Frequently Asked Questions


Graduate Peer Mentor Program

Who are the consultants?

How do I pick a consultant?

There isn't a consultant from my discipline. What should I do?

Do I have to make appointments with the same consultant?

Do I need to have a draft of a document to make an appointment?

What do I do if I know I'm going to be late to an appointment? Should I cancel?

I'm in my final stages of my dissertation/thesis. Are there resources available?

I need writing help but I will not be on campus. What should I do?

I need to develop material for a job packet. Are there resources available to help me?

When booking an appointment, if I want to check the availability of multiple consultants at once, once I check my area (for example, IWC), can I click beside all of the IWC consultants at once so I can get all of their availability back at once?


International Teaching Assistants Program & OECT

I tried to register for the test, but the link is not working (or the page says it's expired).  What should I do?

The registration page asks for a password. Can I get a password for it?

I am a new teaching assistant, but I can't register for the test because I arrived late to campus. What should I do?

I have a schedule conflict with my OECT testing. Can I reschedule my test?

When will the next testing be held?

Can I take OECT earlier than the posted dates?

I don't/can't see my OECT result online.

I got Level 2, 3, or 4, and the result says I have to take ENGL 180. Is it mandatory?

I can't sign up for ENGL 180 on AccessPlus. What should I do?


CCE Resources

I know writing is important, but I have a hard time setting a schedule and holding myself accountable. Are there resources to help me with this?

Do you offer help with stuff beyond written languages? Are there resources for oral communication so I can prepare for a presentation?


Graduate Peer Mentor Program 

  • Who are the consultants?
    • CCE writing consultants are all graduate students from a variety of disciplines. Our consultants completed a thorough application process and an intensive, semester-long training to become qualified to offer specialized help to graduate students and postdocs. 
  • How do I pick a consultant?
    • There are a variety of methods for this, including picking a consultant based on their academic discipline or picking someone based on how well their schedule fits with yours. For example, you may find it helpful to have a consultant from an academic discipline different than yours to assess the readability of a document. Click here to learn about our consultants.
  • Do I have to make appointments with the same consultant?
    • No, you are welcome to make an appointment with any consultant. Feel free to try out appointments with a variety of consultants as each person will provide you with a unique perspective. However, some individuals may find it helpful to meet with the same consultant on a regular basis and build a repertoire.
  • Do I need to have a draft of a document to make an appointment?
    • No, you don't need to have a draft of a document to make an appointment. Individuals can make appointments to brainstorm and discuss ideas with consultants. In this role, our consultants act as a critical audience that students could bounce ideas off of.

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International Teaching Assistants Program & OECT

  • I tried to register for the test, but the link is not working (or the page says it's expired).  What should I do?
    • The registration system is temporarily closed for one of the following reasons:
      • that the registration will begin on a date designated for each test date (or for a certain testing period), which is specified in the Test Dates & Registration page; or
      • to avoid overbooking.
    • If you tried the registration after an indicated registration date and found that the registration page was closed, please try it on the next registration date. If your department has made a special arrangement with us for your testing, please contact us at itas@iastate.edu
  • The registration page asks for a password. Can I get a password for it?
    • It is temporarily available only for a limited group of students whose testing has been pre-arranged with us through their departments or via our waiting list (in case of overbooking). Please try the regular registration on a registration date specified on Test Dates & Registration.
  • I am a new teaching assistant, but I can't register for the test because I arrived late to campus.  What should I do?
    • No more testing sessions are available. Please contact us at itas@iastate.edu so that we can add you in our waiting list. We will contact you when we have a seat available for you. In case you can't take the test as we don't have any more seats available for you, please inform your department of the situation. They might be able to re-assign you to a different teaching duty. You may take the test in the next testing cycle.
  • I have a schedule conflict with my OECT testing.  Can I reschedule my test?
    • Please contact us at itas@iastate.edu as soon as possible to request for a schedule change or cancel your test. We may not be able to accommodate all of students' requests, especially when they ask for a schedule change 1-2 days before their test date. We don't accept a rescheduling request made a day before the test date. In that case, students should either attend the test (by missing the other appointment scheduled at the same time) or cancel the test (so that another student can take the test). Please contact us as soon as possible if you need to cancel the test.
    • We offer OECT testing four times a year as follows:
      • Summer: One or two days in the last week of July and throughout August before the Fall semester begins (and 1-2 days during the first week of the term for late-arrival students)
      • Fall/Winter (I): During the Dead Week and the finals week (late November - early December)
      • Winter (II): During the orientation week of the Spring semester
      • Spring: During the Dead Week and the finals week (late April - early May)
  • Can I take OECT earlier than the posted dates?
    • Unfortunately not. We can't accommodate individual students' testing requests due to limited resources. If you need OECT scores for the application to the Preparation for Future Faculty (PFF) program, just indicate in your application that you will take the test on the earlier date possible.
  • I don't/can't see my OECT result online.  
    • Please login to the system with your NetID and password. If you still don't find your result on the page, please contact us with your exam ID and NetID. We will fix the problem as soon as possible.
  • I got Level 2, 3, or 4, and the result says I have to take ENGL 180.  Is it mandatory?
    • We highly recommend students to take ENGL 180 if they don't acquire Level 1 in OECT. However, if they have a schedule conflict with the assigned ENGL 180 course, they may take it in the following term. Also, they may choose not to take the course if their TA duties are just grading. Note that students who do not complete the ENGL 180 requirement will be allowed to re-take the test only a full year after their (previous) test date (see our testing policies for more details). If they have to re-take the test at the end of the term, they must take ENGL 180 with no exceptions. Students' TAship or POS will not be affected if the student chooses not to take ENGL 180. (ENGL 180 is NOT part of the English requirement imposed on all international students at Iowa State.)
  • I can't sign up for ENGL 180 on AccessPlus.  What should I do?
    • Students CANNOT sign up for ENGL 180 through AccessPlus, but they should see the OECT coordinator in person to get an add slip for the course. Please see more detailed information about the course signup here.

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CCE Resources

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