First-Year Writing Program Policies

Criteria for Evaluation of Writing in English 100, 101, and 202.

Assignments in ENG 100, 101, and 202 are designed to develop students’ understanding of, and facility with, practices of critical reading and writing in academic communities. In evaluating students’ formal written work, instructors look for a purposeful response to the audience and situation, a clear and logical argument, thoughtful use of textual evidence, and effective use of appropriate formal and stylistic conventions. These criteria are based on the ENG 100 and 101 course objectives, which support NC State’s General Education Program for Writing, Speaking, and Information Literacy, and are grounded in the Outcomes for First-Year Composition adopted by the Council of Writing Program Administrators in 2000.

Successful writing in ENG 100 and 101 demonstrates critical thinking and rhetorical awareness in the areas described below. Instructors adapt these general criteria to the specifics of individual assignments when developing peer review guidelines, grading rubrics, and other course materials.

Rhetorical Purpose

Effective writing exhibits clear awareness of the purpose, audience, and occasion for writing and responds to that rhetorical situation through appropriate choice of topic, genre, focus, and claim.

Writing can accomplish a wide range of purposes, and written texts vary accordingly. Even within the domain of academic writing, the descriptive claim of an argument summary differs substantially from the evaluative claim of a critique, the interpretive claim of a literary analysis, or the informative claim of an experimental report. Students engaged in these varied types of writing must accommodate the rhetorical expectations of their intended audiences if they want to be heard by those audiences.

Logic and Argument

Effective writing makes a claim distinct from the claims of its source material and develops that claim thoroughly and logically.

With the exception of basic summary assignments, academic writing tasks call for original and well supported argument. Effective arguments present a sufficient, reliable, and coherent body of evidence from text and/or non-text sources. Governed by a central controlling idea, strong writing allows the reader to easily follow the reasoning that supports the central claim and that links evidence to that claim.

Textual Evidence

When drawing on previous scholarship, effective writing demonstrates thoughtful response to the ideas of others, including judicious selection of sources, a well-founded understanding of those sources, and substantive integration of ideas and evidence from the sources into the writer’s argument.

In assignments that ask writers to build on prior research, successful academic writing relies on an accurate and intelligent reading of source materials and an appropriate assessment of the value and relevance of those sources for the rhetorical purpose. Effective writing represents source materials fairly; summarizes, paraphrases, and quotes accurately; and makes clear conceptual connections between the textual evidence and the writer’s own claims.

Formal and Stylistic Conventions

Successful writing demonstrates effective use of genre and disciplinary conventions, including appropriate format, style, tone, documentation, and grammatical integration of evidence, and demonstrates facility with surface features, including syntax, grammar, punctuation, and spelling, so that the reader’s experience with the text is uninterrupted.

Successful writing demonstrates an understanding of what readers in a given academic or public community will expect in the choice of genre, style, tone, documentation, and grammatical conventions. Effective academic writing specifically requires strong technical handling of source material, including attribution, grammatical integration, and proper citation. Both academic and public audiences expect writing to follow the conventions of formal written English.

First-Year Writing Council

Course Policies

Absence Policy

All courses in the First-Year Writing Program (ENG 100, 101, and 202) follow the same absence policy. Because of the collaborative and cooperative nature of these courses, class attendance is crucial. During the regular semester, students who accrue more than two weeks' worth of absences as defined by the learning environment will fail with a grade of F.

More than two weeks' worth of absences will result in failure to meet the Introduction to Writing component of the General Education Requirement, and students will need to repeat the course.

For the purposes of accrual, this policy does not distinguish between "excused" and "unexcused" absences, even in the case of emergencies. All absences count toward the total number, and this policy begins as soon as students are registered in the course. Students experiencing extended medical or family emergencies during the semester should consult with the instructor about seeking a medical drop.

While all absences count toward the absence limit, students will be allowed to make up missed coursework in accordance with the university’s excused absence policy. Instructors will establish make-up assignments, standards for evaluation for these assignments, and a reasonable period after the absence within which they must be turned in. Student grades may be affected if students fail to turn in make-up assignments or if the make-up assignments are of insufficient quality. 

Students are responsible for catching up on all missed work. Due dates for major assignments are established at the beginning of the semester and absence from class does not affect these due dates or potential late assignment penalties. 

Learning Environments and Absences 
First-Year Writing Courses will be offered in three learning environments in Fall 2021: Face-to-face, Hybrid, and Online Asynchronous. See this page for descriptions of each format. The Absence Policy applies to all First-Year Writing courses, regardless of format. 

