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ASC Webinar Transcripts

Welcome to the Academic Skills Center - July 2017 (07.11.2017)

Presented Tuesday July 11, 2017

View the recording

Last updated 1/30/2018


Visual: Welcome Slide says “Welcome to the Academic Skills Center: The Skills you Need to Succeed!”

Visual: Slide changes to present photos of presenters.

Audio: Shawn: Thank you, everyone, for joining us. It looks like we're getting the numbers up here, so I wanted to make sure we were ready. So, without further ado, let's begin. The gentleman you see on the left is currently the gentleman you hear speaking. My name is Shawn Picht, I'm the manager of faculty outreach and student communication. This is the second time we're presenting this webinar, Welcome to the Academic Skills Center.

And we have with us as a co-presenter, Emily Dahlen, who is the associate director of the Academic Skills Center, one of the associate directors, and the CAEX program director. She'll be speaking to us a little bit later and presenting on the CAEX, which is our Walden Center for Student Success courses and workshops.

Visual: Slide changes to Objective and Overview

  • What is the Academic Skills Center (ASC)?
  • What are the Academic Skills Center (ASC) services?
  • How can you interact with the ASC?
  • Who to contact at the ASC?

So, why are all of you here? Why do you want to know about the Academic Skills Center? Well, we're going to give you as much information that is practical and as helpful to you as possible in this half-hour stint. So the questions we're going to be looking at, where is the Academic Skills Center? How is it situated within Walden? How do you find it? Things like that. What are the Academic Skills Center services? So what support do we offer for Walden University students? How can you interact with the ASC?

So there are many different ways to interact with us when we are not available via e-mail and different things. Such as a newsletter and stuff like that, and I will get to that. Finally, who to contact? Now this is really important because there are numerous e-mails to contact us and you want to make sure you get the right one and it's really important to leave here with the ability to say, you know what, I have a question about, A, B, or C, who do I contact and this information will be provided at the end. So let's get started.

Visual: Slide changes to “Where is the ASC located” and shows a chart that include the branches of the Center for Student Success, including the Academic Skills Center, Career Services, Library, and Writing Center. 

Where is the Academic Skills Center situated? So, our offices are in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota. And we are located within the Center for Student Success, which also houses the Library and the Writing Center. So, the Academic Skills Center is situated within those three. We report to the same people that the Library and the Writing Center report to, the executive director in the Center for Student Success. And, so, we are housed within that center. Within the Academic Skills Center we have two different ways that we are split up.

Visual: Slide changes to “ASC Breakdown”

Audio: Shawn: And I should have changed this, but it's tutoring services and CAEX courses and workshops. And we like to think of these as the two shops of the ASC. Now, when you think about the Library, or the Writing Center, the Writing Center serves one function, it is for writing. So, the be all and end all of writing is at the Writing Center.

So the ASC does not have one specific core function, its other functions are tutoring services and CAEX courses and workshops, which we'll get to in a minute. And I also wrote international there. And the reason I quote that is because the majority of CSS is located in the Minneapolis offices.

However, the ASC, the Academic Skills Center, is spread out all over the world. We have tutors who are -- we have a tutor located in Doha, Qatar, we have faculty located in South Africa, we have faculty located in New York, we have faculty in California, we have tutors in Texas, we have people all over the globe, all over the United States, and we think this is a very unique feature of the Academic Skills Center, one that we're very proud of. So I wanted to make sure that I mentioned that as well.

Visual: Slide changes to “Academic Skills Center Services” title slide.

Audio: Shawn: So, next I am -- I think we are all privileged to be able to have Emily Dahlen here, who is the program director for Walden Center for Student Success courses and workshops. So we're going to go over both of those. And, first, she is going to discuss how the courses and workshops can help you and what they are all about and how they help you build skills for Walden and beyond.

Visual: Slide changes to “CAEX Courses & Workshop Info” including photo of program director.

