Writing Intensive FAQ

How do I certify my course?

You can read about the certification process here.

How is a WI course linked to disciplinary writing?

Of course, disciplines have their own writing conventions. While this is apparent to faculty, this distinction can be less clear to students, who often learn one style of writing and try to make this model fit all academic situations. Part of the overall WI course goal is to model the characteristics and conventions of writing in fields or disciplines.

How does WI fit into the student’s overall writing experience at Drexel?

While students get a strong foundation for writing in Drexel’s excellent First-Year Writing Program, these writing skills must be reinforced throughout a student’s college career in order to continue to develop and remain viable. In addition, while FWP faculty may be experts on teaching writing, they are not necessarily experts on disciplinary writing. You are part of a process that began for your students during their first year and will continue until they graduate writing as experts in your field.

How do I use writing to teach my subject effectively?

We believe in the guiding philosophy of writing across the curriculum: writing to learn. Students learn most effectively when they are writing in a course, and by incorporating writing into your course, you are not only helping them improve their writing, but you are also helping them to become better learners in your course.

How do I grade and evaluate student writing?

The Faculty Fellows who work for Drexel’s Writing Across the Curriculum Program [lin] can help you find smart, effective ways to manage the student writing in your WI course or your other courses. One key thing to remember is this: Remember your purpose in assigning writing to your students, and then evaluate your students with that purpose in mind. If you are interested in talking with a Faculty Fellow, please contact Dr. Scott Warnock, Director of Writing Across the Curriculum, at

Who are Peer Readers?

Peer Readers are Drexel undergraduate student tutors. To become tutors, they first have to be recommended by a faculty member for the three-credit course WRIT 210 [course name], which provides them with the practical and theoretical training to help other students with their writing. After successfully completing WRIT 210, they are then interviewed by the DWC administration. Peer Readers engage in intensive, continuing training and professional development throughout their employment in the Writing Center.

Peer Readers come from various majors and disciplines, and they help to offer discipline-specific expertise to students. Readers are trained to help students throughout the writing process, from understanding the assignment to brainstorming and using proper citations. When necessary, they help students with basic research methodologies, and refer them to subject-specific librarians for additional research help. However, it is important to understand that Peer Readers are not editors or proofreaders. They collaborate and dialogue with writers; they do not read over a document and tell the reader what is “wrong” or correct mistakes on their own.

How do writing portfolios fit into all of this?

Writing portfolios are pedagogical tools that encourage reflection and analysis. They serve as a way for students to store and easily review documents and other artifacts, and they allow students to demonstrate their writing proficiency and development via a reflective analysis. Having students use portfolios and having them write a reflective analysis that reviews the writing they did in your course will not only help their writing development, but it may also serve as a way for us to assess the overall writing experience at Drexel.

All students open an electronic Drexel Writing Portfolio in ENG 101, and continue to use the portfolio to collect and reflect on their writing through ENG 103, the end of the freshman writing sequence.