Services help to save grade


With fall semester already in high gear, stress from homework and material comprehension is common.

Luckily, for registered part-time or full-time IVCC students, there are free individualized services in place to help students succeed.

Some may feel reluctant to ask for help; however there are numerous benefits from utilizing the college’s services. Peer Tutoring offers help in all subjects and the Writing Center assists with all areas of the writing process for any class assignment.

Writing Center services are available at the main campus and at the Ottawa Center.

According to the Writing Center’s website, tutors, who are qualified peers or English instructors, will help with any stage of the writing process such as organization and brainstorming, sentence structure revision or MLA/APA/Chicago Style documentation.

The service also offers assistance for English Language Learners, where they can practice their skills with a tutor. One of the many benefits that the appointment offers is an individualized meeting where the student can also take home handouts with various tips on writing subjects.

The main campus Writing Center’s hours are Monday and Wednesday 8 a.m. -3 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and Friday 8 a.m.-2 p.m. and after Sept 29, hours will increase to include evening tutoring services.

Appointments can be made in advance and are reserved for either half-hour or one-hour time slots. Walk-ins are okay if tutors are available.

To schedule an appointment on the main campus, students can call the learning commons at (815) 224-0318, visit the Writing Center in the learning commons (D 201) or print out a downloadable form from their website.

Additional Writing Center information can be found online at, where students can view a detailed tutor schedule, email a quick query or download and print out an appointment form.

The Ottawa Center hours are: Monday/Wednesday/Friday 9 a.m.-12 p.m. and Tuesday/Thursday 1:15-4:15 p.m. To make an appointment, students can sign up for an appointment at the front desk or call (815) 224-0800.

Main campus Peer Tutoring is located in the learning commons (D 201) and is open from Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. According to Cathi Nelson, director of Peer Tutoring, the most common service sought is chemistry and math assistance. Students are able to receive to help in any subject.

Nelson added, “If a student has a ‘B’ or higher in a subject, than that student is qualified to tutor the peer who is seeking assistance. With the teacher’s help, we can find a tutor for any subject.”

At Peer Tutoring, an unexpected subject that students may not realize they can receive help with is philosophy. Nelson explained that with philosophy, the tutor will discuss the assigned readings and converse with the student.

Lauren Wahl, a second-year student and business major at IVCC, visits Peer Tutoring almost every day. What she favors the most about Peer Tutoring is the one-on-one help.

The busy student also added that “you can work independently, but then you can get help once you’re stuck. It is a lot better than sitting there not knowing what to do next.”

When asked why Nelson is such a revered tutor, Wahl said, “Cathi takes the time to get to know you personally and she’s there for you. She has a good sense of humor and is funny, too.”

Spending most of her free time on campus at Peer Tutoring, the dedicated student has received help in numerous subjects including: Math 0906 and 0907, college algebra, accounting, business calculus and English. Wahl is one of the many students that regularly utilize Peer Tutoring.

According to the Ottawa Center’s Peer Tutoring Web site, math tutoring is available at the Ottawa Center as follows: Mondays/Wednesdays 10 a.m.-12 p.m. (quiet study room) Thursdays 4–5:30 p.m. (room 112) and Fridays 10-11 a.m. (quiet study room). Through Dec 5 an appointment is not necessary.

If students have questions, they can contact Nelson, director of Peer Tutoring, at [email protected] or by phone at (815) 224-0479.

Faculty, staff and peers are ready to help, so make an appointment at the Writing Center or with Peer Tutoring today.