Audio: Shawn: So, Emily, I'm going to turn it over to you.

Audio: Emily: Thank you, Shawn. So, as Shawn mentioned earlier, CAEX stands for Walden Center for Student Success. Not Writing Center, not anything like that. It's the Walden Center for Student Success. So that means that slide that Shawn showed earlier with all the different centers that are in the Center for Student Success, they all can have courses that relate to CAEX topics.

So, for example, we do have a lot of writing courses, but we also just launched a statistics seminar that helps students who need work on SPSS. It's at the doctoral level, but that's just one example of how CAEX incorporates other centers, not just the Writing Center.

So, again, we have a stat seminar, we're going to add an information literacy course next year, which comes out of the Library, we'll also add a success strategies class that also comes out of the Academic Skills Center. So, we offer a wide variety of support courses, and all of our courses are designed to help you as a Walden student be successful here at Walden.

We currently offer seven different courses with a wide range of topics. We have an APA course so, if you need support or you've been out of school for a while or just maybe are coming from a program that used MLA or a different style, we have an APA, a basic APA course that you can take to get a refresher. It's only four weeks long.

We also have some graduate writing courses that can help you get your skills -- increase your skills in writing. They're very small courses. We cap it ten students a section so that you can have a very close relationship not only with the other students in your course but with your faculty member.

We also have a critical thinking course. We have a course in writing a literature review. We have a course on reading strategies. So, again, we have quite a few different courses. And, again, we're adding a success strategies course and information literacy course.

For you doctoral students, we also have six workshops. One workshop is focused on writing your preproposal document, so that's your premise or your prospectus. We have four workshops that focus on the proposal. And these are all for students who have a draft of their proposal written already. So, if you have a draft of your proposal, but you want to polish it up or you need some help with the writing aspects, not the content, but the writing, you could take one of our proposal workshops.

And we also have a workshop on post-proposal section, so once you've passed your proposal, or once you have an approved proposal, you need some help with the later sections, like your conclusion section, you could take our post-proposal workshop section.

As I mentioned earlier, we also have a seminar on SPSS. It's a skills seminar, which goes through different skills, how to use SPSS in the most effective way. So, if you, again, are a little worried about that going into the research sequence, that seminar might be a nice option for you doctoral students.

We have over 40 faculty. Some of our faculty work full time in the Writing Center as instructors or editors. And we also recently just revised a lot of our courses and we're in the process of revising some of our courses. To make them better for you.

We're generally making the sections smaller, making the courses a little bit lighter in terms of work load so that they can overlay the rest of your course load and not be too burdensome but also give you the skills that you need. Shawn has also done a great job creating some course preview videos that often feature interviews with faculty members or course creators. So we have these four, the APA course, our workshops, and I think it's graduate writing 1, right, Shawn?

Audio: Shawn: Yes.

Audio: Emily: Great, thank you. And, let's see.

Visual: Slide changes to “Just give me the facts!”

CAEX Courses-

  • $195
  • 4-12 weeks long
  • Available on quarter and semester schedules
  • 1-3 credits (depending on course)
  • Contact Academic Advisor to register.


Audio: Emily: All of our courses -- actually, you see a little video up here in the corner of one of the course preview videos that Shawn did with Hillary Wentworth. Who oversees our graduate writing courses now. And she was the course designer for our basic APA style course. For a long time she worked in the Writing Center as a writing instructor.

So all of our courses are $195. They are anywhere from four to 16 weeks long, depending on the course and depending on whether you're taking it on the quarter or semester schedule. All of our courses are available for both quarter and semester students. They range, actually, from 0 to 4.5 credits, depending on the course. And in order to register, you just need to contact your academic advisor. So you just e-mail

Visual: Slide changes to “Range of Courses”

·       CAEX 6200/6201- Basic APA Style: Citations and References

·       CAEX 6050/6051- Graduate Writing I: Basic Composition Skills

·       CAEX 6060/6061- Graduate Writing II: Intermediate Compostion Skills

·       CAEX 8350/8351- Writing a Literature Review

·       And many more ASC Courses Website ( 

Audio: Emily: As I mentioned, we have a range of courses. You can check out our website here, to get more information on all of them, on our web pages, sometimes we have videos, sometimes we have -- we always have descriptions and we always have a list of the best students to take those courses.

