writing-program

It’s hard to overstate the importance of clear and persuasive writing — either within the university or in your life outside of school. Nearly all your college courses will require you to write papers or reports. Likewise, in our information-driven age, you will be asked to participate in the digital flow of texts as producers and consumers of mediated messages; in other words, ultimately, as engaged and thoughtful readers and writers. Clarity of thought and expression — and your ability to conceptualize and communicate complex ideas with a keen sense of audience — lie at the heart of learning to write well.

In keeping with the ethos of a liberal arts education, the Writing Program offers courses that introduce first-year students to the fundamentals of academic argument and intellectual inquiry. These are offered in tandem with one-on-one tutorials and with consultations in the Writing Center.

Our Curriculum

Courses offered by the NYUAD Writing Program are opportunities to concentrate intensely on the process of writing. The development of strong writing skills throughout a student’s academic career is an important objective of an NYUAD education. The NYUAD Writing Program, like other writing programs in the GNU, takes it as a given that writing is not merely a useful skill but also a way of learning and knowing. We champion an integrated understanding of writing as a mode of inquiry and invention; as a means of communicating the results of that inquiry; and as a social and recursive activity.

Designed to meet the needs of each individual student through a blend of writing courses, tutorials, and one-on-one and consultations in the Writing Center, the Writing Program seeks to cultivate a robust culture of writing at NYUAD — from freshmen to seniors, and for students across all of the divisions.

First-Year Writing Seminar

All students at NYUAD need intellectually rigorous writing classes that introduce them to the fundamentals of academic argument. The first-year Writing Seminar, the Writing Program’s signature course, is a place for all first-year students to engage in a semester-long study of academic writing. By participating in small writing seminars students develop a shared understanding of what we, as an international academic community, value in written argumentation — despite our many linguistic and cultural differences.

The Writing Seminar is an introduction to the academic work students will be expected to master as they advance through the Core Curriculum and into their majors: scholarly inquiry, elements of academic argument (e.g., thesis, evidence, analysis, and structure), critical reading, and the writing process itself. It is a course in college-level reading, writing, and inspired critical thinking taught by an award-winning, widely published interdisciplinary faculty.

Co-Curricular Initiatives

The NYUAD Writing Program is comprised of a series of inter-linked academic components and initiatives. These include: writing program curriculum development; assessment; writing across the curriculum; inter-disciplinary university community service; the Summer Scholars Program, and the NYUAD Writing Partners Program. The Writing Program also oversees the Writing Center.

NYUAD Writing Center

The NYUAD Writing Center believes that every writer needs a reader. Located in the Library, the Writing Center is the place writers go for one-on-one consultations. These consultations are designed to aide and develop their projects at any stage of the process — from brainstorming to fine-tuning; from developing a motive and a thesis; to integrating sources ethically.

The NYUAD Writing Center offers one-on-one support for writing (in and across the disciplines), oral expression, and ELL related aspects. Students can make appointments as walk-ins or via the Writing Center website.

The Writing Center is a co-curricular initiative designed to implement the pedagogy of the Writing Program, serve the wider undergraduate student population, and is crucially positioned to serve the needs of writers across a range of disciplines. The NYUAD Writing Center helps students at any stage in the writing, articulation, and expression of their ideas. Writing consultants are experienced readers and writers who work with students in dedicated writing conferences, helping to develop strategies for revision of assignments or papers, teaching specific writing skills, or facilitating a deeper understanding about the student’s own writing process. We welcome students from any field or discipline, and work with all types of writing assignments, papers, and projects.

Writing Partners

The Writing Partners Program (WPP) was developed to facilitate a continued writing partnership between the NYUAD Writing Program and students entering the Core from the first-year Writing Seminar. The WPP consists of regular individual meetings with a Writing Instructor designed to help students articulate and implement strategies for success in the Core, or in any other class that demands writing. Topics for the semester are selected collaboratively and may include essay writing and structure, critical reading strategies, time management, and more — depending on student interest. Ultimately, students are responsible for the content and direction of the partnership, offering them the unparalleled opportunity to self-direct their progress as students and scholars over the course of each term.

The Summer Scholars Program

The Summer Scholars Program (SSP) offers specialized Writing Partnerships over the summer — from afar! SSP is an eight-week distance-learning program designed to provide continuity for students working on English language acquisition, academic writing, and critical thinking skills. SSP allows students who may be struggling with academic English to continue practicing oral and written expression over the course of the summer. Participating students set up Skype sessions with NYUAD Writing Program Instructors, design their own goals and workflow, and “meet” for regularly scheduled sessions over the course of the summer. The Program is conceived as a bridge between a student’s academic semesters, offering students a chance to stretch the work they began in one academic year across the summer months.