What is the difference between a Writing Intensive and Writing Enhanced course?

Writing Intensive Courses (WICS) are designed to have students write substantially throughout the course. The criteria for these courses can be found here.

Writing-Enhanced Courses are designed for those courses with curriculums that may not allow for the same amount of writing required within a WICS. Therefore, faculty teaching these courses only have to adhere to two of the criteria noted for the WICS courses. All faculty are encouraged to provide opportunities for focused feedback to students on one assignment. This feedback can come from a specialist within the Academic Center for Writing.

Why does the QEP website not differentiate between Writing Intensive and Writing Enhanced courses?

In an effort to limit confusion for students, all courses will be advertised as QEP Enhanced.  However, we will differentiate internally regarding which courses have the WICS or Writing Enhanced designation. For students, the differences between the courses will be minimal.

What will students gain from enrolling in these courses?

Students will benefit in many ways from these courses. They will receive writing instruction that is consistent from course to course, have increased writing support, and be better prepared for transfer to four-year universities. As part of the assessment process, a university professor reviews a sample of MVC student writing assignments and provide feedback about the skills needed for them to be successful at a four-year institution. In addition, students will have the option of receive honors credit in each of these courses.

What support is available for instructors teaching these courses?

Faculty teaching Writing Enhanced or Writing Intensive courses will have several support options. Specialists from the Academic Center for Writing are available to offer 15 minute lectures on various writing concepts including MLA/APA, Writing Process, Grammar, Writing Rubric, etc.. In addition, for the next two years, faculty will be able to provide students with free access to Cengage InSite writing software. This software includes plagiarism detection, automatic essay feedback, online skilled readers, and a link to an online writing handbook. 

What will be required of instructors teaching WICS or Writing Enhanced courses?

All faculty will be required to complete the online application located. If the application is approved by the QEP advisory committee, then the faculty member will begin the certification process which includes:

  • Attending 2-4 writing-based professional development sessions

  • Developing and submitting a syllabus for the course

Note that faculty will receive payment for completing the aforementioned tasks.

Once the faculty member begins teaching the class, the faculty will be required to:

  • Include the QEP outcomes within the syllabus of the course

  • Inform students how they can receive honors credit within the course

  • Attend a calibration meeting focused upon the college wide writing rubric (link to rubric)

  • Submit one set of writing assignments at the end of the semester to QEP Co-Chairs, Quentin Wright (qwright@dcccd.edu) or Geoff Grimes (ggrimes@dcccd.edu). A sample of these assignments will be used as part of the assessment process.

What are the outcomes for these courses?

These courses provide direct assessment for Goal 1: To develop students’ skills in mastering writing principles. The outcomes for this goal are:

• By 2017, sixty percent of MVC students completing writing intensive courses will meet expectations in:

o Engaging the phases of the writing process 
o Developing written compositions 
o Employing principles of usage in written compositions 
o Using information resources 
o Applying the elements of critical thinking in their written compositions

These outcomes are assessed using a college-wide writing rubric (link to rubric)


What disciplines are currently involved in the QEP?

There are several disciplines involved in the QEP including Art, Biology, English, Speech, and Government. For a complete list of current QEP courses, please click here.