William and Mary

Writing Requirements

1. Lower-Division Writing Requirement (Pre-Major): All students must satisfactorily complete with a grade of C- or better, by the end of their fourth semester and normally during their first year at the College, a one-semester course in writing--either a freshman seminar designated with a "W" or Writing 101. The only exemptions to this requirement are through AP, IB or transfer credit. Beginning Fall 2015, the Pre-Major Writing Requirement will be fulfilled by COLL 150.

2. Major Writing Requirement: In addition, all students must satisfy the Major Writing Requirement described by each department, program or school. Students must satisfy the lower-division writing proficiency requirement before attempting the Major Writing Requirement. If the department, program or school specifies a graded course or courses to satisfy the requirement, the student's grade(s) in that course or those courses must be C- or better.

The purpose of the Major Writing Requirement is to ensure that students continue to develop their ability to write in clear, effective prose, which contains sustained and well-developed thought. The Major Writing Requirement must provide students with a series of opportunities to practice their writing, especially as commented upon by an instructor. Each student is expected to complete the writing requirement before the beginning of the graduating semester, normally during the junior and senior years; where the requirement may be met through a Major Honors paper, a senior paper, or the like, it may be completed as late as the end of the graduating semester. When a student has a double major, the requirement applies in each major.