Writing is integral to intellectual pursuits of every kind, whether in the humanities, the social or natural sciences, mathematics, or engineering. The Princeton Writing Program encourages excellence in writing across the University through a variety of initiatives, including Writing Seminars for freshmen and a Writing Center for all students.
The Writing Seminars give Princeton freshmen an early opportunity to belong to a lively academic community in which members investigate a shared topic and discuss their writing together, with the aim of clarifying and deepening their thinking. Focused instruction on the writing process and the key elements of academic writing enriches and guides the Writing Seminar experience. Students learn to frame interesting questions, position an argument within a genuine academic debate, substantiate and organize claims, purposefully integrate a wide variety of sources, and revise for greater cogency and clarity. As they work on completing four major assignments of increasing complexity, students submit drafts for review, and participate in conferences with their instructor. Through an extensive collaboration with the University library, Writing Seminar students also learn to locate and evaluate sources. Writing Seminars are interdisciplinary in nature to emphasize transferable reading, writing, and research skills. The Writing Seminar is required of all freshmen, who are assigned in late July to a term, fall or spring, in which to take the course and who make their topic selection based on their interests. The Writing Center offers student writers free one-on-one conferences with experienced fellow writers trained to consult on assignments in any discipline. Students may bring writing projects to the Writing Center in any form--ideas, rough notes, or a first or full draft. Writing Center Fellows offer advice about the writing process, from getting started to revising, and can work with students on essential elements of academic writing, such as thesis, organization, use of sources, and clarity of ideas and sentences. Appointments may be scheduled online.
For more information about the Princeton Writing Program, visit the program website.