And as Shawn mentioned on the slide, we are preparing for revision of the writing a lit review course this year.

Visual: Slide changes to “CAEX Doctoral Writing Workshops” 

Audio: Emily: As I mentioned, we have six different writing workshops. We have preproposal, which focuses on writing a document. That's the difference with the preproposal workshops, all of the rest of these workshops focus on revision. So you won't actually be writing anything in these workshops, you'll be revising the document that you already have. So we have preproposal, proposal, introduction, literature review, methods section and then postproposal.

Visual: Slide changes to “Doctoral Writing Facts” including-

  • $195
  • 6 weeks long
  • Weeks 1 & 6 are assessment/reflection
  • Weeks 2-5 are revision
  • 0 credit
  • 10 students
  • Requires 2-3 page writing excerpt
  • Contact Academic Advisor to register

Audio: Emily: Workshops are also $195. They're each six weeks long. Other than the preproposal workshop, which, again, is a little bit of a different animal, in all of the other workshops, weeks 1 and 6 are assessment and reflection, so self-assessment, so you think about where you need to -- what you need to work on in your writing, and then after the workshop is done, you think about how you need to move forward. And weeks 2 through 5 are focused on revision. So you submit a three to five-page segment of your draft for each of weeks 2 through 5 to your instructor. Your instructor gives you feedback. You then read that feedback and apply it to the rest of your draft and then the next week you submit another three to five-page section of your draft. The instructor gives you feedback. And this way you get to move forward with your writing and you get to -- your instructor gets to see how you're progressing and gets to give you feedback on more than just a few different things that they see in your writing.

All of our workshops are 0 credits. They're capped at ten students. And when you register, you need to submit a two to three-page excerpt of your draft -- of the appropriate document of your draft to your academic advisor. Again, this doesn't apply to the preproposal, since that focuses on writing, but it applies to all of the rest of our workshops. And then you would just contact your academic advisor and send along that two to three-page excerpt to get registered.

Visual: Slide changes to “Some more factual facts”

Audio: Emily: Factual facts, that's very nice, I like that. In our most recent survey from the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment, OIRA, we found out that more students -- when students enroll in one of our proposal writing workshops, they're much more likely to receive approval for their proposal than folks who do not. 71% received approval compared to 27% who did not. So these have been shown to be effective in having -- in getting student's proposal approved. Shawn, I will turn it back over to you. Unless there are any questions. I'll watch the chat.

Visual: Slide changes to “Tutoring Services” title slide.

Audio: Shawn: Thank you, Emily, for presenting that information. So, I am going to discuss tutoring services, which is no longer referred to as tutoring services, I should have erased that, it's just tutoring. And we're going to talk about the different ways that Academic Skills supports you with one-on-one tutoring and group tutoring as well.

So, without further ado, now, there's a lot of information in these next slides so, please ask any questions you have. It looks like we also have Kim Palermo Kielb on the line as well who might be able to answer some questions in the chat. Sorry to call you out there, Kim. She is the coordinator of -- I'm sorry -- of the tutoring services, so I apologize if I got your title wrong, but she's in the chat as well.

Visual: Slide changes to “1-on-1 Tutoring Services” breakdown.

