Special Programs

In addition to our tutoring services, workshop offerings, and online resources, the SJSU Writing Center also offers a variety of special events and programs every semester. Check this page for details, including any necessary registration information. 

Current Events/Programs

Events and programs will be announced throughout the 2019-2020 academic year! 

Fall 2019 Practically Speaking Seminar

Practically Speaking Seminar FA 19 Flyer

Practically Speaking is a limited seven-week group experience for 14 SJSU graduate students to enhance their impromptu public speaking skills and develop lifelong communication tools for their professional and academic life.

Impromptu speaking is speaking with no preparation for a short time about 1- to 3-minutes. Impromptu speaking is different from giving prepared speeches, where you write and practice a speech before giving it. This group will work on developing the skills needed to speak spontaneously in an organized and compelling way. We will practice speech structure, audience awareness, vocal variety, and body language. 

Dates and Times:
October 1, 2019 to November 12, 2019 (Every Tuesday)
3:40 PM to 5:30 PM

Location: Clark Hall 124

Application Period: August 21 to September 9 at 5:00pm

Fall 2019 Graduate Writing Retreat

Graduate Writing Retreat FlierA free three-day weekend retreat for 20 graduate students, within 12 months of graduation, working on their long-term writing projects, such as theses, research, and literature reviews. Participants are expected to come each day. Participants will do a prep meeting, write individually, do collaborative discussions, and learn writing strategies. Food and drinks provided.

The retreat will contain presentations and discussions in the mornings followed by individual writing time, during which each student will independently work on their long-term projects. Students should choose projects that will last during the entire three days.

Dates and Times:
Saturday, October 26, 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM 
Sunday, October 27, 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM 
Saturday, November 2, 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Location: Clark Hall 111

Application Period: August 21 to September 16 at 9:00pm
Apply: http://www.tinyurl.com/writingretreatfall2019

ISSS Writing Workshop Series

The Writing Center is pleased to partner with International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) on a series of writing workshops for international students. Other members of the SJSU community are welcome to join too!

ISSS Workshop Series Flier

  • Emailing Netiquette: Academic and Professional Communication

Friday, September 6, 2019 | 1:30-2:30 p.m. | Writing Center, Clark Hall Rm. 124

All emails are not created equal. An email to an employer or faculty member should be written in a different style and tone than one to a friend. You want to get it right the first time! This workshop will teach you all about professional and academic emails and appropriate "net etiquette." RSVP

  • Un-blurring Plagiarism and Paraphrasing

Wednesday, October 9, 2019 | 4:00-5:00 p.m. | Writing Center, Clark Hall Rm. 124

Paraphrasing is an important but tricky skill to master. When does something stop being plagiarism and start being paraphrasing? This workshop provides a range of examples for participants to spot the difference and practice paraphrasing a variety of texts, including materials from STEM and social sciences. RSVP

  • PowerPoint like a Pro: Making Slides and Data Visualizations that Don’t Suck

Thursday, November 14, 2019 | 3:00-4:00 p.m. | Writing Center, Clark Hall Rm. 124

Slides and data visualizations can make or break your presentation. This workshop is meant to teach design principles and introduce online tools for non-designers. Before and after examples will be used to showcase how to use color schemes and white space, to contrast elements, and to communicate main ideas effectively. Students should bring their own laptops for the slide redesigning. RSVP


2018-2019 Events/Programs

The events listed below already took place. We will be offering some of them again in the future, so please check this page and our social media accounts for updated information. 


Writing for the PublicWriting for the Public Flier

A free drop-in workshop program for faculty and graduate students writing their own OpEds for publication or creating OpEd assignments for their courses.

Location: IRC 101


February 21, 10:30-11:45
March 7, 10:30-11:45
March 21, 10:30-11:45
April 11, 10:30-11:45
April 25, 10:30-11:45
May 9, 10:30-11:45

SJSU April Poetry Writing Contest2019 Poetry Contest Graphic

Join us in celebrating Earth Day and National Poetry Month. Write an acrostic poem related to the environment or Earth Day. An acrostic poem has one letter on each line to spell a word.


Dazzling droplets
Ephemeral wish
Water of life

Separate contests with prizes for students and staff/faculty. Each contest will have a winner and two runners up. First place will be a poetry book of your choice and Writing Center goodies. The runners up will receive a writing journal and Writing Center goodies. Winning entries will be posted on our social media on April 24.

Deadline: April 21 by 11:59 pm

Student Submissions: tinyurl.com/sp19poemstudentcontest

Faculty/Staff Submissions: tinyurl.com/sp19poemfacstaffcontest


Community Story Community Story 2019 Event

An event that allows you to get in touch with your creative side. A chance to take part in writing a story with the SJSU community. There will be multiple story prompts to choose from, and then each student will write a line to add to the story. At the end, there will be four different stories written by many people. Participation prizes included. 


Location: Outside of Clark Hall

Date: Wednesday, April 17, 12:30-2:30


NCWCA ConferenceNCWCA Conference Flier 

The SJSU Writing Center will be hosting the Northern California Writing Centers Association (NCWCA) Conference.

