The University of Pittsburgh Writing Center is now offering online tutorials to extend access to our services to clients unable to visit our campus location during normally scheduled hours.
Appointments run from 30-minutes to an hour, and resemble our in-person meetings, but are held through a digital workspace with integrated video chat. Online appointments can be made and accessed in the WC Online System.
How to Make an Appointment
Please note: the interface described below works best when your computer's software is up to date.
In order to sign up for an online tutorial, you will need to create an account at pitt.mywconline.com.
Look through the schedule for tutors listed as “Face-to-face or online.” Click on an open timeslot and complete the form, being sure to select “Schedule Online Appointment” to reserve your spot. You can sign up for either a 30-minute or hour-long session, but if it’s your first online appointment, it is a good idea to sign up for a full hour (if available), in case there are technical questions or glitches during the set-up and/or session. Please try to log in a few minutes before start time to set up everything, and run the program in either Google Chrome or Firefox, and use headphones.
How to Enter the Workspace
You can enter the online workspace as soon as you make your appointment, and can import the document you plan to work on into the central "whiteboard" before (or during) the appointment using the multidirectional arrow button on the top right of the screen. When opened, the whiteboard is filled with instructional text (copied in a screenshot below), which is replaced by the client’s text as soon as a document is imported. The whiteboard can be live-edited, and is flanked by video on the left and a text chat box on the right.
Unfortunately, this system eliminates formatting and visuals, so if these are important factors of your project, please email your tutor a copy beforehand if possible in PDF form. Your tutor’s email should be available in WC Online, but if you have any difficulty locating it, you can contact the Writing Center directly.
After the session, your tutor will provide you with a feedback survey link. It is important that you select your tutor’s name from the pull-down menu when you fill out this survey: pitt.mywconline.com/survey.php.
Recording the Session
WC Online automatically records the changes made to the text document during a session – you can review session progress by playing it back with the the timeslider button to the right of the import/export button.
Another note on recording: There are tutors and researchers in the writing center who may ask to make audiovisual recordings of some sessions for educational purposes. We would never record you without explicitly asking your permission first, and would only use these for educational purposes, such as for internal training and academic research. Likewise, if you would like to record a session for your own use, please ask your tutor for consent before doing so.