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Entry-Level Writing Requirement

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The Entry-Level Writing Requirement (ELWR) is a University of California reading and writing proficiency requirement that all first-year students must satisfy. This requirement is not an admissions requirement. The ELWR must be satisfied either before beginning courses on a UC campus or during the first year of enrollment. For information about individual high schools’ success rates in preparing their students to satisfy the ELWR, please go to the UC Office of the President website

There are a variety of ways incoming students can satisfy the ELWR both before or after they officially matriculate (enroll full-time).

Ways to Satisfy ELWR

Students may satisfy the ELWR by any one of the following ways:

  • 30 or better on the ACT, English Language Arts; or
  • 63 or better on the ACT, English + Reading
  • 30 or better on the ACT, Combined English/Writing (exam last administered June 2015); or
  • 680 or better on the SAT, Evidenced-Based Reading and Writing; or
  • 680 or better on the SAT Reasoning Test, Writing (exam last administered January 2016); or
  • 3 or above on the College Board Advanced Placement Examination in English (Language or Literature) or Seminar; or
  • 3 or above on the College Board Advanced Placement assessment in Research
  • 5 or above on an International Baccalaureate Higher Level English A: Literature exam (formerly known as Higher Level English A1 exam); or
  • 6 or above on an International Baccalaureate Standard Level English A: Literature exam (formerly known as Standard Level English A1 exam); or
  • 5 or above on an International Baccalaureate Higher Level English A: Language and Literature exam; or
  • 6 or above on an International Baccalaureate Standard Level English A: Language and Literature exam; or
  • Satisfactory score on the UC Analytical Writing Placement Exam
  • The requirement can also be met by earning a grade of C or higher in a transferable English composition course offered by a college or university.

Students who have not satisfied the ELWR before beginning as full-time students must enroll in one of UCR’s Entry-Level Writing courses during their first quarter on campus. The Director of the University Writing Program determines the appropriate course based on the students' AWPE exams, and placements are made available to students electronically.

  1. Complete with a C or better one of the following summer courses offered on the UCR campus before beginning classes in the fall.
    • A seven-week, five-unit ENGL004 course at UCR from July through September.
    • A seven-week, ten-unitHighlander Early Start Academy program at UCR from July through September; Students will take English 4, an Oral Communication course, and an Early Start Seminar.
    Please see the UCR summer session website for information about all summer courses at UCR, days and times of sections, and instructions for enrollment.
  2. Complete with a grade of C or better an Entry-Level Writing Requirement course during the summer at another UC campus.  Check UC campus' home pages for summer school information.
  3. Complete with a grade of C or better a 4 quarter-unit or 3 semester-unit college-level course in English composition (equivalent to UCR ENGL 001A), taken at another institution before the student enters UCR, and judged acceptable by the Office of Admissions. To find out whether a course at your local campus is acceptable, go to www.assist.org. Passing this course satisfies both the ELWR and the ENGL 001A requirements. Students who choose this option should have reason to believe they can pass an advanced writing course. This option is not available to students after they begin at UCR as full-time students.
  4. Complete with a grade of C or better a preparatory writing course at a CSU or community college campus, and then retake and pass the AWPE at UCR in September. The course should be completed in time to submit evidence of a passing grade to the University Writing Program Office by the start of the Fall Quarter. Students should submit evidence of passing a passing grade along with a note including their name, student ID number, and a request to be added to the September exam roster. Once the grade report is approved, students receive permission to retake the AWPE. (A photocopy of a grade report is sufficient and can be emailed, along with a note, to Sheena Thrush (UWP Counselor), at sheena.thrush@ucr.edu. This option is not available to students after they begin at UCR as full-time students.

Analytical Writing Placement Exam

About The Test

The Analytical Writing Placement Exam (AWPE) determines if entering students can read and write at the level expected to satisfy the UC Entry-Level Writing Requirement (ELWR).  The AWPE will be administered to new incoming UCR freshmen who have not yet satisfied the ELWR.  The exam is only available to students who have completed their Statement of Intent to Register (SIR). Students who write satisfactory exams satisfy the ELWR are eligible to enroll in the first course of the UCR Freshman Composition sequence (English 1A - Beginning Composition).  Students whose exams are determined to be unsatisfactory are given instructions to enroll in a particular ELWR course. UCR urges all new students to satisfy their ELWR before becoming a full-time student in the fall.

