ASLC appointments

After help with your assignments or research? The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers individual sessions to help you.

Coursework students come for help on a particular assignment such as an essay, report, reflection or presentation (to name but a few). Alternatively they come to discuss a specific skills such as referencing, time management, or preparing for exams.

For research students, appointments in the early part of your project might cover managing the project, researching and note taking, or writing your research proposal. Later on sessions might cover planning your thesis structure or writing individual chapters.

Whatever your reason, we aim to be developmental, that is we assist you to develop your strategies and skills to succeed at ANU.

To book an appointment, click on the Appointment button in the top right corner of the screen.


We are situated on the level 2 of the John Yencken building and unfortunately there is no lift. If you need your appointment to be on the ground floor, please call or email us when you make your booking so we can make appropriate arrangements. We apologise for the inconvenience.

About appointments

Each appointment goes for 45 minutes and starts on the hour and finishes at 45 minutes past the hour. Please submit any drafts by 8:30 of the morning of your appointment via the Book Appointment button. Drafts do not need to be complete and can be very rough. Remember you do not need to submit a draft for an appointment, you can come and discuss how you might structure and plan your work.

Our appointment service is in high demand. For that reason if you cannot attend an appointment, we ask that you cancel early.  You can cancel either online via the Book Appointment button or contact us directly. This allows enough time for another student to book in. If you cancel within 24 hours of your appointment, you will not be able to have another appointment for 2 weeks.

If you fail to attend an appointment or cancel within the 24 hour period more than once, you will not be able to make another appointment that semester. Your cooperation provides a fair system for all students.  

How best to use our services

Our aim is to help you develop your fundamental academic skills so you can work independently. In an appointment, we might look at practical strategies to plan and structure your work. Or we could look at a draft, and discuss changes and techniques to make your argument stronger or your key message in a report clearer. Alternatively we could discuss managing your workload or how to read and take notes more effectively. While an individual session may focus on one of your assignments, the strategies we discuss will apply to all your assignments. 

Each session should extend and refine your skills. A student new to writing argumentative essays, may have several appointments in their first semester. As they develop their skills and gain confidence, they may not need to make any more appointments for essays. However, if later in their studies, they get a different type of assessment or wish to develop an aspect of their writing they may come back for more sessions.

Consider coming to see us early. Let us assist you in planning and structuring your work. All of us find changing earlier drafts much easier than later drafts. We are very happy to see rough and incomplete drafts. You don't have to bring a draft to the appointment. If you are struggling to get started, we can talk through your ideas and the writing process.

If more than one person is planning on coming for a group assignment, please let us know. Some of our appointment rooms are quite small, and will not comfortably fit groups in them. Letting us know in advance will ensure that we have a room that is big enough for everyone.

What we cannot help with

As our focus is developmental and we have a high demand for our appointments, there are some restrictions on what we can do. You can book one appointment every two weeks; this will give you time to try any strategies to a new piece of work. Similarly, we would not expect to see you for every piece of assessment or every two weeks throughout your program - this clearly would not be developmental. Where we believe that appointments are repeating the same strategies and skills we will stop seeing you for that skill.

As our focus is developmental:

  • we do not provide an editing, proofreading or grammar-checking service, as these are not developmental. Check our editing resources for more information and advice regarding editing and proofreading.
  • we do not see drafts on the date the assignment is due as it is too late to make meaningful changes.

As we are not experts in your content area:

  • we cannot provide assistance with the actual academic content of your work. What we can do is talk through your ideas with you and so help you "get what is in your head on the paper".
  • we cannot provide you with an estimate of a likely grade for your work.

And finally:

  • we do not see work for units from the Crawford School of Public Policy or Military Studies Program (Australian Command and Staff College) as these areas have their own support staff. Students from these areas can attend ASLC workshops.
  • we do see students enrolled in the Diploma or Associate Degree programs at ANU College. If you are enrolled in another program with ANU College, you need to see the support staff from the College.
  • we cannot see take home exams.
  • we only see work that is directly related to your program of study. So for example, we do not assist students with IELTS tests or scholarship and grant applications.
  • we ask that you do not record the appointments.
  • we have a zero tolerance policy for abusive or threatening behaviours directed at staff or students. This includes shouting, swearing, threats, name calling, racist comments and inappropriate gestures. Without exception, those who abuse will be required to leave our offices immediately and will no longer be able to access this service.