The First Year Writing Program
Students begin their coursework at Queens College by taking a two-semester sequence that teaches them how to enter a scholarly conversation in writing. College Writing 1 (CW1) is taught only in the English Department, and College Writing 2 (CW2) is offered in departments across the college.
College Writing 1 (CW1): English 110
The primary goal of English 110 is to help students develop the research skills and rhetorical conventions they need to write well in all of their courses. Unlike the rest of the English Department's offerings, English 110 does not focus primarily on literary study, because it aims to prepare first-year students for every major they choose. With that goal in mind, each section of English 110 has a topic that reaches across several disciplines—for example, "Cultural Identity," "Higher Education," or "Memory"—and raises questions that spark real debate among contemporary scholars.
The enrollment in English 110 is limited to twenty students to ensure that each section works like a seminar. Modeling the practices that scholars use to share ideas across and beyond the College, English 110 teaches first-year students how to engage meaningfully in an intellectual community as they work with digital texts and environments, workshop pieces of writing, revise their work with feedback from their instructors and each other, and use the library's resources. Each section of English 110 emphasizes ten learning goals and a series of guidelines.
Most sections of English 110 are linked with a General Education course through the First Year Initiative (FYI). In FYI Communities, students travel through the curriculum together, building interdisciplinary conversations that sustain them throughout their college careers.
First-year students should fulfill the CW1 requirement in their freshman year, and they are required to fulfill it before they have taken 60 credits. Transfer students may only be exempted from the requirement if they have taken a similar course that is worth the same number of credits; test scores do not provide grounds for exemption.
See Academic Advising for more information.
College Writing 2 (CW2)
After the interdisciplinary work they do in English 110, first-year students take a second writing course in a discipline of their choice. They are encouraged to take a course that satisfies the College Writing 2 (CW2) requirement in the same discipline as their major to build the rhetorical skills they will need most. An English major might take ENGL 130 as their CW2 course, for example, while a Sociology major might take SOC 190.
The College is currently expanding its list of courses that satisfy the CW2 requirement, and it offers a different schedule of those courses every semester.