Writing, Speaking, and Argument Program
Satisfying the Primary Writing Requirement
The primary writing requirement is the College's first step in drawing students into our community of researchers and writers. All students at the University of Rochester are expected to satisfy this requirement. In order to be prepared for the upper-level writing requirement in the majors, students should satisfy the Primary Writing Requirement by the end of the first year of study.
The majority of entering students fulfill the primary writing requirement by earning a C or better in Reasoning and Writing in the College, WRT 105, or WRT 105E, a version of 105 chosen by students who need more support to meet the demands of college-level writing. A small number of students may petition to substitute another University of Rochester class for WRT 105 or 105E (petition form). Transfer students may petition to use a course from another college or university (petition form). EAPP students satisfy the primary writing requirement by earning a C or better in , EAPP Critical Reading, Reasoning, and Writing, WRT 103 and EAPP Research, Reading, and Writing, WRT 104,.
Students who pass WRT 105/105E but with a grade below the "C" that is the minimum required may choose to take the course a second time for four additional credit hours, and with both grades in the GPA as long as they submit the special form to CCAS by the end of the fourth week of the semester. Alternatively, a student may apply the standard "repeat" policy.
Selecting WRT 105 or 105E: Writing Self-Placement Survey
In order to provide students with an informed sense of writing course options (WRT 105, 105E, or EAPP), incoming students are required to take Parts One and Two of the Writing Self-Placement Survey. If after completing these two parts of the survey you are still unsure about which course to choose, please continue on to Part Three of the survey, where you will have an opportunity to speak with a writing placement advisor.
You can find the Writing Self-Placement Survey at http://my.rochester.edu. Log in and find the link marked "Writing Self-Placement Survey" under "Courses" on the right-hand side of the screen. Click on that link to complete the survey.
*NOTE: Students entering through the ECO Program or the EAPP do not need to take the Writing Self-Placement Survey.
- ECO students will work with ECO Summer Writing instructors and OMSA counselors to select their writing course.
- EAPP students are automatically enrolled for the WRT 103/101 and WRT 104/102 sequence, which satisfies the Primary Writing Requirement
Students who believe that they are already proficient argumentative research writers at the college level and would like to fulfill the primary writing requirement by substituting a writing-intensive course for WRT 105/E may petition to be allowed to do so.
Please note: Petitioning does not waive the primary writing requirement. A student whose petition is approved must still complete an approved writing-intensive course in order to fulfill the primary writing requirement.
Click here to learn the criteria for satisfying the primary writing requirement with a course other than WRT 105/E.
If you believe that this applies to you and would like to fill out a petition to substitute another course for WRT 105/E, click here to obtain detailed instructions for petitioning, as well as the petition form (PDF format).
While all students—including transfer students—must satisfy the College’s primary writing requirement, many transfer students have additional options for satisfying the requirement based on coursework taken at their previous college or university. See the information below for more details.
Please note: WRT 105 and WRT 105E were formerly CAS 105 and CAS 105E.
1) If you have taken a writing course at a previous college or university, you may petition for that course to fulfill the primary writing requirement at the University of Rochester.
For a course taken at a previous institution to satisfy the University of Rochester’s primary writing requirement, it must be equivalent to WRT 105, which stresses argumentative, research-based writing and culminates in a focused 8-10 page argumentative research paper. A course description and syllabus are required to demonstrate equivalency, and the student must have earned a B or better in order to fulfill the primary writing requirement.
If a writing course from another college or university is not equivalent to WRT 105 (for example, it does not require research, or does not emphasize argumentative writing), we may request additional writing samples from the student to demonstrate competency in the required writing skills.
Click here to obtain the petition form to satisfy the primary writing requirement with coursework from another college or university.
2) If you have NOT taken a writing course at a previous college or university, you may fulfill the primary writing requirement by earning a C or better in Reasoning and Writing in the College, WRT 105, or WRT 105E. You may also petition to substitute another University of Rochester course for WRT 105 or 105E (petition form).