Skip to main content

Tutor Responsibilities and Qualifications

The Writing and Learning Commons (WaLC) provides small-group tutoring for specific classes that have been approved for tutoring by the Director and by course instructors. The WaLC’s ability to provide tutors with clients is contingent upon supply and demand, program funding, faculty approval and support, and the tutor’s willingness to fulfill the responsibilities outlined below. Noncompliance with any of these responsibilities may result in termination of employment.

Tutor Responsibilities

Facilitate Learning

  • Conduct small-group tutoring sessions in which each student is actively involved in exploring and learning the material.
  • Review course concepts, provide alternate explanations, and offer multiple strategies for reviewing and reinforcing information.
  • Work through sample problems and questions with students, emphasizing the process of learning rather than the product.
  • Encourage students to do most of the talking and writing in your tutoring sessions; give students an opportunity to articulate what they know, to explain concepts to you (or to other students in the session), and to formulate questions about the material.
  • Offer effective organization and study strategies and refer students to an Academic Skills Consultant if they need additional help with note taking, reading comprehension, test preparation and test taking, time management, or study skills.
  • Promote independence and work towards making yourself obsolete. Help students to identify resources and to develop problem-solving strategies they can apply to other learning situations.

Act as a Liaison between Students and Instructors

  • Communicate with course instructors and familiarize yourself with the instructor’s expectations for students.
  • Ask instructors for a list of assignments, quizzes, or take home tests that are off limits for tutoring sessions.
  • Work with other tutors and with instructors to ensure that a tutor visits each class to explain the WaLC’s policies and procedures.
  • Consult with course instructors throughout the semester to discuss assignments, expectations, and any questions you have about the course.
  • Ask instructors to add you to their Blackboard courses.
  • Encourage students to communicate with their instructors outside of class about their progress and any questions they have about the material; if necessary, help students formulate a list of questions to take to the professor.
  • Request a copy of the course textbook from the instructor if a copy is not already available in the WaLC. Textbooks are stored in the WaLC so all tutors have access to them during sessions.
  • Record detailed, objective summaries of your tutoring sessions in GradesFirst after each appointment.

Demonstrate Professional and Ethical Behavior

  • Act in accordance with the WaLC's Code of Ethics.
  • Comply with and enforce the WaLC’s Policies for Students.
  • Report to tutoring sessions on time and avoid canceling appointments. Notify the WaLC (828-227-2274) immediately if you will be late or unable to keep a scheduled appointment with a student. In the case of cancelations, attempt to contact the students and to reschedule their appointments.
  • Provide at least two weeks notice if you intend to terminate your employment. Communicate with course instructors and other successful students to recruit new tutors to fill your position.
  • Maintain a consistent number of tutoring hours for the duration of the semester. Do not make drastic changes to your schedule without first consulting with the Director.
  • Establish appropriate physical, emotional, and social boundaries with the students you serve. Notify the Director immediately if you are unable to do so.
  • Respond to students within the limits of your training, position, and expertise. Tutors are not expected to re-lecture course material, to complete students’ homework for them, to suggest a grade for an assignment discussed in the tutoring session, or to engage in negative talk about an instructor’s teaching methods, grading policies, assignments, or personality.
  • Model successful student behavior when questions arise that you are not able to answer. Help students identify other sources (the course instructor, textbook, or other students or tutors) of information about the topic.
  • Respond within 12 hours to phone calls from the WaLC Executive Team and within 24 hours to emails from the WaLC.
  • Clean up your area at the conclusion of each tutoring session: wipe down whiteboards and tables, throw away trash, and return any borrowed WaLC materials to their appropriate places.

Participate in Tutor Training

  • Enroll in USI 202 (Introduction to Peer Tutoring). Successful completion of USI 202 and 25 hours of actual tutoring time will qualify you for Tutor Certification through the College Reading and Learning Association.
  • Read the WaLC Course Tutor Manual and complete additional training activities as assigned.
  • Participate in professional development opportunities provided by WaLC staff during the semester.
  • Attend WaLC staff meetings one to two times per semester to receive training and updates, to establish your tutoring schedule for the next semester, and to provide feedback to the Executive Team.
  • Review documents in the WaLC Blackboard course (located under “My Organizations”) and refer to them as needed.

Fulfill Administrative Responsibilities

  • Submit hiring form to Career Services (non-work study positions) or Financial Aid (work study positions) prior to your first day of work.
  • Complete direct deposit paperwork (available from the Career Services or Financial Aid offices). All student employees are required to enroll in the direct deposit program.
  • Record your hours on your timesheet every week and submit your timesheet every other week.
  • Check your Catamount email regularly for appointment confirmations and updates from the WaLC.
  • Submit documentation of your visits to classes.
  • Use GradesFirst to maintain up-to-date contact information (cell phone and home phone numbers); establish and maintain a tutoring schedule with up to 20 hours/week of tutoring time; and create accurate records of your actual tutoring time (log in for 15 minutes for no-shows).

Tutor Qualifications

To be eligible for a tutoring position in the WaLC, you must:

  • Maintain a cumulative 3.0 GPA.
  • Have earned an 'A' in each course you wish to tutor, have written approval from the instructor, or have departmental recommendations.
  • Provide at least two recommendation forms from faculty members at WCU (see application for details).
  • Possess excellent communication skills.
  • Demonstrate enthusiasm for helping students to improve their knowledge of course content and effective study habits.
  • Be eligible for on-campus student employment by reviewing the requirements listed on the work-study and/or non work-study student employment websites.
  • Enroll in USI 202 (Introduction to Peer Tutoring).
Office of Web Services