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New Program to Assist International Graduate Students With Writing Announced

The Department of English, UTK Writing Center, University Libraries, and College of Arts and Sciences are pleased to announce a new service in Spring Semester, 2016, to assist international graduate students with writing. Consultation will be available by appointment and on a drop-in basis at a satellite office of the Writing Center located in Room 220G, Commons North, Hodges Library.  Services will be provided by an ESL writing specialist from the Department of English. Appointments may be scheduled beginning January 18, 2016.  Interested students should send an email request for more information or to schedule an appointment to:

Depending on interest, group workshops may be held during the semester.  To receive announcements, please send a message to with “graduate workshop notification” in the subject line.  This new service is offered to all UTK international graduate students as a pilot project.  For Spring semester, 2016, staffing will be at 10 hours per week, funded by the Department of English and the UTK Writing Center.  We plan to assess demand, with the hope of expanding services after the pilot project concludes.

As noted in an article by Tanner Hancock in UT’s Daily Beacon the program was

[f]irst developed by Writing Center director Kirsten Benson, the idea came after she noticed more and more non-native English speakers arriving at the center to improve their writing skills. More often than not, these students excelled in their coursework, but Benson still observed that without the proper guidance, the hurdle of writing in English soon became a deterrence to academic improvement.

“This has the possibility of having a huge impact on the quality of the work that these students are able to produce,” Benson said. “Hopefully, there’s such a great demand that we’ll be able to show that the university needs to continue this service.”



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