The General Education writing requirement at Pittsburg State University consists of a sequence of four courses: two required courses taught by the English Department (ENGL 101 and ENGL 299) and two courses chosen from the menu of courses designated Writing to Learn (WL). This sequence is designed to allow students to take one writing or writing-intensive course each semester of their first two years in order to prepare effectively for the more demanding, discipline-specific writing students will encounter in their upper-division coursework.
ENGL 101 English Composition is the foundational course in college-level writing. In this course, students will be challenged to develop a higher level of academic literacy through reading and responding to challenging texts and developing written works with that explore the complex connections between assigned texts, students' own experience, and the larger world. ENGL 101 is designed for incoming students with no prior college writing experience.
Writing to Learn courses are writing-intensive courses offered in a wide variety of departments and subject areas. In addition to teaching course content, Writing to Learn courses are designed to enhance students' ability to formulate and articulate complex ideas and to convey those ideas in writing to a professional and/or academic audience. The amount of writing varies by course, but most WL courses are designed to require at least 15 pages of polished, finished draft (usually in the forms of multiple short pages), along with informal writing done in class or in online discussion forums. Many WL courses also fulfill other general education requirements or requirements for specific degree programs.
ENGL 299 Introduction to Research Writing is the capstone of the general education writing sequence. It is designed to extend students' academic literacy by reinforcing and extending students' skills in writing from sources using academic, scholarly, and professional texts for independent research. Introduction to Research Writing serves as preparation for upper-division coursework and is intended to be taken when student have completed approximately 45 hours of college credit and have completed two Writing to Learn courses.
The flow chart below shows the normal progression through the WL series. ENGL 101 English Composition should be considered a prerequisite for the Writing to Learn courses. ENGL 101 English Composition and two Writing to Learn courses are a prerequisite for ENGL 299 Introduction to Research Writing.
Four Possible Writing to Learn Sequences
English Comp. 101------------WL------------WL------------English 299
English ACT of 27------------WL------------WL-------------English 299
English ACT of 28 or higher-------WL------English Comp. 190-----WL
*(Transfer Students with Fewer than 55 Credit Hours Only)
Two Composition courses elsewhere--------------WL---------------WL
*Students who transfer to PSU with fewer than 55 credit hours but
who have completed two composition courses will take two WL courses.
They will not take English 299.
Students enrolled in ENGL 101, WL, and ENGL 299 are encouraged to use the services provided by the Writing Center. The Writing Center at Pittsburg State University is a free service offered by the University for students, faculty, and staff. The Writing Center offers face-to-face and online consultations at any stage of the writing process for any type of writing, as well as workshops for students and faculty. The Writing Center is located in 111D Axe Library and online at http://www.pittstate.edu/office/writing_center/. Appointments can be made online (http://pittstate.mywconline.com/index.php) or in person. Hours are 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday during Fall and Spring semesters. See the website for Summer hours.
The Writing Center regularly employs graduate and undergraduate students from any major who have demonstrated success with academic or workplace writing.
For more information about the WL program or the Writing Center's services or employment, contact Don Judd at djudd AT pittstate DOT edu (620-235-4697) or Janet Zepernick at jzeperni AT pittstate DOT edu (620-235-6539).