Face-to-Face Local Paper Readings

The UWF Writing Lab offers insight into scheduling and preparing for paper reading appointments. "There are no great writers, only great re-writers." --Ernest Hemingway

What should I consider before scheduling an appointment?

  • Determine which type of paper reading appointment you would like to have.  You may need to check with your professor to see which type of paper reading he or she requires.
  • Determine how many appointments you'll need for your paper.  On average, Lab assistants can read between two and seven pages an hour, depending on the quality of the paper and the experience of the Lab assistant.
  • Keep in mind that Lab assistants will not write your papers for you, nor can they help you produce error-free, publishable papers. Their job is to help you write better. 

How do I schedule an appointment?

How should I prepare for my appointment?

  • Create the best draft you can.  The time for a paper reading is limited, and the last thing you want is for the Lab assistant to waste time correcting things that could have been corrected before the paper reading began.
  • If you need to cancel your appointment, contact the appropriate Lab office at least twenty-four hours in advance.  If you need to cancel your appointment while the Lab is closed, you may either call and leave a voicemail message or e-mail us.  Please give us your name, the date and time of your appointment, and the name of your paper reader. Note: If you do not cancel your appointment twenty-four hours in advance, then your appointment will count as a no-show.

What should I bring to my appointment?

  • Bring yourself -- on time.  If you're more than five minutes late, you will lose your appointment to a walk-in, and your appointment will count as a no-show.
  • Print a double-spaced copy of your paper and bring it to your appointment.  The Lab assistant will write possible revisions on that copy, and you will take that marked-up copy with you when you leave. The Lab does not accept e-mailed or faxed papers, and you cannot print your paper at the Lab.  Visit UWF Student Printing to learn how to print.
  • Print your professor's instructions and bring them to your appointment so that the Lab assistant can be sure that you have what your professor wants you to have.
  • Bring hard copies of the sources you used for your paper.

What is my role during the appointment?

  • You must sit with the Lab assistant while he or she reads your paper, so be prepared to be fully engaged throughout the reading, just as you would be during class.  You will have to be present for the entire session.
  • Each appointment lasts one hour, but the paper reader will work on your paper for only 40-50 minutes.  The paper reader will have to spend 10-20 minutes completing a Paper Reading Contract for your professor.  The paper reader will summarize what the two of you discussed and revised during the appointment and e-mail the contract to your professor to prove that a paper reading took place.
  • You do not have to accept every revision your paper reader suggests, but he or she does have to mark each of the recommended revisions on your paper so that there is a record of said revisions.
  • The paper reader is authorized to terminate a reading if you are not interactive or if your behavior suggests that you have come to the Writing Lab to fulfill a course requirement but have no intention of participating in revising and editing your paper.
  • The paper reader will ask you to sign and date the top of your paper to indicate that you have read the paper reading policy and you understand it.
  • The paper reader will make a copy of the signed draft of your paper for Writing Lab records and for review by your professor, if necessary. 

What should I do after my paper reading?

  • Use the marked-up copy you and your paper reader revised as a guide to help you change your paper.
  • The Lab recommends that you submit your feedback copy along with your final draft to your professor.
  • Although the Lab isn't responsible for your grade, you should still keep track of the marked-up copy until after you've received a grade from your professor.