The core writing curriculum at Mason offers students a unique opportunity to develop writing competencies across their educational experience that prepares them to participate in academic, professional, and civic communities. It does so in part by providing students with a “vertical” writing curriculum: a carefully sequenced series of courses designed to facilitate the long-term growth of writers as they develop expertise in the production and circulation of knowledge across a range of contexts and audiences. This curriculum grows out of research demonstrating that people continue to develop as writers throughout their lives and, therefore, that writing instruction should be continuous throughout students’ education.
At Mason, our vertical writing curriculum is realized through specially designated Composition and Writing-intensive (WI) courses that seek to integrate rhetorical and field-specific knowledge and skills.
There are several ways to waive the required composition courses. Students may apply for a waiver for ENGH 101 through a three-hour proficiency examination offered at various times throughout the semester. Students with appropriate AP or IB scores, or equivalent transfer credits, may also be eligible for a waiver for ENGH 101. Students can apply for a waiver for ENGH 302 by presenting a portfolio of their academic writing through a specific procedure. See Waivers tab for more information.