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Writing at the Success Center



Hello! Welcome to the Success Center’s Online Writing Lab (OWL). The writing tutors are here to help you with your papers. This means that we will point out areas that need changes in order to meet the standards required for good writing. This does not mean that the tutors will point out every error in your paper, or correct them for you. We will provide explanations and examples of how to fix errors or content problems. The tutors are trained to look at only two areas per review: one higher order concern and one lower order concern. This keeps the review process quick, and your revisions will be easier if they are completed in stages. It is also important to keep in mind that once you receive a response from us, complete the suggested revisions before you re-submit your essay. You may re-submit your essay multiple times.

Choose one item from each column:

Higher Order Concerns                                                         Lower Order Concerns

Thesis                                                                                      Punctuation

Organization                                                                            Word Choice

Development                                                                           Subject-Verb Agreement

Support                                                                                   Run-on / Fragmented Sentences


If any of these terms are confusing to you, don’t hesitate to ask us to explain. Also, there are times when you think something is wrong with an essay, but you don’t really know what it is. Don’t worry. We’ll help you prioritize.

Sometimes writers have a difficult time starting an essay. We can help with that process, too. Just give us a call. Any time you want to come in for a face-to-face conference, call us for an appointment so we can be sure to have time available for you. We can also visit with you via email and telephone.


Here is what you need to do when submitting papers to the Online Writing Lab:

1.      Call 552-3350 when you submit your paper to let the staff know there is a paper that needs to be reviewed. This will ensure that the staff will see your paper.

2.      Submit your paper as an attachment to an email to OWL@UTPB.EDU

                          Send your essay as a .doc or .rtf file. 

3.      Include the following information in the body of the email when you submit a paper to the online lab:

·         Your name

·         Your Student ID (a 9 digit number that usually begins with 900)

·         Class and Section Number (for the assignment to be reviewed)

·         Instructor name

·         What style the paper is to be written in (APA, MLA, Turabian, etc.)

·         Any instructions/prompts from the Instructor

·         What you want the tutor to focus on

Here is an example of the information to include when submitting the essay:

           Ima Student


           Engl 3975.002

           Dr. Teaches

           MLA format

           I’m writing an analysis of a poem. It’s supposed to be 5 pages long.

Please focus on organization, and I’m not sure I use commas correctly.

4.      Please allow 48 hours for paper response/return. Keep in mind that the tutors get pretty busy, so do not hesitate to call 552-3350 if you have not received a response from us after 48 hours.

Keep a copy of this handout saved on a flash drive or print a hard copy so you can refer to it as needed.

We’re here to serve you and help make your academic experience a successful one.