Important FWS Fall 2020 update below
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Important Update on First-Year Writing Seminar enrollment procedures for Fall 2020
As part of the rebuilding of the course roster under COVID-19 pandemic conditions, the ballot system for pre-enrolling in First-Year Writing Seminars for Fall 2020 (and possibly Spring 2021) has been replaced with a direct enrollment process.
For Fall 2020 at least, you will pre-enroll in your First-Year Writing Seminar at the same time—and following the same procedure—as all your other classes. The Knight Institute strongly recommends that you consult with your college’s advising office about your enrollment priorities and process.
Please be advised that as conditions change, procedures may change. Please monitor the University Registrar’s website for full, accurate, and updated information:
Here is our general advice for enrolling in your First-Year Writing Seminar:
- Since First-Year Writing Seminars have an absolute enrollment cap (usually 17 in Fall semesters), they may fill very quickly.
- If it is a high priority for you to secure a spot in any specific seminar, you should be prepared to seek it immediately after your enrollment appointment window opens.
- FWSs having an in-person component (“PT” or “HY”) will be available only to students residing in Ithaca and attending in-person classes. If you are not attending in-person classes for health or geographical reasons, only the fully online (“OL”) seminars will be open to you. Please see the website of the Office of the University Registrar for the latest and most accurate information.
- Online seminars are open to students in Ithaca. In Fall 2020, only about 1 in 6 seminars will offer an in-person component. Students seeking these should also be prepared to enroll in any fully online seminar. Please consult with your college’s advising office about your priorities and choices.
- Since your first choice(s) may fill by the time you submit your enrollment request, you should create a list of several First-Year Writing Seminars (at a time-slot compatible with your overall schedule) that you would be interested in taking. Remember that placing a class in your “shopping cart” does not guarantee you a spot in it until the enrollment process is completed.
- Consider that “popularity” does not necessarily correlate with satisfaction: the experience of a small, discussion-based, writing-intensive seminar is at least as important as the subject matter. We know that you can be happy in any seminar.
- You may not enroll in more than one First-Year Writing Seminar at a time.
- Before your window opens, you will be able to see in real time which seminars have open spots remaining, by choosing “FWS Session” from the “Additional Search Criteria” field on Student Center.
- Check “FWS Sessions” frequently, since the list of open seminars changes: if someone drops a spot in a fully-enrolled seminar, it will now show up on the list as “open.”
- If you want to make any change in your FWS enrollment during your appointment period, we strongly urge you to use the “swap” function. (See the OUR’s “Classes + Enrollment” pages for full directions on making enrollment changes.)
- If you drop your spot in one seminar while seeking another, you may not be able to turn around and take it back, since someone else may fill it meanwhile.
- Please do not contact any instructor of a First-Year Writing Seminar to ask if you can “sit in” on or be added to the class. Instructors have no control whatsoever over FWS enrollment. Caps cannot be lifted under any circumstances. There are no “waiting lists”; no Registrar can add you to a seminar. All enrollment and Add-Drop for First-Year Writing Seminars will occur online only, on Student Center.
- Once all class rosters have been created and you have been automatically enrolled in your seminar’s Canvas site, your instructor will be contacting you with information about specific plans for the class meetings.
Again, the best source of information about the enrollment process for Fall 2020 will be the Office of the University Registrar.
First-Year Writing Seminars—and instructors—are very much focused on students. We’re all in this together. We know that your instructors will do their best to create a safe, welcoming space for you to learn and to develop relationships. We are looking forward to seeing you in the First-Year Writing Seminar program!
Fall 2020 First-Year Writing Seminar Course Descriptions
Click here for current (as of 8/24/2020)Fall 2020 First-Year Writing Seminar Course offerings. Please note that this list is subject to change.
Students should aim to satisfy their First-Year Writing Seminar requirement during their first year. Enrollment for FWSs is open only to freshmen, sophomores, and first-semester transfer students; juniors and seniors are not eligible to enroll in First-Year Writing Seminars.
The FWS offerings can be viewed by clicking here. Please note that this list is subject to change.
Transfer students: English 2880-2890, a cluster of writing courses for sophomores, juniors, and seniors, may fulfill a First-Year Writing Seminar requirement for those who need it. Students enroll for these sections through Student Center.
- Fall 2020 First-Year Writing Seminar Brochure can be viewed here.
- Please see the University Registrar's website for information about your First-Year Writing Seminar enrollment periods.
- Electronic Add/Drop will begin September 2, at midnight, directly following Enrollment Round 2.
- Writing seminars begin September 2.
- The last day to add an FWS is September 16.
Electronic Add/Drop for First-Year Writing Seminars
FWS Add/Drop enrollment must be done electronically through Student Center. Neither instructors nor registrars can approve additional enrollment into any First-Year Writing Seminar. Caps on enrollment cannot be lifted. There are no wait-lists or forms to sign; do not ask an instructor about adding a seminar. Instructors will not allow any student not on the roster to sit in on a First-Year Writing Seminar.
To find open First-Year Writing Seminars during the Add/Drop period:
- Go to Student Center.
- At the search screen, click on “Additional Search Criteria.”
- Choose “FWS Session” from the “Session” field. This will show you all open FWS classes.
A First-Year Writing Seminar is open ONLY if it appears in this list. Check frequently, because the list can change.