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First Year Writing Program

The first-year writing program teaches students the research and writing practices that they will need to succeed in their college careers, as well as the persuasive and argumentative skills necessary for a thriving liberal democracy.

The Department of English offers three courses that satisfy Liberal Arts Core categories 1a and 1b:

  • ENG 122 College Composition
  • ENG 123 College Research Paper
  • ENG 225 Communications on a Theme

In ENG 122 students will learn to write clear, effective prose, with special attention paid to matching rhetorical strategy to the intended audience. Students will also learn to improve their critical and creative thinking skills, and to put those faculties to work in the writing of sophisticated and logical academic papers.

In ENG 123 and ENG 225 students study the research skills necessary to locate their own work within wider scholarly conversations about their chosen subject matter. Students continue to work on the ability to argue effectively using the three rhetorical appeals (ethos, pathos, and logos). They learn effective research strategies, including the discovery and evaluation of sources for validity, credibility, and authority. Most sections of ENG 123 allow students the freedom to choose topics that are most relevant to their academic majors.

ENG 225 is a variable-topic course that covers most of the same course objectives as ENG 123, but also offers students an opportunity to practice effective writing while learning about a specialized subject. Recent topics include “The Literacy Narrative,” “Thinking About Art,” “Online Hoaxes and Legends,” and “Issues in Education.”

The Department of English offers numerous sections of all three courses each semester, as well as during the summer. Class sizes are small so that students can be sure of receiving individualized attention.


Writing Program Administrator: Dr. Tara Wood
Email: Tara.Wood@unco.edu
Office: Ross 1190A