Writing 101: Academic Writing

Duke's one-semester, first-year course in Academic Writing (Writing 101), offers students a foundation for and introduction to university-level writing. Writing 101 courses enroll no more than 15 students per section, creating a seminar environment consisting of vigorous class discussion and careful consideration of student writing. The course helps students develop strategies for generating, supporting, and sharing their ideas within a community of scholars.

Writing 101 Course Goals and Practices 

Duke students can select a section of Writing 101 from a wide range of topics in order to explore areas of academic interest. (See gray box on right to download current sections.) From gothic literature to religious mysticism, militia movements to bioethics, students have a rich array of courses from which to choose. While specific reading and writing projects vary by professor, all sections of Writing 101 share the same course goals and practices.

These goals and practices prepare students for the rigorous scholarly analysis of information and evaluation of competing claims they will encounter throughout their undergraduate careers. Students in all sections of Writing 101 to learn how to:

  • engage with the work of others;
  • articulate a position;
  • situate their writing within specific contexts; and
  • transfer writing knowledge into situations beyond Writing 101.

In developing their work-in-progress, students are offered practice in:

  • researching;
  • workshopping;
  • revising; and
  • editing.

Course Faculty

Writing 101 faculty have doctorates in a variety of disciplines—including biology, English, history, literature, anthropology, ecology, and philosophy—and have completed specialized training in the teaching of writing.