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About Online Sections

Online writing courses are an effective and exciting way to advance your writing skills and meet core requirements on a more flexible schedule. Students who are on co-op may find this option particularly attractive, but any student may enroll in online Advanced Writing in the Disciplines (AWD).

Fast facts:

  • Online AWD fulfills the AWD core requirement.
  • Online sections often require more reading and writing than face-to-face sections because oral communication (e.g. lectures and class discussions) is rendered into written form.
  • Online instructors will provide you with the same degree of feedback as in a face-to-face class. You’ll also be expected to give and receive writing feedback with your peers; some sections will require group work.
  • Online AWD is not self-paced—you must meet multiple deadlines each week.
  • Some online sections are available for speakers of other languages.

Self-Assessment Tool

How well-suited are you for an online writing course? Online AWD is ideal for students who are self-motivated learners and comfortable with online technologies, but this type of course is not for everyone. Read through the self-assessment tool below. If you find that many of the statements apply to you, the virtual classroom could be a good option.

Learning Style

  • I learn best from reading and seeing information
  • I follow directions easily and I feel comfortable asking for clarifications when necessary
  • I have good time management skills and can plan ahead to meet deadlines
  • I am comfortable participating substantively in online peer discussions
  • I am able to work independently and on my own schedule to meet course expectations

Writing Ability

  • I consider my writing ability and basic grammar skills competent for the demands of an advanced writing course
  • I am comfortable having my writing visible to peers and receiving feedback from peers/instructor
  • I am comfortable revising work on my own
  • I am familiar with online research and finding sources

Technical Literacy

  • I have regular access to a computer and high-speed Internet
  • I am comfortable using MyNeu, Blackboard, MS Word, etc
  • I am comfortable attaching files, downloading/uploading documents and articles, creating and using PDFs, etc
  • I know how to create projects using Excel, PowerPoint, etc

Schedule Considerations

  • I have time to check e-mail and Discussion Board postings regularly
  • I am able to dedicate several hours a week to online coursework, despite work and/or other academic demands

Second-Language Learners

  • I am comfortable reading/comprehending large amounts of material written in English
  • I am willing to revise my work multiple times, if necessary
  • I have adequate time to read, translate, and respond to peer posts
  • I am comfortable asking questions if I don’t understand certain terms or slang
  • I recognize that I may need to put in extra time and start assignments early