Brad’s Sample Cover Letter

September 30, 2003

Dear ____,

Greetings from Madison ! I hope you’re doing well.

Thank you so much for agreeing to help me with this research project. My interest in former tutors has led me to engage in a formal research project about the short- and long-term effects of having been a writing tutor in college. Paula Gillespie, the writing center director at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Harvey Kail, the writing center director at the University of Maine, and I are working together to design a national study on the influence of peer tutoring for former peer writing tutors. One of our first steps is to pilot questions for this survey with a selected group of alumni from our undergraduate tutoring programs.

I will be describing this study and presenting preliminary results at a writing center conference in Pennsylvania in late October and at a composition conference in Texas next March. I will report responses anonymously, identifying particular tutors only by their major, how long it’s been since they graduated, how long they were a writing fellow, what they’ve done since graduation, etc. By responding to this survey, you will be giving your permission for me to use your responses in this way. If you have any questions about the purpose of this research or about how your responses will be used, please be sure to ask me.

The questions themselves begin below. The length of time it will take to answer will vary with your answers and your experience. I hope that answering these will provide a good opportunity to reflect on your time as a Writing Fellow. If you feel you want to add anything I haven’t asked about, please do so. If you have suggestions for making this study more valuable or for improving or clarifying the questions, please share those ideas with me. And please be honest—there are no particular answers I’m looking for; what I’m looking for are honest, thoughtful, candid, and detailed reflections on your experience.

If you could respond by October 10th, I’d really appreciate it. Thanks!

All the best,


Brad Hughes

Director, Writing Center

Director, Writing Across the Curriculum

Department of English

University of Wisconsin-Madison

600 North Park Street

Madison, WI 53706


Paula’s Cover Letter

Harvey’s Cover Letter