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Writing Intensive Courses


A Writing-Intensive course recognizes the contribution of writing as a way of knowing and thinking about course content and provides students with multiple writing opportunities in order to deepen their thinking about such content. Therefore, Writing-Intensive courses are designed to be taught in multiple disciplines. A Writing-Intensive course links students' writing proficiency with learning about the discipline in which the course is taught, engaging in asking and answering questions in that field of study, and becoming more active participants in academic discourse.
KU Faculty: CLICK HERE to download the Approval Forms for Writing Intensive Courses


  1. Writing assignments will be an integral part of the course.
        • Students should practice forms of writing typical of the discipline in which the course is taught.
        • Writing assignments should be designed to develop and increase content knowledge.
  1. There will be a required number of papers or words, and assignments will be distributed throughout the course.
        • Students should submit at least 3500 words of formal, graded writing distributed across at least two assignments.
        • Examples of formal writing assignments may include research papers, analytical essays, position papers, theme papers, essay questions on exams, creative writing, lesson plans, lab reports, mathematical proofs, etc.
  1. There will be opportunities for revision and resubmission.
        • At least one formal assignment should be structured and sequenced so that students will be able to improve their writing skills through practice and revision.
        • Drafts may be read and critiqued by both the instructor and peers; however, the instructor should be responsible for providing the most substantive feedback.
        • Feedback and revision should involve more than just pointing out surface errors.
  1. Writing assignments will constitute a significant portion of the course grade and content. At least 50% of the course grade and content should be based on writing assignments.
  2. Informal writing assignments may be incorporated into the course work.
        • In addition to the 3500 words of formal writing, students may also complete writing assignments that are expressive, reflective, or observational in nature in order for them to offer their perceptions informally and to increase their writing practice. Blogs and chatroom contributions, such as those employed in online courses, will not be counted toward the formal writing component. Other assignments submitted to the professor in online courses may count if they meet the basic requirements listed above.
  1. There will be assignment-related instruction and evaluation of papers.
        • Instructors will provide instruction on how to write, conduct research, review, revise, and mark writing assignments. In addition, instructors will provide guidelines for the ethical use of sources and avoidance of plagiarism. For example, an instructor may teach directed lessons on research techniques or provide grading rubrics and feedback checklists.

KU Faculty: Click HERE to download the Approval Form for Writing-Intensive courses.