Writing and Learning

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Writing Development Reflection


Write a 500-word Writing Development Reflection in which you describe and explore the following:

             A) How you have grown as a writer at Cal Poly;
             B) How you will translate your writing skills for future employment.

When completing this task, you might consider the following:

  • What actions you have taken to develop your writing skills at Cal Poly (e.g., classes, tutoring, other efforts);
  • What specifically about your writing has changed during your time at the university;
  • How you will use writing in your profession and how have the writing skills you've gained at Cal Poly prepared you to succeed in written communication post degree. 

Include your full name and the title "Writing Development Reflection" in the document, and save the file as follows:

Last name_First initial_Reflection

Reflection is a process where students describe their learning, how it changed, and how it might relate to future educational or professional experiences (Learning and Leading with Habits of Mind, 2008). The practice of reflection highly impacts learning and achievement because it fosters the skills and habits integral to students' understanding of the value of their educational experiences.  Reflective writing is an activity that includes description (what, when, who) and analysis (how, why, what if). It is an explorative tool to help you learn from a particular practical experience - in this case, what you learned from your Cal Poly writing education.

Reflective writing is not:

  • just conveying information
  • pure description, though there may be descriptive elements
  • a straightforward decision or judgement, e.g. about whether your writing skills are good or bad
  • a simple summary 

Reflective writing is:

  • a way of exploring your learning
  • a way to achieve clarity and better understanding of what you have learned
  • a way of making meaning out of your knowledge and experience
  • an opportunity to gain self-knowledge

As you consider further how best to complete this prompt, remember that the writing education you have gained at Cal Poly is aligned with the University Learning Objectives (ULOs) listed below:

  • Think critically and creatively
  • Communicate effectively
  • Demonstrate expertise in a scholarly discipline and understand that discipline in relation to the larger world of the arts, sciences, and technology
  • Work productively as individuals and in groups
  • Use their knowledge and skills to make a positive contribution to society
  • Make reasoned decisions based on an understanding of ethics, a respect for diversity, and an awareness of issues related to sustainability
  • Engage in lifelong learning

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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

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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