First Year Writing Program

Mentoring Guidelines for both Mentor and Incoming First Year Writing Faculty

1. Initial Mentor Orientation

  • Should take place during the spring semester
  • Should go over expectations for mentoring commitment
  • Should provide some direction (reading materials, etc) on mentoring

2. First Mentor-Mentee Contact

  • Once new faculty are hired, they should be assigned a mentor (between spring and fall semesters)            
  • Mentor should offer assistance
    • Contact by phone and/or email
    • FYW Program expectations
    • Syllabus development (offer sample syllabi)
    • Location of FYW policies and writing / assessment guidelines
    • Book orders
    • Other transitions to faculty role at UWG
  • Mentee should provide mentor with
    • draft syllabus and tentative course calendar prior to semester for review
    • draft of sample assignments

3. First Mentor-Mentee Meeting (Fall)

  • This should be one of the first meetings that new faculty attend
  • Mentors must attend as well
  • Introduce mentoring process and go over mentoring contract**
  • Mentors and mentees can meet independently after this initial meeting, perhaps for lunch, either in pairs or in groups.  

        Purpose of First Group Meeting/Workshop

  • Review syllabus before it is submitted for final approval
  • Meeting to discuss start of classes & questions
  • Grade Norming and Discussion of Out-of-Class Grading Criteria/Rubric

4. Fall semester Tasks

Week 1:

  • Meeting (at least briefly) to trouble shoot for start of semester concerns.
  • Confirm that syllabi have been submitted and posted online. Assist if necessary.

By Week 3:

  • Conferral on Spring textbook orders (before book orders are due)
  • Group Mentee Meeting to discuss additional policies and classroom management questions; solicit feedback.

Prior to Formal Teaching Observation:

  • Provide a minimum of one informal teaching observation that includes the review of graded essays. More observations may be requested by the mentee or required by the mentor. Informal observation must be preceded by a prefatory meeting prior to observation to discuss expectations and a follow-up meeting to reflect on observation. All three meetings must be completed before the formal teaching evaluation.

Before Thanksgiving:

  • Meeting to discuss the fall semester and to do some planning for the upcoming Spring semester. Development of syllabi for ENGL 1102 especially if first time teaching it at UWG.

Beyond the expectations listed above, there are no mandated meetings. However, effective mentors will make a point of communicating weekly with their mentees. Stopping by the mentee’s office to visit, phone calls, emails, etc. are all possible strategies for effective communication.

5.   Formal Observations

  • Each mentor will observe the class of a new faculty member who is not his/her mentee
  • Review Graded Essays
  • Write a report based on these observations; report is due before final exams

6.  Spring Semester Tasks

  • The FYW Director and the FYW Committee should solicit feedback about the process from mentors and mentees.
  • These should be used in revising these guidelines for the upcoming year.
  • Continued support for the mentee on an as-needed basis



*  The mentoring coordinator may be either the FYW director or another FYW faculty member who reports directly to the FYW director.

** The mentoring contract should stipulate specific expectations but would allow both mentor and mentee to add additional expectations. It should be signed by both the mentor and the mentee.