Photo by Myriam Zilleson Unsplash
Happy Holidays from WriteAway
This has been a challenging semester for many, many reasons. Your continued support of WriteAway and your tutors has meant that students can continue to receive feedback on their writing, even when we are all making sacrifices to protect the health of our communities.

As a service coordinator, I often bring a lot of hope to my work with WriteAway: hope that students will use the service, hope that tutors can see the difference their work makes, hope that we will be able to respond to the unpredictability of student demands(!). As we look towards 2021, my hope is that we continue to support one another and continue to connect as a community.

Megan Robertson, WriteAway Coordinator
Supporting an Unprecedented Number of Students
in Unprecedented Times
WriteAway, as an established online service, was in place and ready to increase support during the post-secondary transition to remote emergency instruction. WriteAway developed a COVID-19 Contingency Plan in early March, allowing the service to quickly and seamlessly respond to the potential disruption of on-campus activities.

All participating institutions recognized the importance of WriteAway, as health restrictions limited in-person interactions, and moved swiftly to extend the Spring 2020 semester. Anticipating high student demand for the service, the WriteAway Advisory Committee proactively increased minimum tutoring contributions to ensure more students could receive timely feedback.

The Summer and Fall semesters also saw participating institutions make use of the Flexible Contribution Plan when staffing and scheduling uncertainties presented challenges to meeting tutoring obligations. The flexibility of WriteAway's approach to service contributions means that institutions can meet their commitments as more and more students seek help from WriteAway's highly-trained tutors.

More importantly, WriteAway continues to provide invaluable help for students wanting to improve their writing. 2020 saw the highest-ever number of student submissions (up 22% over 2019), with some institutions seeing more than double the number of submissions compared to the previous year.

Read more about WriteAway’s Pandemic Experience on the Canadian Writing Centres Association website.
Photo by Kevin Butz on Unsplash
Feedback from Students
"I LOVE WRITEAWAY! The tutors are so helpful. I appreciate this free service so much. Thank-you!"
(Thompson Rivers University Student)

"I always feel so satisfied with the service provided. WriteAway has helped me to keep my A's as I transition to my 3rd year of studies." (Langara College)

"The tutor gave me confidence as this is my first time submitting to WriteAway and English is not my first language. I really appreciate your help and also this program. Thank you!
(Coast Mountain College Student)
"This was my first time submitting an assignment more than once. It was great to see how I had improved and where I still should revise and consider. I am very happy with the feedback, which was both constructive and well-informed. The tutors were a great help, but so were the resources they provided. Thank you very much for your help. :)
(North Island College Student)

"Endlessly useful. Under-rated service. So grateful."
(SFU student)
Holiday Reading - Tutor Recommendations!
When asked to name their favourite books, tutors had strong opinions - and many named more than just one!

Here are some recommended reads from the diverse group of tutors that joined WriteAway this year:

  • No Great Mischief (Roz, Camosun College Tutor)
  • Monkey Beach (Caitlin, North Island College Tutor
  • Don Quixote (Gord, Coast Mountain College Tutor)
  • Go, Gone, Went (Louise, Alexander College Tutor)
  • The Lord of the Rings (Christina, Trinity Wester University Tutor)
  • You Are Here (Inbar, UBC tutor)
  • The Sun Also Rises (Liam, Thompson Rivers University Tutor)
  • Everybody Writes (Asha, BCIT Tutor)

and, of course

  • "The One I'm Reading!" (Stella, Coast Mountain College Tutor)

Hopefully the holiday provides time for all of us to pick up a book, or a few!

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash
Connecting Community
Institutional coordinators met regularly during the September-December semester to share insights on:

- recognizing the work of tutors and supporting them during the pandemic
- shifting promotion of services to focus on social media and deepening relationships with instructors
- using open educational resources (OER) to support students.

These important community check-ins help coordinators recognize provincial trends and connect with peers and colleagues across the province.

In March, prior to pandemic restrictions, members of the WriteAway community participated in the BC Writing and Learning Centre Professionals Day hosted by Royal Roads at Sneq’wa e’lun (the Blue Heron House) (pictured, left). We look forward to the day when we'll be able to gather in person to connect and share.

Photo by Megan Robertson
Tutor Appreciation Week
WriteAway celebrated tutor appreciation week - October 5-9.

This year, tutors had a chance to win a coffee e-giftcard.

Coffee is an essential part of writing tutoring and the lucky winners were:

Julia Ready, Camosun College
Luke Shen, Douglas College
Steven Knowles, College of New Caledonia

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash
WriteAway is a service of the BC Electronic Library Network (BC ELN).
Questions? Contact the WriteAway Administrative Centre.