CSCE 481 Seminar
REPORT ON PROPOSED W COURSE: CSCE 481
We recommend that CSCE 481 Seminar be certified as a writing (W) course for four academic years (1/10 to 1/14). We have reviewed a representative syllabus and have determined that the course meets or exceeds the following criteria:
- Percentage of final grade based on writing quality: 100%
- Course content appropriate to the major
- Total number of words: 6250
- Instructor to student ratio for one section: 1:15
CSCE is a junior/senior level follow-up to the entry course, CSCE 181, offered to first year and sophomore students. They share a common book (Writing for Computer Science), and together establish an expectation that all CSCE students will work on their writing skills. One or two graduate assistants are assigned to the course to help the instructor. CSCE requires that students write five short reports and a resume, which provide them with practice and feedback, and one longer report. They are required to turn in a draft of the long report for instructor comment, which is then revised. Students also must meet with either the instructor or the teaching assistant early in the writing process to go over the topic, outline, and sources planned for the report.
If the short reports and resume do not meet an acceptable level of quality, students are required to revise and resubmit them. Besides reading about writing in computer science, instruction includes lectures on writing in computer science and a full class day devoted to writing issues.