Writing Center logo
Student Resources Online Tutoring OWL Workshop Calendar Faculty Resources Tutor Resources ASC Home page

OWL Frequently Asked Questions

woman and keyboard
  1. Who will look at my paper?

    One of our specially trained Writing Center tutors will respond to your work.

  2. Can I request a particular tutor?

    You are welcome to request a particular tutor; however, the tutor you request may or may not be available to respond within a reasonable amount of time, in which case another tutor will help you.

  3. How long will it take?

    You should receive an email confirmation of your request immediately. Submissions sent after 6:00 p.m. Monday-Thursday (after 4:00 p.m. Friday) will be considered received at 8:00 a.m. the following working day. Tutoring response time will generally be within 48 hours (Monday - Friday), but at certain times of the semester, it may be longer. If we expect our response to be delayed, we will send you an email to let you know. Keep in mind that our tutors do not work weekends, so the 48 hour response time does not include Saturday, Sundays, or major holidays.

  4. I need feedback right away. What should I do?

    If you need immediate assistance, please come in person to the Writing Center. Our Fall and Spring hours are Monday through Thursday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. We're located in room 420D inside the ASC building.

  5. What does “OWL” stand for?

    OWL is an abbreviation for Online Writing Lab. We use that name because it's easier to say and remember than OWC (Online Writing Center).

  6. Do I have to be in an online course to use the OWL?

    No. The OWL is available to all currently enrolled Southwestern College students.

  7. My paper is finished, and I just need it proofread. Can you correct it and send it back to me?

    The Writing Center’s mission is to guide and teach writers rather than to just fix papers. We can certainly help you with proofreading strategies, but in order for you to get the most from the Center, it’s important that you learn to recognize and correct your own errors. We can help you with that.

  8. I sent in my paper, but I haven’t received a confirmation of my request. Why not?

    You may be experiencing one of the following email problems:
  • You entered an incorrect email address when you submitted your work. The OWL will automatically reply to whatever email address you entered, so even if there’s just a minor typo, you won’t get our messages. Resubmit your request, checking your email address carefully.
  • Your email service uses a spam/junk mail filter, and your tutor's reply went into that folder. When you are expecting a response, check both your Inbox and Junk/Spam folders.
  • Your email account is no longer active. (Free email providers like Yahoo and Hotmail will cancel accounts that haven’t been used for a certain period of time.) If this is the case, you will need to create a new email account and resubmit your request.
  • Your email account is full. (Free email providers also limit the amount of mail they will store. If your account is full, it won’t accept any new mail.) In this case, simply delete some email to make more room, and then resubmit your request. Messages with attachments and embedded images are notorious space hogs, so you might want to delete those first.
  • Your email service is otherwise not working. We see this occasionally with hotmail accounts in particular. If you are expecting a reply and don't receive one, please write owlswc@yahoo.com and include your name, your instructor's name, and your class.