ARC: Technical Writing Assistant (S9595X)

Summary, Scope, and Responsibilities


Summary of Position

The Academic Resource Commons (ARC), a college-wide collaboration among faculty, staff, and students, is an initiative that supports every learner at Bates in achieving their academic goals. ARC offers high-quality, student-focused peer tutoring and other support services in a welcoming, inclusive environment. Student-focused services support every student as a unique learner and empower students as academic leaders. The ARC is a vital part of the academic experience at Bates College, complementing the classroom experience with a deeply social, collaborative, interactive learning environment that engages learners of every background in a conversation over shared challenges and student success.

Technical Writing Assistants (TWAs)

In collaboration with the Director of the Academic Resource Commons, members of the Writing at Bates team, and the Biology faculty, Technical Writing Assistants implement the core mission of the Academic Resource Commons, working with Bates’s students towards academic success.

More specifically, Technical Writing Assistants (TWAs) are Bates sophomores, juniors, and seniors who work as leaders within the Academic Resource Commons, engaging their peers over the work of being a student. TWAs are effective and empathetic communicators who have insight to share on how to succeed within a particular area of the Bates curriculum, namely, writing in the Natural Sciences. TWAs support student writers in Biology by designing and facilitating weekly out-of-class sessions that address approaches to writing assignments and assist students with their writing process. TWAs may also be attached to the course they are supporting by also being hired as a Teaching Assistant for lab. TWAs attend weekly trainings with the Assistant Director of Writing in the Natural Sciences on topics including: fundamentals of scientific writing; techniques in peer facilitation; and best practices in writing pedagogy. TWAs meet with course instructors on a regular basis throughout the semester. PWSAs are also provided support: They attend training at the beginning of each semester to learn about theories of writing and oral communication and best practices in tutoring others. They also attend weekly staff development workshops with other TWAs and ARC Peer Educators throughout the semester and are closely mentored by the ARC staff.

Effective communication skills, leadership ability, and investment in the Bates curriculum are essential attributes. Students who excel as peer educators have worked hard in their own studies and thought carefully about their own study habits. They have a solid understanding of the material they tutor, but also empathy for the student who may be struggling with the material.

Your application should contain the following documents:
Cover letter explaining your related experience and interest in this position. Please also include the following information:
Class Year
Can you attend a full-day training before the first week of class?
Can you attend a weekly training?
A 5-to-10-page sample of your academic writing

The Basics

Department: Academic Resource Commons
Supervisor: Daniel Sanford
Office Location: Coram Library, Room 228
Pay Grade: X

Qualifications, Requirements, and Responsibilities


Strong academic standing at Bates received an A or B in any course they wish to support (or equivalent) Strong organization, time management, and communication skills a friendly willingness to support, mentor, and foster trusting relationships with other Bates students sensitivity to and flexibility in regards to Bates students’ diverse learning styles and preferences openness to feedback from students, the course faculty, and the ARC team a desire to learn more about effective peer-tutoring, particularly in regards to writing in the Natural Sciences ability to attend required trainings and ARC meetings and to be present for all scheduled time within ARC Able to procure a recommendation from a member of the faculty, as part of the interview process, who teaches in the course you will be supporting Your application should contain the following documents: • Resume • Transcript • Cover letter explaining your interest in this position, and including the following information: o Class Year o GPA o Can you attend training the first week of class? o Can you attend a weekly training? • A 5-to-10-page sample of their academic writing.


Reports to the Director of ARC and Assistant Directors of ARC as appropriate. Works closely with ARC Student Managers and fellow Technical Writing Assistants.


Support students in designated writing intensive, Natural Sciences courses, engaging particularly over written assignments. Make oneself available to students during particular hours that you pre-establish for one-on-one tutoring and group sessions, particularly before key due dates for writing and speaking assignment. Communicate respectfully and regularly with the course professor; meet with the course professor several times throughout the semester to clarify assignment expectations, establish ideal tutoring hours, discuss the class’s progress, and identify opportunities for you to interact with and support the class as a whole Actively develop and refine your tutoring skills and a Peer Educator Philosophy through scheduled trainings, meetings and workshops, and on your own. Integrate feedback from the course professor, tutees, and the ARC team in an effort to improve your writing and speaking support skills.