Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make an appointment?

To make an appointment with a writing tutor, follow the sign-up instructions on ACORN. Appointments may be either 25 or 50 minutes long.

Remember that appointments often fill up quickly during busy times of the term, so get started on your assignments early to make the most of this service!

How do I meet my tutor for an online appointment?

The day before your booked appointment, you will receive an email reminder. Just before your appointment, you will receive an email invitation from a Writing Centre tutor to join a call with them on Teams. At the time of your appointment, simply join the call through your Microsoft Teams App. For the best experience, take the call in a quiet place, use headphones, and have the document with your assignment in it ready to share.

What should I bring with me?
  • A sample of your writing. This will probably be a draft of your assignment or a paper that has already been graded. Feel free to bring your laptop if you prefer to work online.
  • Information about the assignment. This includes any instructions that your professor handed out to the class.
  • Any questions, comments, or concerns. Writing tutorials require your participation; the more engaged you are, the more you will get out of them.
Can I just drop by to get some help?

Yes, we take drop-ins!  Feel free to drop by at any point – if a tutor does not already have a booked appointment with someone else, they can meet with you.

How do I cancel a tutorial?

If you need to cancel your appointment, please log back in to ACORN and delete your booking. Whenever possible, provide 24 hours notice so that your appointment can be made available to someone else.

**A student who fails to show up for 2 booked appointments will have their access to the tutorial service suspended. For the suspension to be lifted, they will need to contact the Coordinator and apologize profusely.**

How often can I come to the Writing Centre?

Students can book one appointment a day, and a maximum of two appointments a week. This policy is in place so that you have time to absorb what you have learned and then apply it to the rest of your writing assignment. The goal of the Writing Centre is not to "fix" mistakes in your paper, but to teach skills that will enable you to become a better writer for the rest of your life. During extra busy times, the Writing Centre may limit tutorial appointments to once a week so that everyone who needs help can access the service.

I just have a quick question. Do I still need to book a 50 minute tutorial session?

To make sure you get the help you need, it is probably best to book a tutorial appointment.  However, the Writing Centre does accept drop-ins if no one else has booked a session.  Just stop by the Writing Centre anytime we're open and there's a good chance one of our helpful tutors will be available to answer your question.

Can I request a specific tutor to work with me?

The Writing Centre does not honour requests from students looking to work with a particular tutor. All of our tutors are rigorously screened and have received extensive peer tutor training. The goal of the Writing Centre is to help you become a better writer. If you only work with one tutor it is easy to become overly dependent on his or her help and this will make it more difficult for you to develop independent writing skills. All of our tutors have something unique to offer and you will benefit greatly from their different approaches and teaching styles.

Are there any restrictions on whom a specific tutor can help?

Yes -- to prevent either a conflict of interest or a confusion of roles, a tutor cannot work with someone whom he or she is T.A.-ing in a course, nor with a close social friend or acquaintance.

How can I get thesis writing help?

If you are an honour's or graduate student, the Coordinator of the Acadia Writing Centre, Dr. Stephen Ahern, is available to work with you one-to-one. This service is free to all Acadia students. To book an appointment, please email Dr. Ahern also gives thesis writing workshops during the academic year. Be sure to check the Writing Centre website for upcoming events.

I am applying for a job or to go to grad school. Can the Writing Centre help with my resume, application, and cover letter?

The Writing Centre can help students with any type of writing. However, Acadia's Co-op and Career Services provides specialized help with writing resumes and cover letters. Send an email to to book an individual consultation. This service is free to all Acadia students.

I am having trouble in one of my courses. Where can I go for help in that subject?

If you are looking for course-specific help as opposed to writing skills help, contact the Acadia Tutoring Service. If you need academic help in a particular subject, fill in the online request form or email and the coordinator of Tutoring Services will connect you with whatever academic services and resources may be available to you.

If there are no free tutoring services in the area you need help with, you can pay for private tutoring. The coordinator will connect you with a peer tutor from the Acadia Tutoring Service. Please note: private tutors will not be available during final exam periods (December and April).

Free tutoring is available on campus for:     

  Mathematics and statistics: drop-in help centre
  Information and communication technology: software training and workshops
  Physics: drop-in help centre

Chemistry: Monday night tutorials


Can a student get suspended from using the Writing Centre?

Yes -- anyone who repeatedly either fails to show up for apppointments, or who harrasses or treats tutors with disrespect, will have their access to the Writing Centre suspended. When the Coordinator of the Centre is satisfied that the unacceptable behaviour has ceased, their access may resume.