Writer's With Anxiety

Due to the magnitude of the ECRSB portfolio requirement, many students will approach the assignment as an overwhelming task beyond their abilities. Their comments stem from everywhere from a writer with writer's block to a student merely fretting about deadlines. While strategies vary enormously to handle writer's stricken with anxiety, consultants should always demonstrate a sympathetic attitude.

Here are some helpful suggestions to allow student's worrying to subside. After all, this is why they display anxiety in the first place.

1. Go over the general expectations, competencies, and assessment standards of the ECRSB Portfolio. Maybe the student's stress has centered upon a simple misunderstanding that could be cleared up from re-emphasizing basic requirements.

2. While much of the portfolio is broken down into tentative deadlines, provide students with additional assistance in dividing up the project into specific, manageable tasks. Doing this will allow students to tackle small goals, giving writers a sense of accomplishment along the way.

3. Instead of students attempting to complete the Business Portfolio in a short span of time, encourage brainstorming and freewriting . Many of the narratives to be composed require extensive thought and revision to fully satisfy the five ECRSB competencies. Help those who would be anxious understand that every piece of writing does not have to be perfect, but preliminary processes are involved to produce sound results.

4. Acknowledge as the consultant that writing can be difficult for everyone at times. Revealing some personal frustrations about your writing can reassure students they are not alone. By showing the value of the ECRSB Portfolio, many will come to the realization that their present labor can reap many rewards.

Portions of these suggestions were taken from Leigh Ryan's The Bedford Guide for Writing Tutors.

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