GEOG 430
Human Use of the Environment

Writing Tutor for Online Courses


World Campus currently provides online writing tutorials for students. These 60-minute sessions are facilitated by an undergraduate student who has completed extensive training to become a writing tutor. This tutor and student writers will use Blackboard Collaborate software to look over the writing project and send real-time messages or use microphones to engage in a conversation about it.

An online tutorial is not vastly different from a face-to-face meeting with a writing tutor. Online tutorials help students address large-scale issues in writing projects such as the following:

  • clarifying your purpose
  • organizing your ideas logically
  • better addressing your audience
  • making effective transitions between paragraphs and sections
  • strengthening your supportive evidence

The tutor can also provide limited suggestions to address grammar, punctuation, citation guidelines, and other more localized writing issues.

Visit World Campus Tutoring and Technology Resources.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I initiate a request to see an online writing tutor?

  1. Register for an account at the Penn State Learning appointment scheduler (WCOnline) if this is your first visit.
  2. Log in to WCOnline following the directions supplied at the top of the scheduler page.
  3. Select a one-hour open appointment (appears in white; times are US Eastern Standard/Daylight), and provide your name, phone number, and (in the “Notes” field) your e-mail address and any notes for the tutor about the writing project.
  4. Select “Save Appointment.”

What do I do next?

  1. As soon as possible, visit Blackboard Collaborate’s Product Support page to ensure that your computer is equipped with the proper software (you will need Java). We recommend using Firefox as the Web browser for your tutoring session.
  2. Fifteen minutes before your appointment, log in to WCOnline and select your tutor’s name to take you to the Blackboard Collaborate tutoring session. If you scheduled your appointment more than 24 hours in advance, you will receive an e-mail reminder containing a link to your session.

The World Campus & Continuing Education HelpDesk
(800) 252-3592 or (814) 865-0047

Hours of Operation
08:00 AM - Midnight Eastern Time, Monday through Friday
10:00 AM - 7:00 PM Eastern Time, Saturday
10:00 AM – Midnight Eastern Time, Sunday

Questions or comments

Please contact Leagh Anderson if the available times do not fit your schedule or if you have any other questions or comments about online writing tutoring.

Leagh Anderson, Learning Community Associate
205 Boucke Building
Penn State Learning
Penn State University
(814) 563-8183

University Park students can also receive in-person writing tutoring by either appointment or a walk-in basis. Please visit: Penn State Learning for more information.