Now You Know

Writing honored
Friday, April 22, 2005 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 9:33 p.m. CDT, Monday, June 30, 2008

Many institutions require college students to complete writing requirements, but MU’s award-winning program is a cut above the rest. The Campus Writing Program was recently awarded the Conference on College Composition and Communication’s first writing program Certificate of Excellence. Ten other institutions were also given the award.

“We have been recognized as a leader in the field for decades, but this award is an affirmation of that,” said Martha Patton, assistant director of the Campus Writing Program. “This award reflects on the faculty at MU — not just the program — faculty who are committed and involved in the teaching of writing.”

MU’s Campus Writing Program was developed in 1984. Patton cites its longevity as one of the aspects that distinguishes it from other institutions’ programs.

“Few writing programs have lasted as long and been as well supported as this has,” Patton said. “We had faculty buy in at the beginning.”

At MU, students are required to take not one but three courses to fulfill the writing component of graduation standards. The first course is a composition course, English 1000, through the English department.

The other two courses are through the writing program and carry a writing intensive designation. One can be taken in any subject, and the other must be an upper-level course in a student’s major.

According to the program’s Web site, the Campus Writing Board approves and designates courses as writing intensive, but individual departments determine which courses fulfill the upper-level requirement.

“Part of the underlying philosophy of the writing program is that writing is the responsibly of all faculty — not just the English department; that writing is a way of learning and that writing is an integral part of becoming a professional in any discipline,” Patton said.

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