Where is Academic Support?

Academic Support is located in the Mack Gipson, Jr., building, across the driveway from Haygood-Holsey. It is a one-story building on the other side of the fence. You will see our sign on the building and a bench next to our entrance door. Parking is limited, so we advise walking over.

In what subject areas can I get tutoring?

It is the goal of Academic Support to provide tutoring in any course taught on campus. We also work with students on research paper skills, study skills, and computer skills. Academic Support tutors may also be able to provide help with résumés, applications, letters, and just about any other task that students need to address. In short, we try to meet the needs of all Paine students who walk through our doors.

When is the Center open?

The Center is open for normal service during all academic terms. Fall and Spring Semester hours are Monday through Thursday from 8:30 AM to 8:00 PM and Friday from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM. Summer hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM. Tutoring is available during Fall Semester, Spring Semester, and Summer Session. Limited services may be available at other times of the year; students who might need assistance when classes are not in session should call the Center to see if arrangements can be made.

Does it cost anything to see a tutor?

No. All services provided by Academic Support, including tutoring, are provided free of charge to all Paine College students, faculty, staff, and administrators.

Who is eligible for tutoring?

Any student enrolled in classes at Paine College is eligible for our services, as are members of Paine’s faculty, staff, and administration. The staff of the ACES Academic Support regrets that we are not able to fill requests for tutoring from people from the community at large.

How do I sign up for tutoring?

Students can sign up in person, over the phone and make requests online. Students can come to Academic Support, located in the Gipson building across the driveway from Haygood-Holsey Hall, to sign up for tutoring. Students may also call (706) 821-8345 or make a request online at http://www.paine.edu/docs/webform.aspx?id=337784 and then await a phone call or email to confirm. A member of our staff will talk to the students about their needs, review their class schedules to locate openings, and set up convenient appointments. The whole process usually takes about five minutes. Students may request tutoring in one or more subjects as often as needed. Students have the best chance of getting the appointment times that they desire if they come to sign up at the start of the semester. We can set up appointments at any time, but as the semester goes on our time slots may get filled, leaving fewer options for new appointments.

How often can I come for tutoring?

Students may sign up to be tutored for the entire semester, for one session only, or for drop-in sessions as needed. Most students find that coming for tutoring for one hour twice a week provides the best results. However, tutoring schedules are designed to meet the needs of the individual student.

I have a tight schedule. Can Academic Support help me?

Academic Support works very hard to meet each student’s needs. We have flexible scheduling which ensures that students who do not have much time can still get help. Sessions usually start on the hour and last for an hour, but other arrangements may be possible. Students have the best chance of getting appointments for specific times if they sign up earlier in the semester, before our tutoring slots get filled up.

Can I get tutoring without signing up for the whole semester?

Yes. Sometimes students need help with a single assignment, not an entire course. ACES Academic Support can set up drop-in sessions for students in that situation, or can set up a series of drop-in appointments if a little more time is needed. The benefit of signing up for the entire semester is that the student will be working with the same tutor for the entire semester. Drop-in students may not always be able to meet with the same tutor each time.

Do I have to keep coming for tutoring all semester even if I feel I don’t need help anymore?

If students refer themselves for tutoring, they may cancel their scheduled sessions at any time. They can even stop coming altogether. We would appreciate having prior notice if a student wants to cancel all remaining sessions, however, so that we may make arrangements to give another student that time slot. Students who have been referred for tutoring by their instructors, advisors, or administrators are strongly encouraged to continue with tutoring throughout the semester.

How are the tutoring sessions conducted? Will I be tutored in a large room with a lot of other students?

Most of our tutoring sessions are conducted one-on-one: one tutor working with only one student. Our building was purposely designed to allow for private tutoring sessions. The tutors meet with their students in separate tutoring rooms that are well-lit and outfitted specifically for tutoring. Among other resources, each tutoring room has a whiteboard to enhance the exchange of information between tutor and student. Although we can accommodate small groups of students who request being tutored at the same time, we prefer to help each student individually in order to best meet the student’s needs.

