In writing enhanced (WE) courses professors will incorporate writing that helps students learn course content as well as improve their communication skills. They will have the opportunity to work with Dyson writing consultants to develop effective assignments that include criteria for writing, build in revision, and use evaluation techniques, such as rubrics or checklists. Workshops will be held one semester before the course begins, or during the first week of classes, and at the midpoint, so that professors may learn new strategies and share some best practices.
1. A substantial amount of writing will be required for the course, not including exams- combining formal and informal writing assignments, such as 3 stages of one large research project, 3 separate essays, brief summaries and other writing activities
2. Instructors will give detailed written handouts for each writing assignment and specify writing criteria.
3. A cap of 30 students will be approved for WE designated courses.
4. Students will have the opportunity to receive feedback on at least one assignment before it is graded—through a conference, in-class workshop (i.e., reviewing a student paper, possibly from a previous class, as a model), peer review, tutoring session and/or revision opportunity.
5. The quality of the writing must be considered in the grading process. (Does the paper make a point supported by a clear focus and good organization, adequate development, and careful editing?) If possible a writing rubric or checklist will be developed to assist in evaluating writing assignments.
Model Statement for WE Course Syllabus
This is a writing-enhanced course that requires an effective amount of writing, in addition to exams, to help students learn course content. Formal writing elements, such as clear focus, good organization, development, and editing are considered in grading, as well as content. Students will receive detailed written handouts for each writing assignment, specifying criteria and clearly setting forth expectations. Students will receive feedback for revision on at least one writing assignment before it is graded. The writing in final drafts will be evaluated, along with content, based on evaluative criteria from a checklist or rubric.