Writing Services for Capella Writers

by | June 12, 2009

Smarthinking offers a variety of services for Capella writers. Historically, Capella’s primary relationship with Smarthinking has involved tutoring on writing. Writers can send in a piece of writing and ask for feedback on that writing from a Smarthinking tutor by going to the public Capella writing center homepage at www.capellawriting.center.org, and then clicking on the ‘Tutoring’ link to set up an account to access those services and feedback. That relationship remains strong and is now accompanied with many other options.

For example, writers who are new to English and/or American academic writing can use the tutorials and exercises sections to grow stronger in the communication skills needed for clear, concise academic writing.

These tools work well with Capella’s own Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) tools, like the Personal Writing Assessment (PWA), an assessment that allows writers to know where they stand in terms of Capella’s expectations for academic writing. Graduate learners in the PhD programs are exposed to this tool at Track 1, but if you want to reinforce the PWA for those learners or share this resource with those not in PhD programs, simply send them to the public Capella Writing Center home page at www.capellawritingcenter.org, and ask them to click on PWA under the ‘Resources’ section of the page.

On the other end of the spectrum, writers who are nearing the end of their journey in a PhD program can continue their relationship with Smarthinking tutors by submitting sections of the Dissertation–from proposal to final draft–to Smarthinking and asking for feedback. In fact, the only time that learner cannot use Smarthinking for tutoring and writing feedback is during the Comprehensive Exams process, as that process is considered to be a test, so no consultation with those outside the Comps Committee is allowed by the learner.

While Smarthinking is a valuable resource on it’s own, the services can be made stronger still when the writer understands how to ask for specific feedback on specific writing or citing issues. Capella offers a WAC resource to help learners become more familiar with the components of academic writing on the public Writing Center home page (www.capellawritingcenter.org). Under ‘Resources’ on that page, learners can access the Writing Feedback Tool (WFT). That tool outlines Capella’s expectations for academic writing in an 11-step process, a process detailed in the WFT. Additionally, Capella’s resources to help writers in each of the 11 categories is also provided in this tool along with hotlinks that guide learners to specific, focused writing support for the 11 steps in the process.
As you work through your writing tasks in this course, you are encouraged to use the resources provided by Capella to help you grow and to advance in your academic writing process.

To get started, please visit Capella’s now-public Writing Center home page at www.capellawritingcenter.org
Under the ‘Resources’ section in the middle of the page, the first link is ‘Tutoring.’ Click on this link to set up your Smarthinking account, to take a tour of the Smarthinking services (including tutoring, instructional materials, and opportunities for asking questions about wriitng), and to get started in using Smarthinking.

The second link on the Writing Center home page takes you to Capella’s Writing Feedback Tool, a chart defining Capella’s expectations for academic writing. This tool allows you to look at academic writing as a process, and you can access instructional materials with the hotlinks available in this tool.

The third link on the Writing Center home page takes you to Capella’s Personal Writing Assessment, a brief series of questions that allows you to see where you stand in terms of Capella’s expectations for academic writing. Taking this assessment can give you good ideas on how to start growing as an academic writer over a period of time.

Using these three resources, along with all of the materials in Capella’s Writing Center, can really help you on your journey as an academic writer and communicator at Capella, so you are encourged to build in time for these resources throughout your academic career.

5 Responses to "Writing Services for Capella Writers"

  1. Janora Winsor says:

    I have found all the Library resources so useful. I have also suggested to others who ask me for assistance to check out the writing center. Perhaps they do not want to, would rather I hold their hand, but in this PhD journey, there are no hand holdings going on.
    RefWorks was a little challenging at first, but this could be due to my own learning curve, and trying to learn how to build a webpage from scratch at the same time (too much computer is bad for anyone!).
    I just figured out some really usuful benefits RefWorks offers in this last assignment I completed. It takes time to learn the management of the program, but once you have it down, it is a valuable tool.
    The Writing Center helped me through my Master’s and now through my PhD. I will be writing along, and suddenly don’t remember how to cite something, or have another APA question, I don’t even have to get my lazy but off the chair, I just go to the Library Writing Center. My question is answered, and on I go.
    I will say, when I was suddenly just an Alumni, and did not have full access to all the tools, I felt lost. I love to do research beyond the class work, and I missed all the resources.

  2. Dr Stone Shiflet says:

    First, let me say that I am delighted to see that as alumni, you are still writing and looking for tools to help.

    That’s why we are so excited to note that our writing center is now public, available at http://www.capellawritingcenter.org.

    So as alumni, you can use all of our wriitng center tools; in fact, the whole center is open to every at that address, though smarthinking, our personal tutoring service, is still reserved only for active learners.

    Thanks for writing, and thanks for using the writing resources–a writing center designed by Capella faculty specifically for the needs of the APA writer.

    all best-

    Stone

    Coordinator, Writing Across the Curriculum.

  3. Cathy Worthington says:

    I am a recent graduate of Capella; as an alumni, may I still use

    Smarthinking?

    Cathy W

    • Lynn Riskedal says:

      Cathy:
      Unfortunately, alumni do not have access to Smarthinking.
      Capella pays for the service for current learners.

      Sorry.

      Lynn

  4. Sharon JTaylor says:

    I just figured out some really usuful benefits RefWorks offers in this last assignment I completed. It takes time to learn the management of the program, but once you have it down, it is a valuable tool.

    I will say, when I was suddenly just an Alumni, and did not have full access to all the tools, I felt lost. I love to do research beyond the class work, and I missed all the resources.