What do I have to bring when I come into Academic Support for tutoring or for any other purpose?

Each student must bring his or her valid Paine College student ID card so that he or she can sign in. Our sign-in computer requires each student to swipe the ID card in order to sign in to get tutored, to use the computers, to use the AV equipment – in short, to receive any ACES Academic Support services. Students should also bring all of the supplies they need in order to accomplish their task – that includes textbooks, paper, pens and pencils, calculators, and whatever else they may need in order to do the work they want to accomplish in Academic Support. In addition, students should bring the following:
  • An open mind and a positive attitude.
  • A copy of the assignment. If the teacher did not type up the assignment, then bring the class notes taken when the teacher gave the assignment in class.
  • Any drafts, notes, reading materials, textbooks, and handouts that relate to the assignment.
  • A list of questions about the assignment.
  • All attempts made to begin the assignment.
  • A flash drive to save the work if the computer is used during the tutoring session.

When students go to Academic Support for tutoring, what does Academic Support expect of them?

Academic Support wants to help all students become successful students, and we know that success begins with being prepared. Our tutors want to help students reach their goals, but students have to help themselves, as well. Therefore, we want students to come to tutoring prepared to work. Before and between tutoring sessions, students should attend class and take good notes, read the assigned section(s) of the textbook before trying the homework, try all of the homework problems/questions and write down any questions or problems that they want to discuss with the tutor, complete all assignments on time and be able to explain them, develop and follow a study schedule, and attempt to use the tutor’s suggestions for improving work and study habits. Students should be prepared to actively participate in each session. They should feel free to tell the tutor if they still do not understand a concept or procedure even after an explanation. Students should also be comfortable enough to tell their tutors that the tutors are moving too quickly or to request more clarification or a different type of explanation.

Will my instructor know that I am being tutored?

Academic Support maintains the confidentiality of its students and will not discuss a student’s situation with an instructor without that student’s permission. The only exception to this policy is in the case of a student who has been referred by an instructor, advisor, or administrator. In that case, the Director must provide reports about the student’s participation in tutoring to the referral source on a regular basis.

Can I get help in more than one course each semester?

Certainly! Many students receive tutoring in two or more subject areas each semester. There is no limit, as long as we have tutors who can handle those requests at times when the students want to come in.

Why am I getting C’s and D’s in college when I used to get A’s and B’s in high school?

Students often find that they need to improve their study skills when they get to college. Academic Support tutors can help students analyze their study skills and suggest ways to improve them. Many students have benefited from this help over the years.

Can I get help with study skills?

Yes. Academic Support helps students with time management plans, study strategies, and test-taking skills. We also have many handouts and booklets on those topics which we provide free of charge. Additionally, we have a number of videos that may help students improve a variety of study skills.

If I am in Student Support Services (SSS), can I also come to the Dr. Mack Gipson, Jr., Tutorial and Enrichment Center for tutoring?

Absolutely! All Paine College students are welcome in Academic Support. Individuals in Student Support Services can come for tutoring in Academic Support as long as they also attend their required SSS tutoring sessions.

Can I get help with a research paper? I’ve never written one before.

Yes. Many students come to Academic Support each semester just for help with research papers. Our staff can show you the steps in writing a research paper, all the way from choosing your topic to gathering/evaluating sources to formatting your final draft. We can also give you handouts we have developed which explain the research paper process and provide specific examples. We can help students with all of the research style formats they may need to use. (The MLA, APA, and Chicago/Turabian styles are used most frequently here at Paine.) Students should bring all sources, notes, and drafts when they come for help with their research papers so that questions may be answered as they arise. They should also bring a flash drive so they can save any work that is done on the computer during these tutoring sessions.

Can someone help me edit my essays and research papers?

