The ability to express arguments and ideas clearly is essential in most professional endeavors. Courses that satisfy requirements in the writing category should teach students to identify an issue amid different and conflicting points of view in what they read; frame and sustain an argument that not only includes both the analysis and exposition of information but also establishes what is at stake in accepting their views; provide relevant evidence to support their point of view; and identify and analyze potential counterarguments.
All Notre Dame undergraduates must take two writing-intensive courses as part of the core curriculum.
Writing and Rhetoric must also be taken in the first year. However, students who test out of Writing and Rhetoric (with a 4 or 5 on the AP English Language and Composition exam) have the option of either taking a second University Seminar or another specially designated writing-intensive course. The latter could be a core course, a major course, or an elective, and does not have to be taken in the first year. This second writing-intensive course may simultaneously fulfill another Way of Knowing in the core curriculum or a requirement of a student’s major.
Writing specialists will work closely with the colleges and schools to further develop appropriate writing-intensive courses for their respective majors, from engineering and physics to finance and classics.
A faculty committee is currently working to draft specific learning goals for this requirement, and those will be posted here once approved by the University's Core Curriculum Committee.