Audio: Shawn: So, one-on-one tutoring services, we offer tutoring in statistics, SPSS Software, Excel, PowerPoint, Word, accounting and finance, Nvivo software support, which is new, and biostatistics, that's a lot of stuff. So this is something that we try to commercial as much as possible and make sure that students are aware that this is something that is available to them. A lot of this is at the course level right now. So these are statistics and SPSS software help at the course level for now, and Nvivo is a new thing that we're offering for software support. So this is all, like Emily said, with the statistics seminar that's being offered, a lot of what we're doing here is trying to help students best utilize SPSS -- SPSS for their -- for their course-related work as well.

Visual: Slide changes to “Some 1-on-1 facts”

Audio: Shawn: So, the tutoring sessions are 60 minutes long. They are on a first-come, first-served basis. We do offer same-day appointments, depending on the availability. There's a 24-hour schedule. And they're up to two sessions per week. Again, we have tutors who are all over the world. So, our scheduling system isn't just 9:00 to 5:00, it isn't just 8:00 to 4:00, it can be at 6:00 at night central time, it can be at 9:00 in the morning, central time, depending on that person's availability. And, again, the schedule is out, so, a couple weeks, so you can schedule two sessions per week.

That is the top limits station that we allow and you can click on any blue link you see. And that will take you to the tutoring page or any other page. I need to send that out again as a reminder. Any time you see something in the PowerPoint presentation that has a blue link or if you see a photo, you should be able to click on that and it will send you to the page that is listed for the underlying hyperlink as well.

Visual: Slide changes to “Group Drop-in Sessions”

Audio: Shawn: We also offer, we've been doing this for quite a while, I don't want to say "we," and the Academic Skills Center and Dr. Sarah Inkpen have offered 60-minute group drop-in, they've been met with so much success that we do two now, they're offered on Saturdays at 10:00 a.m. eastern time and Sundays at 2:00 p.m. eastern time and you need to contact the Academic Skills Center to get the link to join them. What they are, they're a session that is an hour long, and you can drop in at 10:15, 10:20, 10:05 or not come until the end. You can come there and have your statistics level questions answered.

So, if you have questions that are gnawing at you over the weekend that you've been working on that you really want to figure out or if you just want to come there and watch someone else have their question answered and not ask any questions and just see how somebody else is getting statistics questions answered, it's a great opportunity as well. It's not any involvement that is required, it's not recorded. It's just a conversation. And you can see the photo there, on the left is our other associate director and Dr. Sarah Inkpen on the right, our director, Dr. Melanie Brown, and Dr. Sarah Inkpen helps us on the weekend, I believe we're getting more people interested in hosting this as well. But you can visit the blue link there for more information and Kim provided the e-mail address in the chat room as well. Thank you very much for providing that and, so, you can register that way. They're a great opportunity. We've had really good success with them and it's been really great, we're very happy that we can offer them twice per weekend.

Visual: Slide changes to “Tutoring facts”

Audio: Shawn: So, just a couple tutoring facts about what we do and what the percentage of students that we've noticed what's going on here is, we have an average about 40 students per webinar. We have 50% of those students are first-time attendees, so this is your first time at one of our webinars or any webinar in general, you're not alone. There's also an average of 42% of students returning attendees. So students who have seen one of our webinars and are coming back again. Our one-on-one tutoring services, we had a survey responses in 2016, 71% of students rated the tutoring session as an excellent experience. 88% of students state they will use the tutoring service again. And 80% of students report that ASC tutoring services had a positive impact on their overall success at Walden university.

Visual: Slide changes to “How to Interact with the ASC” title slide.

Audio: Shawn: So, there are numerous ways, it looks like there's a little bit of -- before I begin, I want to check the chat box. It looks like there's a little bit going on there. It looks like there's no questions, though. So, there are numerous ways to interact with the Academic Skills Center. What I like to say is that we are doing our best to meet students where they are. And the way we do that is with different interaction styles.

Visual: Slide changes to “Website” and includes links to different areas of the Academic Skills Center Website.

