For Students

First-Year Writing

First-Year Writing Program
English Department
Dickson Hall 468

Director: Jessica Restaino
Associate Director: Jennifer Holly-Wells
Assistant Director: Bonnie Dowd
First-Year Writing Faculty
Secretary: Phyllis Brooks & Kim Harrison

Office hours by appointment, Monday thru Thursday. 
Looking for information about the Fall 2014 Placement Assignment? Click here.
Find out more about substituting or waiving a course.

The First-Year Writing Program provides undergraduate students with coursework required to fulfill the University General Education Communication requirements in Writing and Reading. These courses introduce students to the academic discourse of the university community. The First-Year Writing Program consists of three courses: Introduction to Writing (ENWR100), College Writing I: Intellectual Prose (ENWR105), and College Writing II: Writing and Literary Study (ENWR106) with ENWR 105 and ENWR 106 being offered in traditional, studio, hybrid, and online Course Formats

The Purposes of First-Year Writing Courses

First-Year Writing courses, which collectively fulfill the general education requirements in reading and writing, ask students to write argumentative essays based on intellectual prose or literature. Our full sequence of courses (ENWR 100, 105, and 106) are concerned with the kind of intellectual inquiry that drives learning in school, work, and everyday life. The writing students do in the first-year program is meant to sustain and continue their development as writers for the length of their college careers and beyond.

Introduction to College Writing (ENWR 100)

Introduction to Writing serves to initiate students into the writing processes that enable most students to produce clear, meaningful, and intellectually valuable prose. The course is a writing-intensive workshop that stresses the development of thinking and writing abilities through frequent writing assignments that engage freewriting, brainstorming, receiving and giving feedback to peers, revising through writing multiple drafts, and editing. While Introduction to College Writing may be taken as an elective, it is required for those students whose performance during the First-Year Writing placement process indicates the need for intensive writing instruction before taking College Writing I. Student writing will be prompted by a range of texts selected by the instructor and, in lieu of a final exam, students will complete a portfolio of revised writing. The central goal of ENWR 100, “Introduction to Writing,” is to help students to become effective writers of intellectual arguments. Note that the Introduction to Writing does not satisfy the Communication Requirement in Writing. Class size: 15.

College Writing I: Intellectual Prose (ENWR 105)

This course is a writing-intensive workshop designed to develop thinking and writing abilities through frequent writing assignments based on critical response to intellectually challenging questions. We emphasize the writing process: prewriting, drafting, revising, using peer and teacher critique, editing, and proofreading. The course requires four essays, each of which undergoes a series of drafts and revisions, and at least one of which includes external research beyond assigned course readings. In lieu of a final exam, students complete a portfolio of revised writing. The central goal of ENWR 105, “College Writing I,” is not just to help students to become effective writers of intellectual arguments, but to also provide them with the critical thinking and research skills that are instrumental to a successful university education. Combined with ENWR106, College Writing I meets Gen Ed 2002-Communication Requirement in Writing/Literature. Also Meets the 1983 General Education Requirement (GER)-Communication in Writing. Class size: 19.

College Writing II: Writing and Literary Study (ENWR 106)

College Writing II builds on the basic writing strategies taught in College Writing I and extends the goal of helping students to become effective writers of intellectual arguments in response to literary works of fiction, poetry and drama. Students continue to practice and develop as writers, but the focus in this course is on reading and interpreting literary texts. A minimum of 6000 words of formal writing, including at least one documented essay that engages students in their own process of academic research, is required. The central goal of ENWR 106, College Writing II is to help students expand upon their critical thinking and writing skills and build an appreciation of complex literary texts. 

All students in the First-Year Writing courses can expect rigorous enforcement of the University's policy against academic dishonesty and plagiarism particularly.  The Student Handbook defines plagiarism, but students can and should seek further explanation of the University's Academic Dishonesty Policy, the First-Year Writing Program's page on Academic Integrity and Plagiarism, and from instructors and/or the staff of the Center for Writing Excellence.  Students who are caught plagiarizing can expect to fail the course and face disciplinary action.

What ENWR Course Format is best for me?

Take a look at the Course Formats for more detailed descriptions of traditional, studio, hybrid, and online course formats.