Face-to-Face Courses 
Students in face-to-face courses (i.e., "seated" or "in-person" courses) are expected to attend regularly scheduled course meetings on campus, in-person, during which attendance will be taken. Students should consult course materials and their instructor for additional details. 

Hybrid Courses
Students in hybrid courses are expected to attend classes on campus, in-person, during regularly scheduled times and to complete and submit classwork online synchronously or asynchronously to fulfill instructors' attendance expectations. Students should consult course materials and their instructor for additional details. 

Online Asynchronous Courses
Students in online asynchronous courses are not expected to attend regularly scheduled class meetings, though instructors may offer optional synchronous meeting times. Students will complete and submit assignments to fulfill instructors' attendance expectations. Students should consult course materials and their instructor for additional details. 

Academic Integrity

Plagiarism is defined as copying the language, phrasing, structure, or specific ideas of others and presenting any of these as one's own, original work; it includes buying papers, having someone else write your papers, and improper citation and use of sources. When you present the words or ideas of another (either published or unpublished) in your writing, you must fully acknowledge your sources. Plagiarism is considered a violation of academic integrity whenever it occurs in written work, including drafts and homework, as well as for formal and final papers.

Revealing or sharing another student's course work to which he or she may have access as a member of the class is considered a form of academic dishonesty prohibited by the Code of Student Conduct. As a condition for enrollment in this class, students may only share another student's course work with third parties after obtaining the express consent of the student author and the course instructor. 'Sharing with third parties' includes posting or causing the course work to be posted on social-networking or other websites. Violations of this condition will be reported to the Office of Student Conduct, which may take further action.

The NCSU Code of Student Conduct sets the standards for academic integrity at this university and in this course. Students are expected to adhere to these standards. Plagiarism and other forms of academic dishonesty will be handled through the university's judicial system and may result in failure for the project or for the course.

Instructors may ask students to sign the Academic Integrity Pledge below:

Downloadable version of the Academic Integrity Pledge.

Policy on Honors Credit

The First-Year Writing Program does not offer special Honors versions of ENG 101 or participate in Student-Initiated Honors Contracts. Honors enhancements typically involve the addition of independent research and writing. Because writing and research form the core of ENG 101 and the expectations in those areas are already quite extensive, this course is not an appropriate place for honors enrichment. ENG 101 is designed as an introduction to college-level discourse for all students entering the university community.

(Posted 2-9-07)

Audit Policy

Permission to audit first-year writing courses is provided only in exceptional circumstances.

Any student who wishes to audit a course offered by the First-Year Writing Program, including ENG 100, 101, or 202, must obtain approval from the Director of First-Year Writing prior to the first day of any term in which the student is seeking to audit a course. 

Additionally, students seeking to audit ENG 100, 101, or 202 should be aware of NC State’s Policies, Rules, and Regulations on auditing courses (REG 02.20.04), which state, in part, that “the degree to which an auditor must participate in class beyond regular attendance is optional with the teacher; any such requirements should be clearly explained in writing to the auditor at the beginning of the semester.” As such, a contractual agreement that establishes clear expectations for the auditor’s participation / class involvement must be signed by the course instructor and the prospective auditor prior to the first day of any term in which the student is seeking to audit a course.

Note that degree-seeking students at NC State must earn a grade of C- or better in ENG 101 (and ENG 202 for appropriate transfer students) in order to satisfy the Introduction to Writing component of the University’s General Education Program (GEP).

Credit earned by audit may not be used to satisfy the Introduction to Writing component of the GEP.

First-Year Writing Council (10-0)

Maintaining Class Enrollment Caps

The First-Year Writing Program is invested in a high-quality experience for all of its students.  Because this experience is heavily dependent on class size, it is the policy of the First-Year Writing Program not to override the number of available seats offered, as specified in the Schedule of Courses, in any section of our courses (ENG 100, ENG 101, and ENG 202).

Inquiries concerning this policy should be addressed to the Director of the First-Year Writing Program, not to individual course instructors.

First-Year Writing Council (9-0)

Permission to Conduct Research

The First-Year Writing Program at NC State recognizes the importance of research on the teaching of writing. All researchers, including faculty, staff, and students, on- and off-campus, regardless of funding support, must secure Program permission before soliciting participants and beginning data collection. Please see our full policy here which outlines the process and criteria for human-subjects reasearch and research exempt from Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval. 

First-Year Writing Program Council (9-0)