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Saybrook Center for Writing & Academic Success

The Center for Writing & Academic Success serves students by assisting them in developing their writing process and instructing them in using the tools and resources necessary to be self-sufficient writers in their academic studies and beyond.

Center for Writing & Academic Success Request Forms

The Center for Writing and Academic Success has a referral form​ available to all faculty and staff. While the Center remains an optional service for students, the referral form helps the Center support students by allowing the Center to

  1. directly contact the student,
  2. provide support to schedule an appointment, if needed, and
  3. provide the writing coach input from the instructor to better support the student.  

The service request form exists to allow faculty and staff to request services from the Center and Writing and Academic Success staff. Services include, but are not limited to

  1. instructor consultations,
  2. online classroom visits,
  3. event participation, and
  4. event collaboration. 

Note that submitting a service request form will provide the Center with the information needed to determine if the staff and resources are available. Availability is based on a "first-come-first-served" basis, so please provide sufficient time for planning and preparation. 

Drop-in Hours

Each semester, the Center for Writing & Academic Success hosts drop-in hours which are best used for quick questions about writing or the resources available through the Center for Writing and Academic Success. Individuals with questions that require further support should schedule an appointment with one of our writing coaches​​. 

WHEN: Thursdays from 11am-12:30 pm (Pacific Time)

WHERE: Online via Zoom at

Faculty & Staff FAQs

​What do students do when working with a writing coach? 

The answer is surprisingly simple...anything! In alignment with the center's mission statement and Saybrook values, writing coaches provide individualized support to students, no matter where they are at in the writing process. Students may come to a session with an outline, half-finished paper, completed document, or a paper that has feedback from the instructor.

​While each session may cover different topics, in each session the writing coach will ask the student what their priorities are for the session. Essentially, writing coaches support the student in developing their writing process to help set them up for success, not just for their current assignment, but for their whole academic career. ​​


​A ​​​​​student worked with a writing coach, why were there still errors in their document?

​Writing coaches do not provide line-by-line editing. The Center for Writing and Academic Success seeks to support students in developing their writing skills. During coaching sessions, the student retains ownership of their work and the writing coach serves as a guide through the writing process. Editing services are limited to students who have successfully ​defended their completed dissertation and have begun dissertation finalization for degree conferral. 


Can I get proof that a particular student has signed up for or has received support from a writing coach?

​In order to maintain confidentiality, this request must come from the student. The student may choose to disclose information about their sessions as they find appropriate. Students may request this by contacting the center at


​​​The semester is done, but I am still concerned about a student I had. They either barely passed or need to retake the course. Can they get help between semesters?

Yes! ​Encourage the student to come to the Center for Writing and Academic Success or complete a referral form​. The Center for Writing and Academic Success is open all year (excluding holidays) and have a high amount of availability in "off seasons" such as the summer term. In between semesters our writing coaches can either (1) review previous work that the student submitted, (2) help the student process/implement instructor feedback, and (3) aide the student in preparing for their upcoming semester. 


​I encouraged a student to sign up for a session with a writing coach, but they said there was no one available. When can they get support?

​Our writing coaches are part-time federal work study students. The schedule is limited to our current staffing and availability. Students should keep in mind that busy points in the semester (midterms, finals, etc.) will be more difficult to get appointments. 

The center requires that students schedule appointments 48 hours in advance to allow sufficient time to coordinate with their writing coach. In addition, students are limited to one session per week

Availability is on a first-come-first-served basis. As such, it is recommended that faculty encourage students to sign up for appointment in advance. The Center's schedule of availability opens before the start of each semester and is open until 2-3 weeks after the last day of instruction. Students can schedule appointments with a writing coach in advance. Appointments can be modified or moved closer to the date of the session. The student does not need a final draft to create an appointment or work with a writing coach. 

How long does the finalization process take?

The Center for Writing and Academic Success is unable to provide a standard turn-around time for the entire finalization process due to variations in the (1) length of dissertations, (2) overall quality of the document at the start of the process, (3) complexity of edits, and (4) amount of time the student needs to return the document. 

The editor is allowed up to two weeks to provide the first round of edits, unless a special arrangement has been made. 


Does the Center for Writing and Academic Success provide editing services before students complete their oral defense? 

The Ce​​nter is unable to provide editing services prior to completion of the oral defense. Students may contact the Center to be provided with a list of Saybrook-approved external editors that set their own rates for the services they provide. Prior to degree conferral, all students may schedule an appointment with a writing coach (one per week). Writing coaches are unable to provide line-by-line editing services, but they may work with dissertation students by guiding them through the writing process, helping implement feedback from the committee, or supporting the student in making revisions and edits to their document.  

All stu​​dents receive editing services through the Center after completing their oral defense. To learn more, check out our webpage Dissertation Finalization. ​


​I am the dissertation chair. What do I need to do during the finalization process? ​

All requested edits by the chair must be implemented before the editor begins the finalization process. After the document has been submitted to the registrar, the chair must complete and submit (to the registrar) an abstract review checklist. 

Does the Center for Writing and Academic Success have subscriptions to digital resources (such as Grammarly, Coursera, Refworks, etc.) for students and/or faculty?

The Center for Writing and Academic Success does not currently houses a limited number of subscriptions to Recite. Recipients of the subscription are determined by the Academic Affairs Leadership Council. However, no other subscriptions are housed by the Center. While the Center recognizes the efficacy of such tools, we are currently unable to provide university-wide access. Refworks is available through the Saybrook Library. Questions about using and accessing Refworks can be sent to Questions about other subscriptions (including Recite) can be directed to Peter Fontaine,  ​


Besides one-on-one support, w​​hat other services and resources are available to students?

The Center currently provides access to:

  • Canvas Shell: Self-enroll in the canvas shell to access the many resources available to help develop writing skills. 
  • Turnitin Trial Submission (available in the canvas shell): Submit your paper to the trial submission and preview your similarity score before submitting to your course. Multiple submissions allowed. 
  • Drop-in Hours: Ask quick questions about writing!
  • ​​Events: Keep your eyes peeled for emails and announcements from the Center about our upcoming events. 

Faculty, staff, and students can also contact us at​. Expect a response within 1-2 business days.