Students who have not officially satisfied the ELWR in one of the UC approved methods must complete the AWPE.  Completing the online AWPE on one of the test dates in May or June will ensure that students have placement information before registering for fall quarter classes when attending their Highlander Orientation Session in July or August.  

 

More information regarding the UC elwr

Sample Prompt

You will be given a prose passage to read carefully. The passage is followed by a question or topic related to the prose passage but intended to give you the opportunity to express your own opinions and ideas. Respond to the topic by writing an essay that is controlled by a central idea and is specifically developed.

You will have two hours to read the passage and complete your essay.  The question requires no specialized knowledge. We are interested in your thoughts on the issue you write about and in your presentation and expression of them. Your essay will be evaluated on the basis of your ability to develop your central idea, to express yourself clearly, and to use the conventions of written English.



Scoring

Each essay is scored independently by two readers, who measure it against the 6 point scoring guide, written by the experts who developed the examination. Papers with composite scores (sum of the two readers’ scores) of 8 and higher satisfy the UC Entry-Level Writing Requirement. Results from exams will be sent to each student via their UCR email address.  Students who complete the online exam in May or June will have the results before the first Highlander Orientation Session. Results are final; your essay will not be re-evaluated after the University-wide scoring session.  



Exam Fee

The fee for this exam is $100 and will be automatically added to your student account after completing the essay exam.  Students who receive a fee waiver for the UC Application Fee will also receive a fee wavier for the Analytical Writing Placement Exam.  

 

Test Dates

Students who have not satisfied the Entry-Level Writing Requirement must take the Analytical Writing Placement Exam.

2024-2025 Academic Year

Test Dates: 

Test Date: Exam Start Time*: Exam Location: Registration Link Registration Closes**
Saturday, May 18, 2024 10:00 AM Online (Canvas/eLearn) Register 05/16/2024
Saturday, May 18, 2024 5:00 PM Online (Canvas/eLearn) Register 05/16/2024
Sunday, May 19, 2024 10:00 AM Online (Canvas/eLearn) Register 05/16/2024
Sunday, May 19, 2024 5:00 PM Online (Canvas/eLearn) Register 05/16/2024
Saturday, June 22, 2024 10:00 AM Online (Canvas/eLearn) Register 06/16/2024
Saturday, June 22, 2024 5:00 PM Online (Canvas/eLearn) Register 06/16/2024
Sunday, June 23, 2024 10:00 AM Online (Canvas/eLearn) Register 06/16/2024
Sunday, June 23, 2024 5:00 PM Online (Canvas/eLearn) Register 06/16/2024

*Exam times are based on the Pacific Standard Time
**Registration closes at 11:59 PM
 

It is necessary to register for the Analytical Writing Placement Exam: 

  • Register for the exam.
    • Select a test date listed in the chart above.
    • The registration link will take you to a Qualtrics survey form.
  • Prepare the necessary materials:
    • A computer or laptop
    • Webcam
    • ​​​Photo ID
      • ie. Driver's license, passport, R'Card, High School photo ID, etc.
  • Know your UCR NetID.
  • Prepare your exam space:
    • A quiet place where you will not be interrupted
    • Two hours to complete the exam
  • BE ON TIME! Students will not get additional time if they begin the exam after the scheduled start time.
  • Students requesting accommodations for the exam should contact  the Student Disability Resource Center.
    • Please submit accommodation requests to the SDRC at least 3 weeks before your preferred test date.

 

Questions about the Analytical Writing Placement Exam should be addressed to the University Writing Program: uwp@ucr.edu.

 

Time Limit

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If students have not satisfied the requirement upon entrance as full-time students, they must satisfy the ELWR within three quarters of full-time enrollment.

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Students who have not satisfied the ELWR after three quarters of university residence (three quarters of enrollment during the regular academic year) are not normally eligible to enroll for a fourth quarter at the University of California.

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For students placed in BSWT001 or BSWT003, this three-quarter residence rule begins after satisfactory completion of BSWT003 or the start of their fourth quarter of regular enrollment at UCR, whichever comes first.

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