The Writing Lab has numerous texts and reference handbooks on grammar and usage. These books are available for use in the Lab only. Available on a student checkout basis are books on rhetoric, composition, sentence combining, paragraph writing, technical writing, and résumé writing and letters of application.
The Essay Bank consists of a wide variety of exemplary essays by UWF students (English majors and non-majors) previously or currently enrolled in writing classes. This bank draws the interest of students, especially those who need extra assistance with preparing to take, for example, the CLAST Essay Subtest or those who need help with composing or planning their out-of-class essays. These students can refer whenever possible to the essays themselves for illustrations of successful compositions. To permit unity and easy access, the Essay Bank is located in the Writing Lab; essays will be available for students' analyses and review in the Lab only. Sample essays of these types are available:
Also available are documented essays using the MLA format.
Help is available for students preparing to take the ELS and essay subtests of the CLAST(College-Level Academic Skills Test) as well as the writing portion of the teacher-competency exam.
The Lab offers individualized instruction in basic grammatical skills. Typically, after independent study in the Lab, a student takes a number of mastery tests on grammatical and mechanical skills such as subject-verb agreement, diction, commas, and sentence errors. These tests are scored as soon as they are completed to give the student immediate feedback. Students should achieve a test score of 75% or better to demonstrate proficiency. If a mastery test score indicates a need for further help, a lab assistant will provide additional explanation and administer an alternate test.
As the name suggests, the Diagnostic Test is designed as purely a diagnostic instrument of the test taker's skills in grammar, usage, and mechanics. Students who take this test are given an Inventory of Errors Sheet, which shows the grammatical and mechanical areas that need attention.
To demonstrate proficiency of a skill, a student may opt to take one of the many mastery tests available in the Lab. Should a student not attain a satisfactory score on the first attempt, there are alternate forms of each test. The number of attempts per test is limited to the number of alternate forms available. Tests are available on 18 different areas.
The Lab has available a number of resources for students enrolled in business and professional writing courses. Among these resources are skills tests, sample résumés, and sample reports and proposals.
Take-home mastery tests are available only to students who are in a self-study program or to students who, at the request of a teaching assistant, are assigned these as supplementary exercises.