The Office of the Dean for Student Life offers tailored support and advising to Dix Scholars, encouraging and supporting you as you work to attain your goals, while recognizing your need to balance student life, work, family, and numerous other obligations.
Additionally, a student support network, also facilitated by the Office of the Dean of Student Life, provides current and new Dix Scholars the chance to meet together, share experiences, support one another, and relax!
Center for Academic Achievement
The Center for Academic Achievement (CAA) is a vital element in ensuring that all students have a productive and rewarding educational experience. The CAA is committed to providing quality academic supports, services, and resources that enhance the learning experience of both undergraduate and graduate students. Additionally, the CAA wants to encourage the highest level of scholarship and achievement possible for all students by providing resources to students who wish to challenge themselves to higher levels of excellence. The ultimate intent of the CAA is to help students become independent learners and to encourage them to take an active part in their educational and intellectual pursuits.
Course content tutors are available in many of the major concentrations i.e. math, biology, chemistry, physics and modern languages among others. Each semester faculty from various disciplines recommend students who have successfully completed their courses to act as peer tutors for the Academic Support Center. Tutors review assignments in detail; help students plan long and short-term goals: and assist students in becoming independent learners. Tutors help students develop methods to find the answer to their questions, not the answers themselves.
Short-term course content tutors are available by appointment to assist students with a variety of courses such as biology, chemistry, physics and nursing.
A study skills tutor is available by appointment to work with students around strategies, techniques and tips for comprehending readings and preparing for exams, as well as time management.
The Academic Support Center provides study groups, which are led by peer tutors who have been recommended by the professor. Study Group leaders offer weekly reviews of course material in many of the major concentrations, i.e., management, economics, biology, chemistry and math. The groups meet twice a week throughout the semester under the guidance of a trained student who has successfully completed the course. Students work together to organize the week's notes, practice using concepts and formulas, prepare for quizzes and exams while learning how to develop good study habits.
The Burns Writing and Peer-Tutoring Center
If you have been out of school for a while, the Writing Center can support your transition back into college. The Writing Center helps students become confident and independent writers. Peer tutors from graduate and undergraduate programs work with students in one-on-one sessions.
They welcome all levels of writers and work on all stages of the writing process, for example, from brainstorming to organizing ideas, from articulating an argument to integrating supporting evidence, or from citing sources to correcting errors. All tutors are trained to work with the writing of native as well as non-native speakers, and offer support for the full writing process: reading, planning, drafting, revising, citing, and self-editing.
The Writing Center is open Monday through Saturday during the fall and spring semesters and part time in the summer. The Writing Center is located in on the Academic Campus. Students can call to make an appointment or drop in.
The Writing Center, in its effort to strengthen students' academic reading, writing, critical thinking, and research skills, offers:
- One-on-one tutoring
- Online tutoring
The Burns Writing and Peer Tutoring Center offers one-on-one writing tutoring to all Simmons students. Graduate and undergraduate peer tutors can address your writing concerns whether you are a first year student or working on your senior thesis.
Online Writing Tutoring
Online tutoring helps make getting feedback on your writing easy and accessible. Tutoring takes place through an online submission and e-mail, instead of face-to-face in the Writing Center. You submit a piece of writing via email, and then the online tutor will give you feedback via email as well.
Like our face-to-face tutors, the online tutor will look for patterns in your writing and comment on issues such as organization, clarity, grammar, and documentation. In addition to comments (either within your paper or in her email), the tutor may refer you to outside resources to get additional practice on issues such as grammar or documentation.
Writing Center Workshops
The following are some of the workshops we have offered in the past.
- Introduction to APA Style
APA is the documentation style used by the social sciences and required in many fields such as psychology and social work. This workshop will give you an overview of how use the APA standards for documenting your sources and formatting your paper.
- Introduction to MLA Style
MLA is the documentation style required in most literature and humanities courses. This workshop will give you an overview of how to document your sources using MLA--how to create in-text citations and a "works cited" page, as well as how to format your paper according to MLA standards.
Writing Better Sentences Workshops:
Write effective sentences so you can write effective essays! These workshops focus on writing at the sentence-level. We identify common patterns of errors in sentences and discuss strategies for spotting and avoiding them. You will be given multiple examples and models and receive handouts and worksheets to help you develop your skills further.
These workshops build off and complement each other, but it is not necessary to make it to every one.
- Writing Better Sentences I
Components of a sentence; independent and dependent clauses; fragments and run-ons.
- Writing Better Sentences II
Writing with clarity and precision: wordiness, passive voice, misplaced and dangling modifiers.
- Writing Better Sentences III
Sentence structure and variety
Are you writing a research paper? We offer on-going clinics for individual assistance with any stage of the research or writing process. Clinics are staffed by a Writing Center tutor and a reference librarian to help you with things such as:
- finding books, articles, and high-quality websites on your topic
- searching electronic databases
- evaluating the quality of your information sources
- organizing your information and ideas
- conveying your argument clearly
- using APA, MLA, or other documentation styles
- avoiding plagiarism
No appointment is necessary for these ongoing research clinics. Students may drop by with a few quick questions, or stay longer for more extensive help. Some just come in to use a computer and work on a paper, knowing that professional assistance is conveniently nearby.
Intimidated by technology? There's no need to be! The Pottruck Technology Resource Center (PTRC) offers a range of services to help ensure adult students succeed at Simmons and beyond! Services that the PTRC offers include:
- Training Classes
- One-on-One Consultation with Professional Staff
- Computer Self-Help Clinics so you can learn to trouble shoot and solve software issues on your own
- Professional development including conferences, workshops, and special events
- Support with Web-Enhanced Courses
Finally, if you ever run into a technology problem, the Technology Help Desk is just a phone call away!