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The USML Writing Center serves students in all degree programs at all skill levels. Whether you are seeking help with researching a topic, need assistance with basic writing skills, or instruction in formatting an academic paper to meet the proper style guidelines, USML offers access to print and online resources and a writing staff that is ready to assist you.


The Center for Speech and Writing staff, including ESL specialists, are available to work with individuals and groups. Contact Writing Center Director, Tom Dougherty ( make an appointment or find out more about our Writing Center workshops.

Name Title Phone Email
Tom Dougherty Director, Center for Speech & Writing 847-970-4859
LuAnn Hoffman Instructor, Center for Speech & Writing
Kathy Konopasek Instructor, Center for Speech & Writing
Sara Larkin Instructor, Center for Speech & Writing
Susan Roy Instructor, Center for Speech & Writing

Library staff are also available to assist you with writing and research on weekdays from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. Contact USML library at (847) 970-4820 or email the library staff (


Here is a list of manuals that provide specific guidelines for writing degree papers. USML's DMin Handbook, which contains instructions for writing the DMin project paper, is available upon request through the Academic Affairs Office.

Brought to you by USML Library and the Writing Center, these authoritative reference databases provide in-depth assistance for writing and research. These interactive databases will assist you with research, writing, grammar, vocabulary, editing, and citations.

Infobase Writer's Reference Center provides users with a convenient one-stop location for all of the tools necessary to write and research effectively. From the mechanics of writing and grammar to style and research, this online resource thoroughly covers the fundamentals of quality writing, provides a wealth of vocabulary-building dictionaries, and presents a step-by-step guide to writing a good essay.


The full online version of the Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS), 17th edition. CMOS 17 is the authoritative reference work on documentation practices and citation formatting and is the official manual of style for academic research papers at the University of Saint Mary of the Lake.


The Purdue Owl is an excellent resource to assist you in creating a thesis statement, organizing a research paper, understanding plagiarism, and assembling bibliographic citations.

Duke Divinity School provides in-depth resources and guides for general and theological writing support on their Writing Resources web page. 

The following English pronunciation video resources are provided both for individual learning and instructor-guided learning. The aim is to improve one’s confidence, clarity, and effectiveness in oral communication and articulation in English.

How to Pronounce -er Endings: American English

How to Pronounce the American R Sound: American R

Mango Languages online learning system provides conversational and grammar instruction to 68 languages, including New Testament Greek, Biblical Hebrew, and Religious and Scholarly Latin. Users are able to set up an account to track progress through course lessons. Mango Languages also offers a free mobile app, which can be downloaded through the Google Play store and the Apple app store. See the full list of language courses offered below: 


 A free resource to help you organize class notes, clip notes from websites, and outline your research paper sources.

 A free resource to help you organize class notes, clip notes from websites, and outline your research paper sources.

A free citation management system that will keep track of your sources and provide assistance with formatting bibliographies. Review the Quick Start Guide to get started. 

A reference management and social collaboration tool. Check out the Mendeley Overview to get started. 

A tool for organizing your citations and for creating bibliographies using a combination of different fields to search. Create your free account today.