Writing Intensive Courses
Writing Intensive Courses. Students are required to take and complete a minimum number of Writing Intensive (WI) courses to earn a baccalaureate degree. Each semester, courses are considered for designation as WI at the request of the instructor. Courses must be recertified as WI to allow for changes in pedagogy. Information on WI courses is available in the current catalog and at the Writing Intensive webpage
Three WI courses are required for graduation from UH Hilo with the baccalaureate degree; at least one of these must be at the upper division. Transfer students may be required to take fewer, depending on the number of credits they transfer in; see the university catalog for specifics. CHL requires that at least one WI course be in the Hawaiian language and one in English.
The criteria for WI designation include a minimum of 16 typed pages of writing (or equivalent) per semester. The writing must be used to promote increased student understanding of the course materials as well as to help students improve their writing skills. The writing must be the result of interaction (conferences, discussing drafts, etc.) between the student and the instructor and must play a major role in determining the final grade for the course. Courses which are designated as WI are capped at 20 students in order that meaningful and frequent instructor-student interaction be possible. Currently, a wide range of courses — from traditional English and social science lecture classes to natural science laboratory classes — are offered with the WI designation.
Faculty members interested in having their course(s) designated WI must electronically submit a WI application form by visiting the Writing Intensive website.
The WI committee announces deadlines for submitting applications each semester.
Choose the Faculty Application Form link to begin the application process.
Once submitted, this form is sent to all members of the Writing Intensive committee for their review. The WI committee is composed of faculty representing various units. Following their review, faculty members will be notified if their application has been approved. New faculty members may wish to consult with their department and/or division chairs prior to arrival if they wish to participate during their first semester on campus. Courses are designated as WI for one semester at a time and apply specifically to the faculty member(s) requesting the designation. Note: Arrangements can be made to designate a course as WI for multiple semesters under certain conditions. Please consult with the WI Coordinator regarding this situation.
Once a course is approved, a packet of WI information is sent to the instructor. This packet contains general suggestions and reading material especially helpful for first-time WI instructors. The WI coordinator and individual members of the Writing Committee are available to assist WI instructors who have questions or concerns throughout the semester.
For information regarding the Writing Intensive requirement as it relates to students, see the university catalog.
Reviewed June 2012—KH