credits or an assignment. There were also two math labs for students who wanted to drop in at their convenience instead of going online to make an appointment. 

Now, because of the social distance and stay at home orders, tutoring is no longer being conducted in person. The Learning Center and math labs have been shut down, but tutoring is still up and running! The online software that they are using is within the WConline scheduling program, and it is there that students can click “start or join online consultation” and begin their online tutoring session. The EOU library has set up computers for students who need tutoring but might not have access to a computer or to reliable internet. The library is open to all students who need to do homework, be on a zoom lecture, or get tutoring from 8am-7pm Monday-Friday. Student ID’s are the only thing that let you into the library during those hours.

Blue slips are also still available. Instead of a physical blue slip, people who have had tutoring sessions can email the tutor an email (cc’ing thier professor) and ask for a confirmation. This means students can still get the proof of help for possible extra credit in some classes, and credit for that assignment in others. Lauren Wolf, a writing tutor says about the switch, “Although these circumstances are not ideal, the staff at the learning center has worked diligently to continue providing services for students.”

Wolf even notices that often being online has created a more comfortable space for students. About this, she says, “The internet…provides a veil of sorts where you can freely express yourself from the comfort of your couch. The conversations I have been having with students are in-depth and engaging with frequent questions.” The same format that allows students to schedule and have online sessions also has an option for students who cannot video chat. These students can use the feature on this program that allows the tutor and student to message back and forth in order to work together to look at the students paper. 

The Learning Center Tutor Coordinator, Ryan Scariano, is here to help students where needed. This includes if students don’t see the class they need a tutor for scheduled online, they can ask Scariano and he will help the student find a suitable tutor. He also wants students to remember to “use your professors as resources” because they are here to help you.

Scariano comments that using this online way of tutoring is good practice. He continues, “pandemic or not, our culture is rapidly moving online; shopping, dating, classes, tutoring…. Regardless of what our personal, professional and academic lives look like in six months or a year, the march into a virtual world is inexorable, so    we should make the effort to adapt.” Continuing to book tutoring appointments online also helps the tutors. He reminds students that “For our tutors (who are also students), tutoring is a job. I want them to earn money. Any time you meet with one of our tutors (which, by the way, is always free), you are helping them pay their bills!”

Lauren Wolf thinks taking advantage of tutoring services benefits students in the long run. She comments, “I think it is important to know that even though we can not be in the learning center with students, we are still here for you! Utilizing resources is incredibly important at this time and our tutoring staff is at your disposal!” Chatting online with your tutor will not only help students with their assignments and learning process. It will also allow them to be in a space where they can socialize and make connections while still being safe and following social distancing guidelines. 

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