Core Curriculum

Foundations Written Communication

Written Communication Competency Definition

Viterbo students will communicate effectively in writing, shaping their writing in relation to subject, purpose, medium, context, and intended audience.

Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  1. Align the writing task with audience, purpose, and context. (Context of and Purpose for Writing)
  2. Use appropriate, relevant, and compelling content to support a thesis and unify the work. (Content Development)
  3. Consistently apply disciplinary conventions, including organization, content, presentation, and style. (Genre and Disciplinary Conventions)
  4. Consistently support claims with credible, relevant, and appropriate sources. (Sources and Evidence)
  5. Communicate in direct, error-free language. (Control of Syntax and Mechanics)

Ways to Fulfill Competencies

Students will demonstrate that they have achieved this competency within their first two years. This competency may be satisfied in multiple ways. The primary path is placement in ENGL105, Accelerated Composition, followed by a sophomore-year writing course. The ACT English score is the primary indicator for placement into the first-year composition course. Alternative placement indicators include a placement portfolio and appropriate scores on AP, CLEP, or IB.

1. Placement Criteria for First Year Composition:
23-36 on ACT English ⇒ ENGL 105
18-22 on ACT English ⇒ ENGL 103-104
Below 18 on ACT English ⇒ ENGL 099
Honors Program ⇒ ENGL 195

Academic Advising page on Math and English placement

2. Sophomore-level Writing Course
Description: Students demonstrate the written communication foundational competency in a sophomore-level writing course in which students engage in writing as a systematic, iterative process and as a means for inquiry, learning, thinking, and communicating.

Guidelines for Courses:

  1. Courses will ask students to write at least 20 total pages, including at least two arguments with sources. 
  2. The course design will emphasize the writing process, providing students with opportunities to generate drafts, respond to feedback, revise, edit, and proofread.
  3. Courses build on the learning outcomes of English 105 and prepare students to write independently.
  4. Every CCC-approved sophomore-level writing course will identify a writing assignment that will demonstrate that students have achieved the apprentice level of written communication outcomes.


Possible Models:
ENGL department sophomore-level course (3 cr.) course

  1. Existing, required course within the department that would include writing process (about one-third of a 3-credit course).
  2. Existing, required course within the department that would add a credit of writing process (3 → 4 credits). 
  3. Existing, required course within the department paired with a 1-credit writing lab: these linked courses would be predicated upon a partnership between the faculty.
  4. An additional possibility includes a cluster of courses (Humanities, Sciences, etc.) which would be linked to a set of writing labs.

These courses have been granted provisional status as meeting the WC2 requirement:
AADM300 (WC status deleted 3.2012); ARTS470, 471; BIO251; CRMJ265; EDUC215 (WC status deleted 3.2012), 255 (WC status deleted 5.2012); ENGL255, 307; MGMT300; MUSC327 (WC status deleted 3.2012), 328; MUTH338; SOCL265; SOWK240; SPAN340 (WC status deleted 3.2012); THTR281, 300 (WC status deleted 12.2012); UNST295

Current catalog list of LIVE courses

Expected Levels

Using the Core Curriculum Written Communication rubric, instructors should target achievement level 2 in ENGL 104, 105, and 195. Students completing the sophomore-level writing course should achieve level 3.

PDF iconWritten Communication VALUE rubric from AAC&U