Welcome to The Learning Commons: Our services

The Learning Commons welcomes all learners, teaching them to be more effective and engaged scholars.

Our services

The Learning Commons offers a variety of tutorial services:

  • Writing tutoring: appointment & drop-in writing support for both academic and creative writing, study skills, reading, time management, and test taking with professional writing tutors;
  • Student Tutoring Services (STS): course-specific support with peer tutors;
  • Quantitative (Math) tutoring: drop-in Q&A with professional math tutors;
  • Chem 911: drop-in chemistry support with peer & professional chemistry tutors;
  • Accounting tutoring: drop-in accounting support with professional accounting tutors;
  • Anatomy & Physiology tutoring: drop-in A&P support with peer tutors;
  • Spanish tutoring: drop-in Spanish support with peer tutors

In addition, we offer the following:

  • Learning Strategies classes each fall & spring;
  • A variety of class & group presentations on topics such as writing process and time management;
  • A campus reading series;
  • Two computer labs with space to study, tutor, and be tutored;
  • Books, handouts, and other valuable resources, such as semester-at-a-glance calendars and blank weekly schedules

Professional Tutors: Writing, Study Skills, Reading and Time Management

The LC is staffed by professional tutors available for appointments. These faculty/staff tutors cover quite a bit of territory. Students make appointments with these tutors through WCOnline, our appointment system. Often, students come in to work on papers, but they should not expect the tutor to correct grammar or “fix” problems. Instead, tutors help the student to do these things for themselves. For instance, if a student says she has a problem with passive verbs, or the tutor notices this, then the tutor may explain how to convert passive verbs to active ones, demonstrate this using one of the student’s sentences, then ask the student to find a passive verb and do the same. After that, the student and tutor can move on through the paper, possibly marking passive verbs, but generally focusing their attention on other issues, such as thesis development or organization.

Students often come in to talk about time management. Rather than stick to abstract principles of good time management, LC tutors work with students’ schedules, and together they try to come up with effective but realistic ways for students to successfully manage academic responsibilities without neglecting extracurricular and social activities.

Other issues these tutors commonly deal with are study skills and test taking skills, including how to read texts more effectively, how to best prepare for different kinds of exams, and how to handle timed exams.

Our goal is to make all of our materials and services accessible. Please inform staff of accessibility barriers you encounter, and request accommodations that will make activities and information resources accessible to you.

Quantitative Skills Tutoring

Quantitative Skills hours are staffed on a drop-in basis in the LC Study (Hege 210).

Students can bring in problems they’re stuck on or concepts they’re having trouble grasping and work with the tutor one-on-one or in small groups. The tutor sometimes floats between a group of students working on problems.

If the quantitative skills schedule is incompatible with a student’s schedule or a student feels he/she needs more help than the hours allow, the LC will gladly attempt to provide a student tutor through the Student Tutoring Service.  

Chemistry 911

Sometimes students have a few specific questions about labs, problem sets, or general chemical concepts, but they don’t need a long-term tutor through the Student Tutoring Service. Or, students may be signed up for a student tutor, but need some immediate help while they wait for the LC to locate a tutor. In either case, Chem911 is an excellent resource for chemistry students.

Chem911, offered by the Chemistry Department in conjunction with the LC, is staffed by faculty and students who have taken Organic Chemistry and Chemical Principles.

Students can bring questions about labs, problem sets or general chemical concepts to Chem911 and get immediate help. No appointment necessary, just drop in during Chem 911 hours. 

Student Tutoring Service

The Student Tutoring Service allows the LC to offer individual tutoring in just about any course offered at Guilford. These peer tutors are recommended by their professors, who can testify that the tutors both excelled in the class and worked well with others. Although we often have students who are eager to tutor, we always require that they be recommended by professors. Because successful tutoring requires both knowledge of the subject matter and knowledge of tutoring, tutors also attend training sessions addressing fundamental tutoring philosophies and strategies.

Students in need of tutoring contact tutors to set up a meeting. The student and tutor schedule meeting times and places themselves, allowing for a great deal of flexibility. The LC pays for eight hours of tutoring per semester, per course (although more hours can be arranged through the LC director if necessary).

Contact the LC Front Desk (316-2253) for more information.

Please note that we cannot guarantee a peer tutor for every class. While students wait for a tutor to be designated, they should seek additional assistance from the instructor and the teaching assistant for that class, if one is available.

Message to the Faculty about Peer Tutors: We cannot offer the peer tutoring service without your recommendations, so we greatly appreciate your attention to these requests. Thanks for your support!