Among the core competencies called for by gtPathways is Competency in Written Communication. As stated by the Colorado Commission for Higher Education, the responsibility for written competency belongs not only to writing courses taught by writing professionals but to all courses since “written communication competency is developed as students apply this knowledge across the curriculum.”
Meeting not just the letter of this philosophy but the spirit of it as well, CSU began integrating writing as 25% of the grade in AUCC courses (in Categories 3B, C, D and E of the core) starting in the fall of 2007. There are two goals for writing assignments in these courses:
- to improve students’ comprehension of course content
- to improve students’ proficiency in writing.
These goals will be supported by the following writing requirements:
- At least one writing assignment must be an out-of-class piece of written work.
- In-class written work, such as on exams, must be in the form of essays.
In addition to these minimum requirements, students may be asked to write more than one out-of-class assignment and may also be expected to revise writing assignments after receiving feedback from peers and instructors.
Expectations for student writing will be clarified in the syllabus but can be expected to include the following*:
- The ability to convey a theme or argument clearly and coherently
- The ability to analyze critically and to synthesize the work of others
- The ability to acquire and apply information from appropriate sources, and reference sources appropriately
- Competence in standard written English
*Instructors will use their discretion in determining the relative importance of these various expectations in their writing assignments and how they will be graded.
Finally, writers at CSU are expected to do their own work. Sources, if used, must be acknowledged according to citation practices established within the course. Plagiarism is a form of academic dishonesty. As university policy states, “Any student found responsible for having engaged in academic dishonesty will be subject to an academic penalty and/or University disciplinary action.”