Skip to main content
Motivational Scaffolding, Politeness, and Writing Center Tutoring
The Writing Center Journal
  • Jo Mackiewicz, Iowa State University
  • Isabelle Thompson, Auburn University
Document Type
Publication Date
Writing center tutors know that improving writing skills requires sustained effort over a long period of time. They also know that motivation - the drive to actively invest in sustained effort toward a goal- is essential for writing improvement. However, a tutor may not work with the same student more than once, so tutorials often need to focus on what can be done in a single 30- to 60-minute conference. Further, although tutors are likely to attempt to motivate students to invest time and effort in improving their writing, when writers leave the writing center, tutors' influence might end with the conference. Therefore, tutors must work to develop and maintain students' motivation to participate actively during the brief time they are collaborating in writing center conferences.

This article is published as “Motivational Scaffolding, Politeness, and Writing Center Tutoring.” The Writing Center Journal 33 (2013):38–69. (First author, with Isabelle Thompson, 50%). Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner
Writing Center Journal
File Format
Citation Information
Jo Mackiewicz and Isabelle Thompson. "Motivational Scaffolding, Politeness, and Writing Center Tutoring" The Writing Center Journal Vol. 33 Iss. 1 (2015) p. 38 - 69
Available at: