For Undergraduates-Global Communication Center - Carnegie Mellon University

For Undergraduate Students

Make an appointment with a tutor

We work with undergraduates students on a variety of documents, including

  • Class Essays
  • PowerPoint Slides
  • Oral Presentations
  • Application Materials
  • Research Posters
  • Lab Reports
  • Team Projects
  • Grant Proposals
  • Senior Theses

Ways you can work with the GCC

  • Receive feedback on a draft.  A GCC tutor can help make sure your draft meets the assignment criteria, makes sense to an outside reader, is coherent and well-organized, and has sufficient depth and complexity. Our tutors are trained to help you with writing in the humanities (including thesis driven essays) and STEM fields (including technical papers). Upload your draft and ask your tutor to give you feedback. 
  • Develop a PowerPoint presentation.  GCC tutors can help you help create effective PowerPoint or Prezi slides.  Our tutors will talk to you about innovative research on effective PowerPoint slide design, and work with you to develop your presentation.
  • Work on job or graduate school application materials. Revising high-stakes application materials can be stressful. Our tutors can offer feedback on your personal statement, cover letter or resume to help you effectively pitch your candidacy to a potential employer or educational program.  
  • Rehearse an oral presentation.  You can use our tutors as an audience who can give you feedback on your oral presentation skills.  We have a private conference room where you can practice your presentation.  We can even videotape your presentation and review it with you.
  • Design figures, graphs, and tables.  If you are working on a technical project, how you present your data is central to explaining your research and argument.  Our tutors can offer you principles of effective data visualization and help you present your data so your main findings and conclusions are clear to readers.
  • Brainstorm.  You can come in just to talk through your ideas and work with a tutor to develop your ideas or create an outline. If you are experiencing writer's block, our tutors can help you select a topic and develop a plan for action.  We can offer strategies to help you work through class readings or rresearch 
  • Attend one of our workshops.  See our list of upcoming workshops for more information.

Wondering about what else we might support?  Just ask: gcc-cmu@andrew.cmu.edu or make an appointment with a tutor now.

Making Your Appointment

Please upload your draft 2 HOURS in advance-Uploading your draft will enable your tutor to prepare for your appointment and will ensure your appointment begins on time. (Please note: A draft is not necessary to visit the GCC if you're still in the brainstorming stage.)

Please upload your assignment prompt and a model essay (if applicable)-A well-written paper that does not meet the assignment guidelines or your instructor's expectations will not receive a satisfactory grade. If your instructor gave you an assignment prompt, be sure to upload it when you make your appointment.  We also like to see any model essays your professor may have given you as examples of a well-written paper. We will base our recommendations on this essay and show you how to use it to guide your own writing.

Our Philosophy on Grammar 

A paper can be grammatically correct and still very difficult for readers to understand.  Likewise, a paper can be logical, clear and concise even though it contains a few grammatical errors.  In fact, most readers will forgive a few grammatical errors if they can understand what the writer is trying to say.  Errors become most noticeable when a writer’s thoughts or arguments are unclear.

Our philosophy in the GCC is to first focus on making your arguments and ideas clear before we focus on errors. We believe this focus on clarity will improve your writing (and your grade!)  more than just eliminating grammatical errors. We also believe that strategies for clear writing can be taught more easily than English grammar rules, which can only be learned through repetition over long periods of time. In other words, we can be a resource for helping you gain grammatical knowledge, but our approach puts your learning as the top priority.

Workshops

The GCC offers several workshops throughout the Fall and Spring semesters. These works are open and free to all CMU students across all disciplines. For more information on our workshops, including upcoming workshops please visit the Workshops page.