What Should Tutors Focus On?

When reading a paper for the first time, it’s often difficult to know what to focus on. Should you highlight a student’s grammatical issues, or should you help the student examine the paper’s organization? What do you do first? What if you don’t have enough time?

In case you are new to tutoring or want to brush up on your skills when looking at student work, here are the actual notes from a peer tutor training session from the O’Bryant 826 Writers’ Room.


  1. PROMPT- Does the paper answer the prompt?
  2. LOGIC- Does the paper make sense?
  3. ORGANIZATION- Why are the paragraphs in this order?
  4. PARAGRAPHS- Do the sentences within the paragraphs make sense?
  5. SENTENCES- Grammar, punctuation, etc.
  6. FORMATTING- MLA, APA, margins, etc.

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