DukeWrites Interviews Writing Tutor Heidi Giusto

How long have you worked as a writing tutor at Duke?

I started working here in January 2009, although I have not worked every semester.  All total, I have conducted over 500 appointments, so I consider myself a veteran tutor.

Describe your particular approach to tutoring.

I love treating each appointment and each student uniquely.  Generally, I tend to ask a lot of questions, and I do my best to make sure that each session addresses the student’s concerns.  I don’t have a “standard” tutoring tactic other than asking questions and encouraging writers to read their work aloud because I believe that most writers (including myself) find the exercise useful.

What do you think are the most useful resources at the Writing Studio?

I agree with Beth Long’s statement (https://dukewrites.wordpress.com/2010/04/09/dukewrites-interviews-writing-tutor-beth-long/) that the tutors are the most useful resources!  The Writing Studio prepares its tutors to work with all different students, from first-year students to international graduate students, and has equipped us with countless resources through the Writing Studio website (http://twp.duke.edu/writing-studio).  When I first started at the Writing Studio, I was a little overwhelmed with all the resources on the website, but now I feel like I know the website and our resources well.  I believe that my experience has enabled me to steer students in the right direction with the aid of our online resources.

Tell me about your work as co-editor of Deliberations: A Journal of First-Year Writing at Duke University.

Deliberations publishes some of the best writing of first-year students.  As co-editor, I have enjoyed working with students in the capacity of editor, and learning about the publication process.  I particularly enjoy getting to work with students throughout the revision process.  In contrast to most tutoring sessions in which I don’t get to read a writer’s final product, my work with Deliberations allows me to see a student’s project through to its completion.

What do you do when you’re not tutoring?

I have too many hobbies!  I enjoy gardening, cooking, baking, doing home canning, reading, hiking, boating, traveling, and spending time with my family.  I am also a Ph.D. Candidate in the Duke History department, and am in the final stages of writing my dissertation.

Where and when can writers find you this semester?

I work in Lilly library on Monday and Thursday evenings (7pm-10pm), and in Art building on Wednesdays (10am-4pm).


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