Writing at Brown

To earn the baccalaureate degree, all Brown students must demonstrate an ability to write well. Why? Good writing is essential to learning. Across the disciplines, scholars, teachers, and students write to explore ideas, uncover nuances of thought, and advance knowledge. Writing is not only a medium through which we communicate and persuade; it is also a means for expanding our capacities to think clearly.

Learning to write well is a developmental process that occurs over time. For this reason, all students must work on their writing at least twice: once during the first half of their college experience, and once during the second half. Students meet the first half of this requirement in their first four semesters by completing an approved writing course at Brown. (Transfer students may meet this part of the requirement with an approved course at their prior institution.) Reflection is an important part of your development as a writer, so we also ask that you go into ASK to verify completion of this part of the writing requirement.

In semesters 5 through 7, students work on their writing a second time, by taking another approved Brown course or by documenting that they have worked on their writing in another Brown course. The final step is to go into ASK to verify completion of the requirement and to reflect on your development as a writer.

Please note that the requirement as it is laid out here is a minimum expectation. Our hope is that you will work on your writing throughout your four years at Brown. By embracing this responsibility, you will become a stronger writer and thinker, thus fulfilling a critical aspect of your liberal education.