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First-Year Writing Requirement

The goal of the First-Year Writing Requirement (FYWR) is to prepare students to write in diverse academic contexts. As a broad preparation for the range of writing tasks students will encounter at the University of Michigan and beyond, FYWR courses emphasize evidenced, academic writing in a variety of genres and rhetorical situations. A FYWR course is foundational for students to master the kind of analysis and argumentation found in sophisticated academic writing. Information about what to expect in first-year writing courses can be found on the Sweetland Center for Writing's First-Year Writing Requirement page.

Students should complete their first-year writing course in their first three terms, and must earn a C- or higher to meet the requirement. This requirement should be satisfied before attempting a course to meet the Upper-Level Writing Requirement. Advanced Placement (AP) credit does not fulfill the FYWR.

FYWR courses offered for a particular term can be found in the LSA Course Guide by using the “Skills Req” drop-down menu and selecting “First-Year Writing (FYWR)”.

Transfer students who have completed writing courses at another college or university may be able to use those courses to satisfy the FYWR. Detailed information about the approved and non-approved courses is available through the Sweetland Center for Writing's First-Year Writing Requirement page.

Students who seek a more individualized and gradual introduction to college writing may choose to take WRITING 100: Transition to College Writing and/or WRITING 120: College Writing for Multilingual Writers through the Sweetland Center for Writing before a First-Year Writing Requirement course.

WRITING 100 is a 3-credit ungraded course designed for students who:

  • learn best with one-to-one instructor support;
  • seek more experience drafting and revising academic essays;
  • prefer a more gradual introduction to writing longer academic essays on a variety of topics; and/or
  • would benefit from an additional term to gain confidence in their writing and reading skills at the college level.

WRITING 120 is a 3-credit graded course designed for students who:

  • feel most comfortable with academic writing in a language other than English and/or
  • want an opportunity to work closely with an instructor to become better prepared for writing in English.

First-Year Writing and UWrite

UWrite is an online self-placement tool that guides students to reflect on their writing experiences and learning preferences, and helps them to select First-Year Writing Requirement courses that fit their interests and needs. UWrite appears in the task list students receive before Orientation.