English General Education Requirements

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Writing Requirement

First-Year Writing (ENGW 103/104) equips students to grow as writers in the Wheaton College classroom and beyond. The course is designed to prepare students to write effectively in a variety of contexts and to improve student learning and performance in many other areas of their undergraduate education. Since the course introduces students to ideas and practices that are central to a liberal arts education, students should fulfill this requirement during the freshman year. Students are also encouraged to take additional writing courses beyond the general education requirement. Successful completion of the requirement is a prerequisite for enrollment in any upper division writing course.

Meeting the Writing Requirement

You may satisfy the writing requirement by taking ENGW 103 (4 hours) and earning a grade of C or higher. You may satisfy the writing requirement by taking ENGW 104 (2 hours) and earning a grade of C or higher if:

  1. You score a 3 on the LANGUAGE/Composition Advance Placement exam.
  2. You score a 10, 11, or 12 on an ACT Writing Test taken before September 2015.
  3. Your ELA score (an average of your English, Reading, and Writing scores) is 32 or higher on an ACT exam taken on or after September 1, 2015.
  4. You score a 10, 11, or 12 on an SAT Essay Exam taken before March 2016.
  5. You score a minimum of 6 on each category (reading, analysis, and writing) of the SAT Essay Exam taken on or after March 1, 2016.

Options to Waive the Requirement with Academic Credit

  1. If you score a 4 or 5 on the LANGUAGE/Composition Advanced Placement exam, you earn 4 semester hours of writing credit and have completed the writing requirement.
  2. If you score a 3 on the LANGUAGE/Composition Advanced Placement exam, you earn 2 semester hours of writing credit. You may complete the 4-hour requirement by taking ENGW 104 (2 hours) or passing the Writing Competency Exam ($30 charge for the exam) that is given each semester to freshmen or transfers only during their first year at Wheaton. No academic credit is given for passing the exam.

Option to Waive the Requirement without Academic Credit

The Writing Competency Exam is given each semester (on a date to be announced through email) and is open only to freshmen and transfer students. Students have one opportunity to take the exam in the fall or spring of their first year at Wheaton. The cost of the exam is $30.

If students do not qualify to waive the requirement, they will be placed in ENGW 103 or ENGW 104 based on their score. Students who have not taken the exam during their first year at Wheaton MUST take either ENGW 103 or ENGW 104, based on previous test scores (see “meeting the writing requirement” above). No advanced standing credit will be awarded to students taking ENGW 104.


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