Writing and Rhetoric (WRT)

The Program in Writing and Rhetoric offers courses that fulfill the University's D.E.C. category A English Composition requirement. The program also provides electives for students who want to explore writing in different contexts and enhance their proficiency in academic writing.

The philosophy of the University's Program in Writing and Rhetoric is that writing is an ongoing process as well as a finished product. Because writing well requires re-thinking and re-writing, the program emphasizes revision. Courses require multiple drafts of all papers submitted for the final writing portfolio.

Writing courses stress collaborative learning in the classroom and are designed as workshops. Students work in small groups to learn aspects of writing analysis and criticism to better analyze their own writing as well as the writing of fellow students. By learning how to analyze their writing, students learn to improve their writing. All group work is supervised by writing instructors experienced in workshop teaching and in critical commentary on student writing. The primary goal of all writing courses is effective communication, orally and in writing.

Minor in Writing

Advanced knowledge of written communication helps learners in all disciplines to become better students, employees, citizens, and human beings. This minor complements nearly any choice of major concentration since writing competency is necessary in many upper-level courses and in most professions, regardless of subject area. The writing minor allows students a high degree of flexibility in choosing coursework that suits their interests and schedules.


The Writing Center

The Writing Center provides free, individual help with writing to all members of the University community, including undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff. Tutors assist with writing projects ranging from freshman composition essays to dissertation proposals. Tutors receive ongoing training in all aspects of the teaching of writing and are prepared to mentor a whole host of issues (e.g., getting started, developing arguments, revising, editing, learning techniques for editing and proofreading, understanding specific aspects of grammar, and addressing the needs of English as a second language students). Although the Center does not provide proofreading or copyediting services, the tutors are always willing to teach strategies to help writers eliminate error on their own.

Sessions generally take three forms: weekly appointments with the same tutor that students can extend through the semester; drop-in sessions that depend on the availability of tutors, and e-tutoring sessions that students can access through the Center's Web site at http://www.stonybrook.edu/writrhet. All tutoring sessions are approximately 50 minutes long.

For hours of operation or to schedule an appointment, call (631) 632-7405.

Electronic Writing Classrooms

The Program in Writing and Rhetoric has two computer labs that are used for instructional purposes. The Life Sciences EWC, located in L-112, contains 26 personal computers. The History EWC, located in SBS S316, has 22 PCs. Both are open to scheduled classes only. MS Office, Dreamweaver, and Photoshop, along with teaching and Internet tools, are installed on all machines, and both labs have projection capability and access to networked laser-quality printing. Class times are posted at http://www.stonybrook.edu/writrhet