Writing Center consultants are available to lead in-class workshops on any of the topics listed below. If you are a faculty member or a teaching assistant and would like to schedule a workshop for your class, review the policies below and then email writing@usc.edu.

Meet the Writing Center (15 Minutes)

This fifteen-minute presentation provides an overview of the Writing Center’s services.  Writing Center consultants will describe what happens during a typical session, provide a brief tour of our web resources, and explain how students can book an appointment.

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Building Stronger Arguments

This workshop explores three qualities that make academic arguments successful: specificity, coherence, and originality.  Consultants will encourage students to develop arguments with carefully defined terms and clearly delineated connections among the ideas.  Finally, consultants will discuss how audience awareness can lead writers to more productive, original arguments.

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Four Ways of Using Sources

This workshop demonstrates how writers can go beyond straightforward quotation to engage sources in deeper conversation.  Writing Center consultants will review four ways to use sources, emphasizing that students should focus not only on what a source is but what a source can do in the context of an argument.

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Clarity and Flow

This workshop presents a variety of organizational tactics to help writers clarify and showcase their ideas. Writing Center consultants will provide tips to reduce wordiness, while improving paragraph cohesion and transitions.

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The “So What?” Factor

This workshop presents the basic rhetorical moves that writers make to articulate the significance of their arguments.  Rather than focusing simply on thesis construction, Writing Center consultants will demonstrate how writers put their arguments in context, thus lending their essays a sense of purpose and direction.

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Grammar, Punctuation, and Syntax

This session reviews a variety of grammatical and syntactical conventions. In an interactive session modeled on a game of Jeopardy!, consultants will cover topics ranging from comma splices and misplaced modifiers to subject/verb agreement and the passive voice.

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Proofreading and Polishing

This workshop presents proofreading as a skill that everyone can learn.  Writing Center consultants will suggest techniques to become a more confident proofreader, while covering the most common grammatical and stylistic adjustments that writers make during the proofreading process.

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Information and Policies

Workshops are fifty minutes long and interactive in nature.

No advance reading or preparation is required.

Workshops must be requested at least two weeks in advance.

The instructor or teaching assistant must be present while the workshop is conducted.

When requesting an in-class workshop, instructors should provide two or three potential dates. We cannot guarantee availability on any given day/time, but we will work hard to accommodate your class schedule.

Workshops can be in person or online. Workshops on HSC or outside of business hours (9am – 5pm) are only offered online. We cannot provide workshops on the weekend.

Instructors may request up to two presentations per semester. For a large class with multiple sections, please contact the Writing Center Director. We are happy to meet with T.A.s and walk them through our teaching materials, which they can independently present to multiple sections.