Writing and Learning Initiatives

Optimizing academic support and achievement

GWR Portfolio

The GWR Portfolio is designed to be easy-to-create using tools you already have: it’s just three files uploaded to one online Canvas page. The portfolio must include two writing projects you completed in upper-division college courses along with the Writing Development Reflection. *Note: The GWR Portfolio has a $35 fee beginning Fall 2021.

Registration

For fall 2021, students with fall 2021 and winter 2022 graduation dates will receive an email with information on how to register for the GWR Portfolio. Once students pay the $35 GWR Portfolio Fee they will be added to the GWR Portfolio Canvas site. 

Beginning winter 2022, students interested in completing the GWR through the portfolio pathway should enroll in UNIV 401: GWR Portfolio. This CR/NC course is offered online only, carries a $35 course fee, and has the following prerequisites: junior standing and completion of GE Area A with grades of C- or better.

Fall 2021 Due Date

Accessing the GWR Portfolio Canvas site: Students with fall 2021 and winter 2022 graduation dates will be added to the GWR Portfolio Canvas site once they pay the GWR Portfolio fee (again, students will receive an email with information on how to pay the fee). 
Submitting the GWR Portfolio: Students who are added to the GWR Portfolio Canvas site intending to fulfill the GWE via the portfolio in fall 2021 must submit materials by Friday, November 19, 2021.

Required Criteria 

  • Writing Development Reflection that is at least 500 words and meets the expectations of the reflection prompt.
  • One assignment that is at least 750 words from any upper-division (300-, 400-, or 500-level) course that granted Cal Poly credit 
  • A second assignment that is at least 750 words from any upper-division (300-, 400-, or 500-level) course that granted Cal Poly credit

Assignment Specifications

  • Each assignment must be a graded task on which you earned a C or better;
  • Each assignment must be one that you independently wrote - no collaborative projects will be accepted;
  • Each assignment must be your original work and should cite any outside sources; 
  • Each assignment should demonstrate your ability to respond effectively to rhetorical situations and present information in an organized manner with fully developed supporting points expressed logically and clearly;
  • Each assignment may represent a different genre (an essay, research paper, proposal, annotated bibliography, technical paper, lab report) as long as it meets the above specifications and criteria. Note: short answer exams that combined total 750 words are not acceptable.

Note: If you do not have two already-written assignments from upper-division courses that meet the required specifications and criteria, you may select one or more writing prompts from the Optional Writing Prompts to complete and submit in place of one or both of those assignments. 

Preferred Criteria  

The criteria below are not required, but some students may appreciate this additional guidance when creating their portfolios.  

  • At least one assignment was completed for an upper-division writing-intensive General Education (C4 or D5) course;
  • At least one assignment was completed for an upper-division major-specific course;
  • Each assignment comes from a different course;
  • The writing process for the assignment included peer-review (there is no need to include reviewed drafts or peer review feedback);
  • There was an opportunity to revise the assignment after receiving feedback from the instructor (there is no need to include instructor feedback or graded copies).


Have you left the San Luis Obispo area but still need to fulfill the GWR?

The Writing and Learning Initiatives office can assist you; please contact the office for next steps.  

Related Content

Fall Quarter Updates


Academic Support 

September 20 - December 08

*Tutoring is available both in person and virtually; study sessions and supplemental workshops are virtual for fall quarter. For more information, click here.

Graduation Writing Requirement

*A GWR Portfolio has replaced the WPE; for more information, click here

Academic Preparation and Placement

Cal Poly adheres to the CSU's placement practice, which evaluates multiple measures of pre-college academic performance to determine placement in first-year English and math courses. Cal Poly also offers summer support courses in compliance with the CSU's Early Start Program to help incoming first-year students prepare for a successful college experience. More information is available on the Academic Preparation and Placement webpage

Academic Support

The Writing and Learning Initiatives Office offers a comprehensive menu of academic resources designed to ensure optimal educational opportunities for diverse student populations: peer consultants offer free tutoring in any course or subject, peer-led supplemental workshops and study sessions provide support for STEM-specific courses, and the online Study Strategies Library offers a collection of resources to help you achieve your learning goals. More information is available on the Academic Support Programs webpage

Graduation Writing Requirement

All degree-seeking Cal Poly students, including a Master's degree or teaching credential, must fulfill the GWR. Undergraduate students must complete 90 units before they can attempt to fulfill the requirement and should do so before the senior year. The two pathways to GWR completion are 1) in an approved upper-division course and 2) via the GWR Portfolio. More information is available on the GWR webpage