Department of English

The Writing Center

WELCOME TO THE CLAFLIN UNIVERSITY WRITING CENTER! Housed in the Department of English and Foreign Languages, the Writing Center functions as a consulting service for the entire University, providing one-on-one consultations and a service for supplemental reading instruction. Our objective is to serve as a forum for the literacy concerns of students, faculty, staff, and writing professionals from both academic and nonacademic communities; to advance literacy; and to further the theoretical and practical applications of writing research and instruction. Our mission further supports the University’s mission in providing students with access to exemplary educational opportunities in its undergraduate, graduate and continuing education programs.

There are many ways to access service in the Writing Center -- by appointment, walk-in and through instructor referral.

Making an Appointment

We will serve clients on an appointment basis. It is very important to plan ahead. To make an appointment, call 803-535-5422, stop by Grace Thomas Kennedy Room 228 or email The Writing Center coordinator, Mrs. Mandakini Hiremath, will schedule an appointment with a writing consultant and ask you to fill out a form. The consultation will take place in the consultant’s office. 

You can also make Writing Center appointments ONLINE at!

All Writing Center sessions are 15 to 20 minutes long. Try to schedule your appointment in advance of the due date for your assignment so that you will have ample time to revise after the session.

After your session, you will be asked to complete a progress report. Please take a moment to fill out the report and reflect on what you covered in your session, and tell us how we might serve you better on your next visit.

Walk-in Consulting

Trained peer consultants are available for walk-in consulting between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. You will be asked to sign-in, fill out the consulting form and wait for the next available consultant.

Instructor Referral

Some students are referred to the Writing Center by their instructors, who complete a referral form and send it to the Writing Center. A Writing Center consultant will then contact the student to schedule an appointment.

Getting the Most Out of the Writing Center

Prepare for your session by doing the following:

  • If you are working on a draft, bring two copies of it -- one for you and one for the consultant.
  • If your writing concern is related to a particular assignment, bring the assignment.
  • If you want to discuss feedback you have received from a teacher, bring a copy of the comments.
  • If you have notes, previous writing, a particular text and/or research materials related to your draft, bring those items to the session.

Prior to the session, reread your draft and your assignment to determine what particular question, concern or issue you would like to take up during the session.

What You Can Expect

We’ll ask for your input at the start of every session. This gives you a chance to help set the agenda for the session.

During your session, you will be asked to talk about your writing and your goals for the assignment or project. We will prompt you to think actively, to compose new writing, and to discuss your thoughts about your paper and your writing process.

We will treat you with respect and respond fully to your concerns. At the same time, because we are just as interested in your long-term development as we are in your paper, we may ask you to try out a new strategy. Our aim is two-fold: to help you with your concerns about the paper at hand and to suggest to you something new about the craft of writing, both of which you can take with you.

What You Cannot Expect

  • Writing consultants will not “look over” or proofread your paper.
  • Writing consultants will not comment on a teacher’s grade or grading procedure.
  • Writing consultants will not overwrite or change your words.
  • Writing consultants will not guarantee a particular grade on an assignment.
  • Writing consultants will not judge the validity of a writing assignment.

If you have questions, concerns or problems related to your service in the Writing Center, feel free to contact the director, Dr. Melissa Pearson, at or 803-535-5092.

About Dr. Melissa Pearson,
the Writing Center's director

Dr. Melissa Pearson holds a PhD in rhetoric and composition with concentrations in African-American rhetoric/studies from the University of South Carolina. However, her experience with writing centers began when she was pursing her MA in writing studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Her vision has led Claflin’s Writing Center through physical and infrastructural changes. Pearson maintains that the Writing Center is a vital resource for academic success, and strives to provide necessary assistance to students, faculty and staff.