Words of Wisdom
In 1961, the publication of Webster's Third New International Dictionary set off a maelstrom of controversy because it took a descriptive rather than prescriptive stance toward language. Among the protested usages endorsed by the Third were "like" for "as," "due to" for "because," and "different than." "Enthuse," "finalize," "contact," and "yak" were among the verbs that numerous grammar pundits felt should not have been included.
The Texas A&M University Writing Center has developed scheduling software called Cleopatra, or CLEO, with the help of Texas A&M University’s Information Technology Solutions and Support department. Students can make face-to-face appointments, online email appointments, and online web conferencing appointments, all through CLEO. CLEO is also mobile-device friendly so students can manage their appointments on the go.
Writing consultants manage all of their daily tasks via CLEO. They check their schedules, look at student entry surveys, review client notes, and keep notes of their sessions in CLEO. When consultants consult online, they work with files that students have uploaded to CLEO and submit the document with comments back to the student via CLEO. The newest feature of CLEO is web conferencing, which includes voice and video as well as document sharing capabilities. A web link in the CLEO appointment schedule takes the client and the consultant to a unique web conference session set up in WebEx. When students make a web conference appointment in CLEO, a unique web conference session is simultaneously set up in WebEx, making the process seamless for client and consultant alike.
Texas A&M University Writing Center administrators use CLEO to manage schedules and appointments, users and permission roles, and run data reports. CLEO is connected to the TAMU Enterprise Directory and pulls student data, which includes the students’ courses, the names of their instructors, their majors, college affiliation, and classification. In addition, students log in using their Central Authentication System (CAS) logins that they use for most university online services.
The University Writing Center is willing to share the code for CLEO with other university writing centers but offers no support for the program other than the installation instructions that accompany the code. Schools who are interested in obtaining the code must sign an MOU with the Texas A&M University Writing Center. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
For the current production version of Cleopatra, the hardware requirements are as follows:
Win Server 2008 R2 or greater , (IIS 7.0+)
NET Framework 4.0 or greater •Enterprise Library 5.0
MS SQL Server 2008 R2 or greater
Writing centers interested in receiving the code will need their own robust IT staff to install and maintain the hardware and software.