Writing Intensive


There are different WI requirements for University Program (UP) courses and courses in the majors (see Appendix C of the Curriculum Authority Document, Central Michigan University, 2015). However, both types of courses must include at least 18 pages of writing OR must base 70% of the course grade on an evaluation of student writing. In addition, students must receive feedback from the instructor on some of these pages before revising and resubmitting their work (3 to 5 pages for UP courses and 10 pages for courses in the majors). For all WI courses, students should demonstrate their ability to: 

  • Use writing as a tool for learning course content. 
  • Engage in a process of drafting, revising, and editing assignments that integrates feedback into a graded final product. 
  • Select, analyze, and evaluate information/data from sources.  
  • Draw valid conclusions from information.  

In addition to the above, for WI classes in the majors students will demonstrate the ability to:

  • Analyze, evaluate, and develop arguable and/or researchable theses.   
  • Use writing to engage in the inquiry methods appropriate to a discipline or profession.  
  • Use the discourse conventions of a discipline or profession (e.g., lines of argument, genre features, writing style, citation format, stance and tone). 
  • Produce finished products that communicate effectively within disciplinary contexts including additional media elements such as pictures, diagrams, tables, or charts.  

What "counts" as good writing varies by discipline. As students progress through their WI courses, the enriched experiences that they have with faculty will help them grow as readers, writers, and thinkers. The attitudes and skills that we want to teach our writers have been summarized in the Framework for Success in Post-Secondary Writing (Council of Writing Program Administrators, 2011), a tool that can be useful for talking with students about their writing.  While the additional work of teaching a WI course may feel overwhelming at first, many faculty who teach these sections report better relationships with their students as well as increased student engagement in course material.


For more information on preparing for, developing, and assessing your WI course, consider the following:  

Writing Assignments and Feedback: An Introduction


  • To see what events we may be offering related to writing intensive learning, check out our CIS Events Page
  • Schedule a time with CIS staff to discuss your WI class.


Council of Writing Program Administrators. (2011). The framework for success in post-secondary writing. Retrieved from http://wpacouncil.org/framework