Yes, we can help students edit their papers, but the emphasis is on the words “help students edit.” Students may make appointments to see one of the tutors who are designated to help with editing. The students must attend the tutoring session and participate in the editing process with the tutor. We do not edit papers that are dropped off to us – the student must be present so that clarification of ideas can be discussed and so that the student learns some editing skills that he/she can use when writing the next paper. It is common for editing to take more than one session if a paper is more than just a few paragraphs long; students may make as many sessions as needed until the entire paper has been reviewed.

Can Academic Support tutors help me format my assignment on the computer?

Certainly! Students should bring in their assignment on a flash drive (preferred) so they can format their paper as the tutor shows them how to add headers and footers, adjust margins, develop a title page, create hanging indents for citations and references, or apply any other formatting the assignment may require. ACES Academic Support tutors can also help students learn how to use special features such as MSWord Tables or Drawing tools that may be useful in preparing the paper.

Can you help me with basic computer skills?

Absolutely! Many students come to ACES Academic Support to learn about e-mail; improve their Internet skills; learn how to use particular software such as PowerPoint, Excel, or Publisher; or learn more advanced skills for the software they are familiar with. We can also help students improve their word processing skills by showing them more efficient ways to accomplish an action. If students want to learn how to do something with the computer, they can ask if a ACES Academic Support tutor can help them. We may not know all of the answers for all of software packages, but we can usually help students complete their assignments and improve their skills in the process.

Can you give me suggestions about how to find Internet sources for my paper?

Yes. Students often come to Academic Support for just this reason. Our tutors can show students effective search techniques using a range of search tools including the Internet, Galileo, JSTOR, and a variety of print resources.

I’ve always had trouble with math. Can you help me?

Although the Mathematics Support Center is the primary site for tutoring in math, Academic Support is able to tutor students in math when the Math Support Center is closed. This means that Academic Support can tutor in math Monday – Thursday from 5 PM to 8 PM and Friday from 4 PM to 5 PM. Our tutors will work with the students to determine their strengths and weaknesses, fill in gaps in their knowledge, and clarify concepts. The tutors can also help students learn how to study math. We can do that only with the students’ help, however: Don’t forget that the student must go to each class session, take good notes, read the appropriate chapter, try the homework before coming to tutoring, and be prepared with questions for the tutor so that each tutoring session makes the most of the available time. The tutors will not do homework for students, but we will be glad to help them work through many similar problems until the students feel confident that they can succeed.

Can you help me edit the essay I wrote for my graduate school application?

Yes. We help students brainstorm for and edit essays written for many purposes. However, we are not an editing service, so students must make appointments to get help with editing. We will not read a paper that is left off for us – the student must be with us when we look at any papers, letters, applications, etc., that he/she wants help with. We can also help students prepare résumés, write business letters, prepare or practice for presentations, and many other tasks. Students should feel free to ask us if we can help – we usually can!

Can you help me edit the essay I wrote for my graduate school application?

Yes. We help students brainstorm for and edit essays written for many purposes. However, we are not an editing service, so students must make appointments to get help with editing. We will not read a paper that is left off for us – the student must be with us when we look at any papers, letters, applications, etc., that he/she wants help with. We can also help students prepare résumés, write business letters, prepare or practice for presentations, and many other tasks. Students should feel free to ask us if we can help – we usually can!

I have to make an oral presentation in one of my classes. Can you help me?

Certainly! Whether you will deliver your presentation by yourself or as part of a group, Academic Support can give you tips on writing and delivering your presentation, developing and using visual aids effectively, and fielding questions from the audience. We can also help you develop effective PowerPoint presentations with hands-on lessons at the computer.

I know Academic Support has Internet-accessible computers. What other tools can students use in the Center?

Many students come to the Mack Gipson Building to use our electric typewriter, pencil sharpener, and three-hole punch. We also have calculators, a TV/VCR, cassette players, paper cutter, and staplers that students may use. All of these items must be used in the Center only – students may not take them out of the building.