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About The Analytical Writing Program


In order to complete your Analytical Writing course and move on to the College Writing courses, you will need to demonstrate the ability to:

  • Develop critical reading strategies for analyzing and responding to academic texts
  • Use writing as a means of critical inquiry
  • Formulate an argument that engages in larger academic conversations
  • Advance a clear claim
  • Utilize organizational structures and language conventions appropriate to an academic audience
  • Practice revision and editing using feedback from instructors and peers
  • Reflect effectively on your critical thinking and writing processes
  • Find and use evidence from multiple sources
  • Use citations according to the principles of the UC San Diego Academic Integrity Policy

If, by the end of the course, we deem that your work demonstrates basic competence in the above categories, you will be able to enroll in your College Writing courses. If you have questions, please contact the Analytical Writing Program Office.


The Analytical Writing courses employ a student-centered philosophy that puts you and your work at the center of the class. In other words, every class discussion and assignment is designed with the idea of helping you grow as a writer. Your success is this program’s primary concern.

To help you achieve this success, we create an environment in which a diverse population of students can come together as a community to work on a common goal: improving their writing. Most of the work of this course will involve revising your written work based on the feedback that you will receive from your instructor and your peers. You will also offer feedback in return, thereby improving your own analytical reading and writing abilities.  

Because learning to write is a collaborative endeavor, the responsibility for that learning will be shared among your instructor, your peers, and you.  Nevertheless, the primary responsibility for your learning rests with you. Students who make a genuine commitment to their writing education—who take the questions and challenges of the course seriously, and who dedicate their energies to producing thoughtful and carefully crafted papers—can expect to grow as thinkers and writers through the work of this course.  

In order to take on responsibility for your learning, you’ll be expected to:

  • Carefully read, annotate, and think about all assigned readings
  • Come to class prepared to make contributions to the class discussion  
  • Write and revise your work so that it is increasingly interesting, effective, and clear
  • Offer thoughtful responses to your peers’ writing and be ready to reflect on their responses to yours

Finally, remember that not only are you responsible for your success in this class, you are also responsible for the success of your classmates, and for the success of the class as a whole. If you find a class discussion confusing or boring, take responsibility for that.  Ask a question that will bring clarity, or that will take the discussion to new and interesting ground.  Your instructor is coming to class ready to invest in you.  If you come to class with that same willingness to invest, the class will be a wonderful and productive learning experience for all.