Audio: Shawn: So, of course, our main way of interacting with you is through our website, which is found on the blue link there. It's also found at, which is our vanity hyperlink. You can see the hyperlink there. If you download the PDF or the PowerPoint, you'll be able to click on that as well, where we have webinar archive, we have the e-guide, which is the accompany to the student readiness orientation, we offer the tutoring courses and workshops and then we have about us as well. So, you can go there to find out all the information about the Academic Skills Center, but if you don't come directly to the website, you find us through other means, there are other various other ways to find us, too.

Visual: Slide changes to “Monthly Webinars” including- Skill-Builders, Webinars, and a link to registration- 

Audio: Shawn: We host mostly webinars that cover such topics as math, we have this ASC overview, we cover statistics, SPSS and MS Office as well. You can register for our student webinars by clicking on the blue button right there and checking out what we're offering on a monthly basis.

Visual: Slide changes to “YouTube” which includes playlists available on the YouTube Channel

Audio: Shawn: We have a YouTube channel. This is a way for us to interact with students that we can have live instruction or recorded instruction that's available for them as well.

So, our YouTube channel is at Walden University Academic Skills. We have Word tutorials, videos ranging from two minutes to an hour-long presentation on statistics. But sometimes we have these great, quick office skill builder series where you can come in and get a quick tip about PowerPoint or Microsoft Word, we have stats tutorials built up, we have skill builder sessions recorded that are very specific, addressing great, wonderful statistics topics that have been really helpful over the years and we have a great library of those.

Like Emily mentioned earlier, we also have courses and workshops previews. We have interviews with the faculty. And the people who have created the courses. We have PowerPoint tutorials and we also have StatsChat Live!, which is a series that we did where our statistitions, our instructor support specialists would meet with students and answer their questions live about a specific topic and we recorded those and put those on the website as well.

Visual: Slide changes to “Savvy Student Newsletter” information. 

Audio: Shawn: Lately, as of August, we have started a savvy student newsletter. This comes out on the first Friday of every month. It is an e-mail in PDF form. It is just one page. I do my best to keep it to just one page because I know how many students -- how many e-mails students receive. It's an opt-in newsletter. So it is not something that we'll push on you. It's something that if you want to subscribe, you just click on that blue link and then you can subscribe to our newsletter. It has all of the latest information, all the latest courses and workshops that are coming up, it has a monthly tip from one of the -- from students that submit the monthly tips, and it has webinar schedule and various news in it as well. So if you click on that blue link or on that photo, you can go sign up for the newsletter.

Visual: Slide changes to “Social Media” include Twitter (@WaldenASC) and Facebook.

Audio: Shawn: We are on social media. We are on Twitter @waldenASC. This is more for up-to-the-minute support and skill information and different things like that. We usually commercial our webinars and cover different events, for instance, I'm traveling to national faculty meeting this weekend, going to cover a little bit about graduation.

We also do faculty Friday where we introduce faculty members. We do tutor Tuesday where we introduce tutors. And we do Walden Wednesday every Wednesday where we have a quiz about Walden University, which is nice, too.

Visual: Slide changes to “Savvy Student Blog”–

·       Blog-

Audio: Shawn: As of this year, we have started a savvy student blog. We have six blogs, because it is July, so we have six blogs. And they feature different tips and skills that students can learn about from different Academic Skills Center staff members and faculty member. They also focus on best practices and skill centered, learn are very quick, about 200, 250-word posts. They're really nice because they range from finances, academic finances -- excuse me, accounting and finances to tips on how to best use Microsoft Word, on tips to being a critical reader. They're really a great way, more informal way instead of our website to interact with -- have students interact with our services.

Visual: Slide changes to “Savvy Podcast"

·       Podcast-

Audio: Shawn: Next, we have a savvy student podcast, which I just got done recording this morning. You can subscribe via iTunes, and it's also on sound cloud. This features one-on-one interviews with staff and faculty, they're about 10 to 13 minutes long, and I host them, where I interview staff and faculty members about what they've -- what their role is, how they are situated within the Academic Skills Center and how -- what their experience has been with Walden. A lot of the people that I speak to are Academic Skills Center staff and faculty, but they're also Walden graduates. I think every single person I've spoken to so far has been a Walden University student. And they have great wisdom and wonderful information to show -- excuse me -- to tell everybody about their experience at Walden. It's been a great experience recording these and offering these for students, just another way that we can meet students where they are so they can find out about the Academic Skills Center.

