The Online Tutor as
Cross-Curricular Double Agent

OWL Report 1996

Spring 1996

Jim Swanson and Tim McGee served as the OWL coordinators in the fall of 1996. They trained five new tutors, visited 15 classes to explain and encourage use of the online writing services, and hosted a reunion of the former mini-grant recipients to encourage their continued participation and support. The scope of the OWL was enlarged to include requests throughout the nation and world.

Tim McGee and Patricia Ericsson presented research based on evaluation of OWL tutors at the Computers and Writing Conference at Utah State University. Proposals were sent to the Collaboration Conference and the Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC) to present panel discussions of effective tutoring strategies.

OWL requests continued at a steady level. Student satisfaction with the OWL was rated as good to excellent. Documents supporting faculty satisfaction with the OWL are included with this report.

A meeting with Dr. Tunheim (DSU President) and Dr. Cook (DSU VP for Academic Affairs) was successful in convincing the administration of the value of the OWL and that DSU should assume support of the OWL when Bush funding ended. Additionally, ENGL 385 was approved by the administration for the following year. This course is designed to train qualified students for online tutoring.

Fall 1996

Jim Swanson and Patricia Ericsson directed the OWL. They trained three new tutors and visited seven classes to explain and encourage the use of the online writing services. Proposals for the Collaboration Conference and the CCCC were accepted and plans were made to present at the Collaboration Conference. The same presentation was given on campus at a Bush Pedagogy Luncheon. Five tutors explained their tutoring training and experiences.

Meetings were held and plans were made with the Distance Education staff to make the OWL an integral part of DSU's burgeoning distant education programs. The OWL has become an official student service offered to distant education students.

Submitted by Jim Swanson and Patricia Ericsson