Academic Help

It’s midterms season.

Not only does this mean that my vulnerability to making poor late-night food decisions will increase drastically in the next week, it also means that students around campus, whether they need lots of help or just have a few questions, will be seeking out support from the many academic resources that WashU has to offer. If you choose to become a student at WashU, here’s just a sampling of the many ways you can get academic help and achieve your wildest GPA dreams:

Cornerstone, our primary academic resource on campus located on the South 40. Of the innumerable services it offers, a few that stand out (mostly because I’ve made extensive use of them) include:

Individual tutoring: immediate and long-term academic help is available from trained professionals and peer mentors by appointment for any class. If you can’t find a tutor you fits your schedule or the class you’re looking for, Cornerstone will work out an arrangement for you.

Walk-in help desks: you can stop by anytime they are in session for Physics, Math, and Writing help. No appointment necessary.

Peer Mentoring Groups like PLTL (Peer-Led Team Learning) for Chemsitry and Calculus: this program pairs trained upperclassmen with small groups of calculus or chemistry students who work on group exercises directly connected to course work.


Peer mentors in the residential colleges (RPMs) for physics and calculus. RPMs are trained sophomores, juniors, and seniors who received at least an A in the courses for which they provide mentoring. No appointment necessary for this service as well!

Cornerstone offers regular workshops, intensive courses, and one-on-one advising in core academic skills. Many Cornerstone staff members are trained experts in academic fields such as Chemistry and Writing, Medicine and Law. Cornerstone also works with MD/PhD students and outside consultants to help students prepare for and meet important academic challenges. Regular workshops and learning events take place in the following areas:

They also offer graduate test preparation for the MCAT and LSAT, along with intensive programs for students like the January and Summer Intensive Programs in Calculus, General Chemistry, and Organic Chemistry and Medicine and Research Connections for Incoming Freshmen.

Finally, Cornerstone is the go-to disability resource center for students with disabilities seeking academic help.

The list of services they offer can go on and on, but for now it’s time to talk about the:

Writing Center

This is a free service for all students (both graduate and undergraduate) currently enrolled at WashU, as well as for faculty members. We will work with students on essays, senior theses, personal statements, oral presentations, and more. There is also help from:

Individual Schools

The individual schools on campus present their own services as well. The Engineering school has a separate engineering tutoring program, along with its very own Calculus Help Room in Lopata. The business school has separate tutoring programs as well.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly in my opinion, every professor also hosts their own office hours that students are welcome to stop by at (even the TAs, if your class has one, host office hours for students to get even more additional help).

Whether you’re having difficulty in class or not, there are so many ways to get help or an even bigger boost on your already-solid grades at WashU that no class (whether you’re pre-med or not!) should seem impossible or present a barrier keeping you from achieving your academic and professional goals. If you need help, all you have to do is ask!


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