Online Services

Student at a desk in front of computer monitor

For Distance and Online Students: The Upper Iowa University Writing Center offers writing consultations for all online and center students via our Email Tutoring Service. This service is designed to connect you with one of our trained Writing Consultants, who will provide you with detailed feedback for your writing project.

Have a question for us? We’re happy to help! Read on to find answers to frequently asked questions. Or, if you don’t see your question answered here, fill out THIS FORM and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

What kinds of projects can I send? At the Writing Center, our mission is to serve all members of Upper Iowa University by working with them across disciplines, in all modalities, and at any stage of the writing process. This means that we respond to all writers and writing projects.

I’m working on a large project, can I still send it? With lengthy writing submissions such as graduate theses, ongoing research, or senior projects, (those of 10 or more double-spaced pages), we encourage you to initiate the consultation process early and in stages. Sending your work to us in chapters or sections creates an ongoing dialogue that will allow your consultant, over time, to provide you with more personal, detailed, and holistic feedback. This method also gives you the opportunity to incorporate that feedback throughout the writing process, instead of scrambling to make major changes or revisions last minute.

What sort of response can I expect? Based on your concerns, your Writing Consultant will provide a personalized letter detailing 3 or more opportunities or areas of focus for your revisions. Whenever possible, your Consultant will also connect you with further information or resources you may find helpful.

How do I make an Email Tutoring appointment? Our Email Tutoring Service is asynchronous, meaning that you do not need to set an appointment at a specific time. Instead, email your submission to and include the items listed below. We respond to all email submissions in the order in which they are received, typically within 48 hours on business days (this timeline is approximate, and not guaranteed during busy periods such as midterm and finals weeks).

What should I include in my Email Tutoring submission? To make sure you get the most out of your consultation, we ask that you include the following items with your submission:

  1. Your Top Three Concerns: In order to ensure your most pressing writing questions are addressed during your consultation, it is helpful to take some time beforehand to articulate (in the body of your email) the specific concerns you would like your Consultant to focus on when responding to your work. Some examples include:
    • Thesis & keywords
    • Avoiding plagiarism
    • Organization & structure
    • Patterns of grammatical error
    • Understanding assignment requirements & criteria
    • Formatting & citation styles (MLA, APA, AP, Chicago)
  2. A Microsoft Word Document: We ask that all writing submissions be formatted as a Microsoft Word document.
  3. Instructions: It is very helpful for you to include any criteria, rubrics, course materials, or information provided by your instructor to your consultation, as your Consultant may be able to make additional suggestions about formatting, structure, and content based on these materials.
  4. Feedback: If you have already received feedback from an instructor, peer, or other party about your writing, it is also helpful for you to include that feedback for your Consultant to consider when making additional suggestions.

Can I send something again after I revise it? Of course! We are here for you at every stage of the writing process, and happy to provide ongoing feedback as you write, reflect, and revise. If a Writing Consultant has already responded to some element of the project you wish to resubmit, please indicate this in your email.