Writing Center

Writing Center Faculty

 

The Writing Center is staffed by faculty from the English department at SMU, which allows each of these consultants to have insight into the writing processes and instruction that students receive in courses like Discernment and Discourse (DISC). In addition, each instructor brings a unique set of skills and knowledge to help address student work in a variety of academic fields as indicated below. Where ever you are in the writing process, we are here to help. Appointments are available in Canvas, or you can drop-in for a writing lab or drop-in hours, which are listed in the Writing Center Schedule. 

 

 

 

Lydia Allen

Director of The Writing Center

My deep curiosity about the human mind and its development, evolution, and adaptation across environments led me to study the human condition from many angles. I completed degrees in psychology and neuroscience at Texas A&M and Columbia University, respectively. I also completed degrees in English/Philosophy and History of Ideas at University of Texas at Austin and UT Dallas, respectively. I love working with students as they move through the world of ideas, motivated by wonder and curiosity. Seeing the look on students' faces when they learn something a little mind-blowing is the best part of my job!

Specialties:

  • Subject-specific writing in history, philosophy, literary/film studies, and scientific humanities
  • Technical, scientific, or medical writing
  • Working with students with learning differences
  • Writing lab
  • DISC
  • Faculty Consultations

Appointment Hours:

  • Mondays, 11am-12:30pm 
  • Tuesdays, 11am-12:30pm
  • Thursdays, 11am-12pm and 3pm-4:30pm

 

Joan Arbery

DISC Faculty, Honors

I have a BA from the University of Dallas, with a PhD in Literature from Notre Dame. At ND, I spent a year researching in Dublin, then worked as a freelance journalist covering the Dallas arts. Since 2009, I've been teaching at SMU (DISC/Honors), also serving as SMU's Phi Beta Kappa Historian and as a teaching fellow at the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture. Since one of my joys at SMU has been conferencing and discussing drafts with students, I'm thrilled to continue work at the A-LEC this year!

Specialties:

  • DISC Honors
  • Journalism
  • Writing in the broad humanities

Appointment Hours:

  • Mondays 12:30pm-3:30pm
  • Wednesdays 12:30pm-3:30pm

 

Vicki Hill

Writing Center Faculty

After earning my BA in English from the University of California at Berkeley and my PhD in English and American Studies from the University at Buffalo, I spent my SMU career in a variety of roles, many of which, fortunately, kept bringing me back to undergraduates and their many writing projects.  I genuinely enjoy conversations with students at every stage of the writing process, whether it’s turning a question into a topic, revising a thesis in support of newly-discovered evidence, shaping and organizing paragraphs to make an argument more effective, or refining sentences so that ideas emerge with impact, clarity, and grace.

Specialties:

  • Writing in the broad humanities
  • American Studies
  • DISC

Appointment Hours:

  • Tuesdays 2pm-5pm
  • Wednesdays 2pm-5pm

 

Pauline Newton

DISC Faculty, Hilltop

Dr. Pauline T. Newton loves not knowing what paper or question will walk through the door when she tutors in the Writing Center. Dr. Newton has served on SMUReads, the President's Commission for the Needs of People with Disabilities, and the President's Commission on the Status of Women.  Her secret loves are the Hilltop Scholars program and informal meetings with students. She does crazy runs and excursions with her friends, including Obstacle Warrior and Viking Runs. She also loves traveling with her seven-year-old twins and husband to Costa Rica and other places around the country and world.

Specialties:

  • Hilltop Scholars
  • DISC
  • Writing Lab 

Appointment Hours:

  • Tuesdays 3:30pm-5pm
  • Thursdays 2pm-5pm

 

Suzanne Nourani

DISC Faculty

An insatiable curiosity led me to gaining an eclectic educational background in language, cultural astronomy, and history. I completed my BA in modern languages from Texas State University and my MA in translation studies at UT Dallas. Currently, I am studying how the development of science inspired literature/entertainment/media throughout time, and vice versa. Both in teaching and in tutoring writing, I love working with students as they learn and navigate the writing process, discover their voices as writers, and think deeply and critically about topics. Ultimately, I aim to help students find meaning, relevancy, and passion in their assignments.

Specialities:

  • Modern languages
  • Scientific humanities
  • History
  • DISC
  • Writing lab

Appointment Hours

  • Mondays 1:30pm-3:30pm

 

Ashley O'Neill

DISC Faculty

Working one-on-one with students and getting to know them better is one of my favorite things about teaching at SMU. Having done this both in the classroom and in the library, I’m excited to be able to work with students more closely at The Writing Center this year. I have graduate degrees in both English and Library Science, so working on research assignments is especially fun for me. In addition to teaching at SMU, I also have ten years of experience working for start-up technology companies, where I honed my skills in writing training materials, website content, and a lot of project proposals. Wherever you are in the writing process, I would love to meet with you.

Specialties:

  • Information literacy and research
  • Technical writing
  • DISC

Appointment Hours

  • Tuesdays 12pm-3pm
  • Thursdays 12pm-3pm

 

Emily Sharma

DISC Faculty

I am proud to be a lecturer in Discernment & Discourse, where I also serve as the English as a Second Language (ESL) Coordinator.  In the Writing Center, I serve as the ESL Specialist, working with multilingual writers in any of their courses.  I especially enjoy welcoming international students to campus, including as a faculty panelist at International AARO, and I was an international student myself in Martinique, England, and Australia.  I hold a graduate degree in applied linguistics from Columbia University, and I am an alumna and fan of all things SMU.  Most of all, I love working with the international and second-language learners on our campus. 

Specialties:

  • English as a Second Language
  • DISC
  • Faculty Consultations

Drop-In Hours:

  • Mondays 11:30am-2:30pm
  • Wednesdays 11:30am-2:30pm