Writing Center

The Writing Center complements and extends the writing instruction cadets receive in the classroom by providing help with a full range of activities to improve their writing, at any level and in any discipline.  Professional and peer writing consultants work with cadets in one-on-one conferences on every aspect of the writing process, from planning a paper to polishing the final draft.

The purpose of the Writing Center is to provide non-evaluative assistance for cadets who wish to become more confident, flexible, skillful writers. In accordance with the VMI Honor Code, the Institute's Work-for-Grade Policy, and the ethics of tutorial practice, the writing projects with which cadets receive assistance reflect their own work.  Therefore, consultants do not supply new ideas or phrasing, nor do they correct errors in the text. Instead, they help cadets develop the strategies and skills they need to improve their texts.  

Consultants model a range of writing behaviors, from brainstorming activities that lead writers to discover viable topics to sentence-combining strategies that enable cadets to express their ideas in more complex but clear prose. 

Consultants can help you:

  • Conquer writer's block
  • Brainstorm and choose a topic
  • Develop an outline
  • Narrow your topic and formulate a thesis
  • Incorporate sources effectively
  • Acknowledge your sources
  • Develop strategies for revision, editing and proofreading

What we can do for you:

  • Help you improve no matter what your writing abilities are to begin with
  • Help at any stage of the writing process
  • Read your work in a responsive, non-judgmental manner
  • Help you locate rough spots
  • Refer you to appropriate sources for help on matters we can't solve in the conference
  • Show you strategies for better self-editing
  • Help you say what you have to say, as well as you can
  • Send a brief report to your instructor about the conference

What we will not do:

  • Proofread your paper for spelling and grammatical errors
  • Supply new wording or content for your paper
  • Guarantee better grades
  • Be a last-minute fix-it shop