Frequently Asked Questions

The Academic Resource Center is where you’ll find:

  • a free service to support and assist you with your coursework
  • peer tutors who can offer feedback on your writing
  • peer tutors who can help you improve your study skills
  • strategies for balancing your academic and social life
  • ideas for managing your time and reducing stress
  • assistance for students with learning disabilities
  • assistance for international students
  • books and resources on many aspects of college life

Do I need to make an appointment to meet with an ARC tutor?

Although walk-ins are welcome, we encourage you to make an appointment, especially if it’s a busy part of the semester, such as the last couple of weeks of classes. We also encourage you to come in at least 24 hours before the paper is due, so you’ll have plenty of time to make revisions after your session. To sign up for an appointment, go to

How can the ARC help me with a paper?

ARC tutors can help you with every aspect of writing a paper, from brainstorming to polishing the final draft. Specifically, we can help you:

  • analyze assignment directions
  • brainstorm ideas
  • craft a thesis statement
  • organize your ideas
  • revise your draft
  • use correct punctuation and grammar
  • incorporate sources into your writing
  • proofread your work

What can't the ARC help me with?

We can’t guarantee you will get an A on a paper, and we can’t tell you what your professor will think about a paper. We can’t write or rewrite your paper for you, and we can’t correct all of your problems in 30 minutes. We are here to help you become a more effective writer, not to do your work for you. Tutors are trained to facilitate your learning. It’s up to you to make it happen.

Can I drop off my paper and pick it up later?

No. We ask that you stay and work with a tutor so your meeting will be a learning process.

Will the ARC proofread my paper?

No. However, we will read through your paper with you, helping you identify mechanical errors and showing you how to correct them. That way, you will learn to find and correct those mistakes for yourself in the future.

I'm an international student and English is not my native language. Can the ARC help me?

ARC tutors can help you identify grammatical and language problems in your papers and other assignments. As an international student, you are encouraged to take full advantage of the ARC’s resources as you adjust to college life in the United States.

I have a learning disability. Can the ARC help me?

ARC tutors can help you with time management, study skills and test-taking tips, and we can help you identify computer software that might address your needs. We also can connect you with Learning Ally, an organization that provides support for students with learning disabilities.

How do I get a subject tutor?

Call the ARC at 434-381-6278 to find out the name of a tutor in the department or check out the list of subject tutors on our website. Then, you can contact a tutor to set up a time to meet.

How do I cite sources from the Internet?

Check out these links to the Online Writing Lab at Purdue University, a useful resource for anything related to academic writing:

How can I become an ARC tutor?

The ARC hires new tutors each spring for the next academic year. If you are a strong writer and have a desire to help your peers make the most of their academic experience, we encourage you to consider applying. Watch for announcements or call the Academic Resource Center coordinator in the spring (early to mid-March) to find out how to submit your application.

Requirements for tutors include, but are not limited to, a minimum GPA of 3.0, a graded writing sample from a Sweet Briar class and two recommendations from professors. Hired tutors must enroll in the one-credit English practicum, “Theory and Practice of Peer Tutoring,” which meets in the fall semester. Tutors also are expected to participate in ongoing monthly training meetings and in programs that help promote the ARC.

  • Location & Contact Info

    Sweet Briar College
    Mary Helen Cochran Library
    Second Floor

    P | 434-381-6278