What To Do If You're Worried About Passing the Writing Requirement
FIRST OF ALL, DON'T PANIC
We've found that if students discuss their writing requirement problems with their academic advisors while planning each semester's courses (or the Chair of the Rhetoric & Composition Department if the advisor is uncertain of how to handle a problem), they can work out ways to satisfy the requirement.
Remember: writing proficiency is a graduation requirement. You have all four years to fulfill it--which is not to say that it can be easily ignored until your final semester, so. . . .
SECOND OF ALL, DON'T PROCRASTINATE!
Most Arts & Sciences students take a First-Year Seminar in their first semester, all of which can fulfill half of the writing requirement. If you're planning to fulfill the requirement by taking two Writing Certification courses, a good rule of thumb is that it's wise to have earned Writing Certification credit in at least one course by the end of your first year. Please note, however, that it is not enough to simply take a WR or WRi course; the professor must judge that your work meets the Criteria for Writing Proficiency.
To avoid getting tripped up by the fine print of the requirement. . . .
DON'T FORGET THAT IF YOU'RE TAKING COURSES FOR WRITING CERTIFICATION, YOU NEED TO TAKE TWO AND THEY NEED TO BE IN DIFFERENT DEPARTMENTS.
Sometimes students fail to notice that we want them to prove a certain amount of rhetorical flexibility. So getting Writing Certification in five courses that are all in your major doesn't mean you've passed the requirement.
You can fulfillthe Writing Requirement at Oberlin in other ways too.
AP credit, transfer credit, and Private Reading, Winter Term, or Honors projects. If you're uncertain how they might apply to your case after reading about them on-line, make an appointment to talk to the Chair of the Rhetoric & Composition Department.