Visual: Slide changes to “Who to contact at the ASC” title slide.

Audio: Shawn: I also want to, before I get to who to contact, in the lower right-hand corner, you'll see web links. You can click on those as well where it says Academic Skills Center home, that's our home page, and the newsletters, the subscription page, and then the blog and podcast as well.

So, these last few slides, I wanted to save for the last because I wanted to see if anyone's built up any questions and they want to talk to anybody about something specific like, gosh, I have a question about accounting and finance and I don't know who to contact, here you go.

Visual: Slide changes to “Tutoring Services”-


Audio: Shawn: So, we have a general e-mail for tutoring at ASCtutoring@mail.waldenu .edu. The PowerPoint got covered up. Word support. Math support. Stat support. And accounting course help as well. So make sure to hold onto these e-mail addresses because if you have a stats question, a math question or a simple Word question or a really difficult Word question, these are the e-mail addresses that you want to use to contact.

So, make sure to hold onto this slide and download the PDF or download the PowerPoint and write those down, whatever you need, because if you have a difficult question that's coming up for you, and you have something to solve with Word question or stats or math, we are there for you.

Visual: Slide changes to “CAEX Courses & Workshops”

Audio: Shawn: There is one general e-mail address for the CAEX courses and workshops, it's, we'll be able to answer all the questions you have about courses and workshops, such as where to go to sign up for those or any questions about the content of those courses and workshops.

Visual: Slide changes to “General Inquires”

Audio: Shawn: The Academic Skills Center has a general question so if you really don't know who to contact, you have a specific question, you don't know who to contact, just shoot us an e-mail at our roll account at, probably the easiest to remember.

All these e-mails, we want to make sure to leave those e-mails with you so that you can contact us when you have any questions because I know that's something that is very difficult when you're going along, who do I contact, whom do I speak to, and I wanted to make sure to include those as well.

And I see Kim through a -- threw a couple other e-mails in there, Nvivo software and finance courses, thank you very much, Kim, for putting those in there. All right.

Visual: Slide changes to “Any Questions”

Audio: Shawn: So, I wanted to end the session by asking if there are any questions?

We only have a few minutes left, but I wanted to make sure that if while we are here and while Emily and I and Kim and I are here, we wanted to ask you if there's any questions that you have for us and just type them into the chat box and if we have or have not answered them for you, I'm very happy if we have, but if we have not, you can use the e-mail or ask questions now. I don't see any questions coming in. Well, folks, -- somebody's typing. Emily, did you have anything you wanted to add to what I went over quite quickly?

Audio: Emily: Can you hear me?

Audio: Shawn: Yes.

Audio: Emily: No, I don't have anything to add.

Audio: Shawn: Okay. Well, we're coming up to the top of the hour. If anybody has any questions. Thank you very much for attending. I know this was a lot of information. I know it went very quickly. So I really appreciate everybody joining us and this webinar recording will be available on our YouTube channel within the week.

And if you would like to sign up for a savvy student newsletter that's available on the lower right-hand corner where it says web links, you can find our blog and podcast there as well and the Academic Skills Center home page. Please download the slides if you want to click on any of those hyperlinks that you want to e-mail or find out any more information, we really appreciate you joining us and we really appreciate you taking the time out of your day to find out more about the Academic Skills Center and how much -- and when and how we can help you out during your journey here at Walden.

So thank you very much today. And I want to thank Emily for helping me out in presenting this information. I want to thank Kim for answering questions in the background as well. I don't want to go too far without thanking them.