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For Instructors

Proposing New and Renewing Existing JYW Courses

The Purpose of Junior Year Writing

The JYW Program aims to give students the opportunity to improve their skills in advanced, discipline-specific writing.  Research in writing studies shows that students become more adept writers when they are asked to write in a variety of intellectual contexts; for that reason, junior year writing assignments ask students to write in multiple genres and for a variety of purposes and audiences. Teachers can encourage such writing by asking students to develop professional writing portfolios that contain samples of documents that reflect discipline-specific expectations for genre, style, and correctness.

Proposing a new JYW course for your department

The University Writing Committee (UWC) approves all courses that satisfy the JYW requirement. The UWC will notify the Registrar directly about course approvals, and only these approved courses will satisfy the university’s Junior Year Writing requirement. This includes:

  • New JYW courses
  • Adding the JYW designation to existing courses
  • Quinquennial reviews of all JYW courses currently offered at the university

All reviews are submitted electronically through the UMass Course and Curriculum Management System.

For a comprehensive description of the contents of the review proposal including required materials and questions, please refer to this Guide to JYW Proposals. Additionally, please refer to the criteria for JYW courses here. We encourage instructors who are developing their teaching in existing JYW courses to explore these resources.