Writing Center

FAQs about Exceptions to the Writing Requirement

  1. I transferred in as a sophomore, but I took Writing 121, 122, and 124 at Chemeketa Community College. May I petition to have an additional writing-centered credit?
  2. I transferred in as a junior, and I took Writing 121, 122, and 124 at Chemeketa Community College. May I petition to have two writing-centered credits?
  3. I did a lot of writing in Politics 273. May I get a W credit for that course?
  4. Can I get writing-centered credit for a study-abroad course?
  5. Can I get writing-centered credit for a 4 or 5 on the AP writing test?
  6. I'm a double major and I have an irresolvable conflict between two required courses. I will have to do an independent study for my senior project-the only W course in one of my majors. Can I petition to have my independent study count as writing-centered?

  7. Who reads my petition?
  8. Can I get advice on my petition?

1. I transferred in as a sophomore, but I took Writing 121, 122, and 124 at Chemeketa Community College. May I petition to have an additional writing-centered credit?

No. Students who enter with less than junior standing must take 3 writing-centered courses.

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2. I transferred in as a junior, and I took Writing 121, 122, and 124 at Chemeketa Community College. May I petition to have two writing-centered credits?

Sort of. You have already gotten one credit to replace the first-year seminar. You may apply for "one additional writing-centered course" as well. You need to do that your first semester here!

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3. I did a lot of writing in Politics 273. May I get a W credit for that course?

No. Willamette courses that are not designated W are not subject to petition. You might speak to your professor about why she or he has not had the course designated writing-centered.

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4. Can I get writing-centered credit for a study-abroad course?

Perhaps. It is wise to make the petition before you leave, explaining why you will need to have an exception to the writing requirement and how you expect this course to satisfy writing-centeredness. You'll need to supply a course description and a syllabus. If the syllabus does not thoroughly describe writing assignments, you will also need copies of writing assignments. Generally, this information is not available to you ahead of time, so you'll need to save syllabus, assignments, the work you did, evidence of peer response to writing, and the like while you are studying abroad. The Writing Program Advisory Committee will then return to your petition once you're back at Willamette and will examine the portfolio of materials you provide as documentation for your course. But with careful planning, you should be able to complete your writing requirement on campus.

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5. Can I get writing-centered credit for a 4 or 5 on the AP writing test?

No.

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6. I'm a double major and I have an irresolvable conflict between two required courses. I will have to do an independent study for my senior project-the only W course in one of my majors. Can I petition to have my independent study count as writing-centered?


Probably. This is exactly the sort of situation for which the petition process exists. The difficulty with independent studies, of course, is that they don't make peer response to your writing so easy. Work with your advisor to figure out a way to provide for genuine peer response. (Note: unless your roommate is a senior major in your discipline, your roommate probably isn't a peer.)

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7. Who reads my petition?

The Writing Program Advisory Committee, formed annually from faculty members representing different disciplines. The Director of the Writing Center is an ex officio member of this committee.


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8. Can I get advice on my petition?

Sure. Your advisor is important in this regard. And the Director of the Writing Center keeps posted hours in the Writing Center for just such matters.


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