April 5, 2019, Half-day pre-conference workshop
April 6, 2019, Full-day conference

San Jose State University 
One Washington Square
San Jose, CA 95192

The final registration deadline is March 29, 2019 by 11:59 PM PST. Visit sjsu.edu/ncwca for more information! 


Coffee with the Tutors 

Stop by our Clark Hall location to chat with some of the Writing Center tutors over coffee, tea, and light refreshments!

: Clark Hall 124
Date: Thursday, March 21st, 10am-3pm


How to Structure an Accomplishment Statement

Visit us to learn the right writing skills needed to structure better Accomplishment Statements in your resume by engaging in a fun and challenging activity.

Location: In Front of Clark Hall

When: Tuesday, March 19, 11 am - 2 pm


Practically SpeakingSpring 2019 Pratically Speaking Flyer
A free six-week group experience for graduate students to improve their impromptu public speaking skills for academic and professional daily life.

Location: Clark Hall

February 20 - March 27, Wednesdays, 3:30 - 5:00
March 5 - April 16, Tuesdays, 3:00 - 4:30
March 8 - April 19, Fridays, 3:30 - 5:00

Application Deadline: February 6 
Apply: www.tinyurl.com/wcps19 



Spring 2019 Graduate Writing Retreatspring 2019 Writing Retreat

A free two-day writing retreat for graduate students working on long-term projects, such as theses, research papers, and literature reviews. Participants will do a prep meeting, write individually, do collaborative discussions, and learn writing strategies. Food and coffee will be provided.

Location: Clark Hall

When: March 2 - March 3, 8:30am to 6:30 p.m. each day

Application Deadline: February 10 
Apply: www.tinyurl.com/sjsuwrs19




SJSU-Themed Haiku ContestSJSU-Themed Haiku Contest

The Writing Center invites all SJSU staff, faculty, and students to submit up to three SJSU-themed haiku to our Instagram contest. All first and second place winners will see their haiku illustrated on Instagram on Thursday, November 29. The student first place prize is a $20 Spartan Gift Card. The student runner-up will receive a $10 Spartan Gift Card. All gift cards are redeemable on campus only. Faculty prizes will also be announced on November 29.

  • Submissions will be accepted until November 27.
  • Only THREE (3) haiku are allowed per person.
  • Submissions must be SJSU-themed

Submit your haiku at tinyurl.com/sjsuhaikus


Super Short Scary Stories ContestSuper Short Scary Stories Contest Flier

The SJSU Writing Center and the Poets & Writers Coalition invite all SJSU students to write a three-sentence scary short story in honor of October. First place wins a $30 Spartan Gift Card. Two runner-ups will receive a $20 Spartan Gift Card. All gift cards are redeemable on campus only.

  • Submissions will be accepted until October 25 at 11:59pm.
  • Only ONE (1) entry is allowed per person.
  • Submissions must be no more than three sentences.

Be scary! Submit stories at bit.ly/scarywc


Speaking English Group (SEG)

When:Speaking English Group
2nd and 4th Wednesdays in September and October
9/12, 1:30-2:30, "Casual vs. Formal English"
9/26, 1:30-2:30, "English Idioms"
10/10, 1:30-2:30, "Culture Shock in Writing"
10/24, 1:30-2:30, "University Life & Goal Setting"

Clark Hall 124

"SEG" is a Speaking English Group run by the SJSU Writing 
Center. We offer free coffee and a space for international 
and bilingual students along with other members of the 
SJSU community to explore topics relating to English, 
academic life, and professional success. We will provide
free coffee for participants. 

Downloadable Flier


Fall 2018 Graduate Writing RetreatGraduate Writing Retreat Flier

Friday, 10/5, 2:00-6:30
Saturday, 10/6, 9:30-6:30
Sunday, 10/7, 3:00-7:30

Student Union 

The Graduate Writing Retreat is a three-day retreat for graduate students working on long-term projects, such as theses, research, and literature reviews. Participants will individually write, do collaborative discussions, and learn writing and goal-setting strategies. We will provide food 
and coffee for participants. 
Downloadable Flier


Practically Speaking

When:Practically Speaking Flier
Every Wednesday from October 10 to November 14
10/10, 4:30-6:00
10/17, 4:30-6:00
10/24, 4:30-6:00
10/31, 4:30-6:00
11/7, 4:30-6:00
11/14, 4:30-6:00

Clark Hall 124

"Practically Speaking" is a free six-week cohort experience for graduate students to improve their impromptu public speaking skills in preparation for courses, conferences, job
interviews, and professional daily life.  
Downloadable Flier


Transfer Student Midterm Writing Help

When:Transfer Student Midterm Writing Help Flier
Monday, 10/15, 3:10-7:00

Clark Hall 126

This event will be a space for SJSU transfer undergraduate and graduate students to receive drop-in 20-minute writing sessions, food, and coffee. Students are welcome to stop by anytime! 
Downloadable Flier