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Overview

“The E-Consulting UBERdoc” aims to help consultants address common surface, global, citation, and plagiarism issues in online student work. It contains

  • 9 Email responses
  • 11 Grammar & Style comments
  • 25 Punctuation comments
  • 10 Global Issue comments
  • 38 APA comments
  • 18 MLA comments
  • 7 Resume & Cover Letter comments
  • 6 Plagiarism comments

Purpose & Use

The UBERdoc provides the following purposes and benefits.

Student & Consultant Learning. Students should be provided with options for revising their writing and with reasoning behind our suggestions, so they can apply feedback to future writing. Students should be given accurate, consistent information that aids their learning. The UBERdoc’s comments (particularly those for surface issues) are purposely worded to minimize technical language and provide explanations, examples, and links to outside resources. The surface-level and APA/MLA comments are also meant to assist consultants who aren’t yet confident in these areas. Consultants who regularly use the UBERdoc may improve and re-enforce their own knowledge, which they can further apply to their face-to-face sessions.

Careful Language. Several ethical considerations come into play when responding online. Consultants will likely encounter forms of plagiarism, both intentional and unintentional. The UBERdoc provides carefully-developed explanations for citing, quoting, and paraphrasing appropriately, without directly accusing the student of plagiarism. All of our comments are worded to avoid commands and negative language, in order to respect students’ agency. Through learning by example, consultants can absorb ethical approaches and respectful language that they can apply to all writing center sessions.

Personalization. This document is not intended to be a pre-written response system. Rather, it should act as a starting point or foundation for personalized feedback on tricky issues. Consultants are encouraged to shape or tailor these responses to address specific issues in a student’s paper. This includes incorporating praise, tying feedback to the student’s specific sentence or paragraph, and relating that feedback to other comments or other parts of the student’s paper. Furthermore, consultants should only use parts of UBERdoc comments that are relevant to that particular student. Administrators are also encouraged to personalize the UBERdoc to the needs of their writing center or educational institution. Please feel free to reword, remove, or add responses as you see fit.

Efficiency. UBERdoc responses are indexed and programmed with Word’s navigation headings, for quick accessibility. Like face-to-face sessions, consultants have limited time (usually 50 minutes) to work with an online student. While consultants can’t and shouldn’t cover every issue or every page, this document provides a foundation for common issues to be addressed more quickly. This can allow consultants to use their session time more effectively. Consultants may find more time to comment on global issues, providing deeper commentary on student writing.

Heuristic Proofreading. Not every online session will address surface-level issues, but there are times where they can and probably should. Students who are in the polishing stage and/or have requested help with specific grammar or punctuation issues should have opportunities to learn rules applicable to their writing and practice applying them on their own. The UBERdoc responses address the most common surface issues we have seen. They are carefully worded to be understandable to students without a background in grammar/English and provide students and consultants with accurate explanations and examples. 

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