The Catholic University of America

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Writing Center?

We provide free, one-on-one consultations for writing projects across all disciplines at any stage of the process. Our instructors believe that all writers, regardless of skill level, can benefit from discussing their writing with experienced readers.

What does the Writing Center offer?

  • Individual sessions with trained Writing Center instructors
  • Strategies for writing in any academic genres
  • Assistance for writers of all levels
  • Reference material such as dictionaries, thesauri and citation formats for APA, MLA, and Chicago style guides
  • Writing workshops, grammar clinics and tutoring, and outreach presentations
  • Teaching support and consulting for instructors and faculty

The Writing Center does not offer discipline-specific tutoring services or help interpreting course material. If you are struggling in a class, please contact the Center for Academic Success for information about their small-group tutoring services. They provide support for CUA undergraduates with a special focus on freshmen and sophomores settling into major coursework and college life.

Who May Use the Writing Center?

Writing Center services are available to currently registered part- or full-time CUA students, both undergraduate and graduate, studying any discipline. Students are encouraged to visit the Writing Center as writing concerns arise. Students also may be referred by instructors. To refer a student, please email the Director, Dr. Kevin Rulo.

How Do I Sign Up?

You have two options for arranging a meeting with a Writing Center instructor: First, you can make an appointment. Call us at 202-319-4286 or visit the Academic Support Wing and we will walk you through the process of finding a time and day that works for you. Second, you can stop by for a walk-in appointment at either our main location in the Pryz or our satellite location in the Mullen lobby. Walk-in appointments will be served if there are openings in the appointments schedule on a first-come, first-served basis. You may schedule up to 60 minutes of meeting time per week in advance.

How Long Are Appointments?

AppointmentsYou can choose either 30 or 60 minutes. If you are late, we are still happy to see you, but you will only have what remains of your session to work with the consultant.

What Should I Take to My Appointment?

  • The assignment sheet or other written instructions
  • When available, the course rubric and syllabus
  • A printed draft of the paper or any writing already done
  • Any specific questions or concerns you have about the assignment or your writing in general.

What Happens in a Writing Center Session?

The instructor will ask you about your writing concerns and needs and then, using those as a guide, respond to your work as a trained and critical reader. The goal of a session is to work collaboratively with you to not only help you improve a particular paper, but also to help you improve your overall writing abilities.

Writing Center instructors will

  • Help students with "writer's block"
  • Listen and give feedback as students discover and explore new thoughts and ideas
  • Help students translate writing assignments into writing products
  • Help students understand teacher comments in a non-evaluative manner
  • Help writers identify areas for improvement in specific papers
  • Help writers identify areas for improvement in their overall writing style
  • Supervise writers as they revise their own work
  • Help writers develop strategies for progressive writing growth
  • Offer students advice and strategies to improve their proofreading and editing skills
  • Offer specific grammar instruction/tutoring in a one-on-one or small group setting

Writing Center instructors will not

  • Write any portion of a student paper
  • Make corrections for a student writer except by way of example
  • Offer tutorial help in understanding course subject matter
  • Evaluate a professor's assignment
  • Comment on what grade a paper deserves

To view our Editing Policy, please click here.


Location and Hours


Begining Spring 2013, the Writing Center's main location is now in the Pryzbyla Center, room 213. Come and check out the new digs!




Wednesdays, 5-8pm