How to Choose Your Writing Course

Welcome to Writing at SJSU! As you enter SJSU, you enter a new learning community. The first work you do will be to explore the college writing requirements at SJSU and the courses available to you, and then to decide which of these courses will help you transition into this new learning community during your first year at SJSU.

What Do I Need to Do?

All entering freshmen complete the Reflection on College Writing, an online course in Canvas. Canvas is the learning management system faculty use to deliver course content and evaluate student work at SJSU.

The five modules in Canvas will guide you to explore how your prior learning as a reader and writer can be transferred to SJSU writing courses and requirements.

You will explore five questions:

  1. Who are you as a writer?
  2. How will you use reading at SJSU?
  3. What will SJSU writing assignments be like?
  4. What are your course options as a writer?
  5. Which course is best for you?

For each assignment and survey you complete, you will earn a point. When you have earned all 10 points, your work is complete. Check the Grades report in Canvas to make sure you have earned the points before your Orientation session.

The time you invest in these reflection activities will help you to find the instruction and support you need to develop as a college writer within the SJSU learning community.

How Do I Begin?

The Reflection on College Writing modules will be available in Canvas starting May 15, 2018. As soon as you have been assigned an SJSU ID, we will use that ID to enroll you into Canvas.

You will receive a course invitation from Canvas in your email. If you do not receive a course invitation by May 29, check your spam folder. If you cannot locate your invitation, email us at

If you are waiting to find out if you have earned credits for college writing, either through test scores or through a college equivalent or community college course, you will need to know those outcomes before you can begin this work.

Where and When Do I Complete the Reflection Activities?

The modules are delivered online so that you can complete this work remotely. You do not need to come to campus.

If you need computer access, however, we welcome you to come use a campus computer.

You can complete this work at your own pace. While the modules can be done in 3 hours, we recommend you work at a comfortable pace.


Where Do You Begin Your Writing Studies? What You Need to Do When You Need to Complete It How to Complete the Requirement Where to Go Next
Do you already have college credit for writing? Complete the Reflection on College Writing. Before your Orientation date. You need to score 10 points in the Canvas modules.

Follow this link to the Canvas login.

Do you need to complete an entry-level college writing course? Complete the Reflection on College Writing. Initial deadline is June 9, 2018. Deadlines to clear prerequisites are listed in the Table of Reflection Deadlines. You need to score 10 points in the Canvas modules to clear the Reflections prerequisite.

Follow this link to the Canvas login.


What Is the Deadline to Complete the Work in Canvas?

June 9, 2018, is the first deadline to complete in Canvas the Reflection on College Writing. We recommend everyone to work toward this deadline if at all possible. But note that there are rolling deadlines throughout the summer, paced to ensure you are ready to enroll by your Frosh Orientation date.

The sooner you complete the work, the sooner you will know which course to register for.

If you are trying to enroll in English 1A or English 1AF (Stretch English), the Reflection on College Writing is a prerequisite to the course you’ve selected. Thus, it is really important that you work with us to ensure you are ready to enroll during Frosh Orientation.

Read more about the subsequent deadlines in the Table of Reflection Deadlines to Clear Your Prerequisite.

What Happens If I Don’t Complete This Work?

You will not be prepared to assemble your first SJSU writing portfolio if you have not done this work. Students assemble the Reflection on College Writing essays into an ePortfolio during their first SJSU writing course. This portfolio will be a reference point as writing instructors and students work together to monitor and direct your development as a writer at SJSU.

The Reflection is also a prerequisite to our entry-level courses, English 1A and English 1AF/S. To enroll in either of these classes, students must have scored 10 points on the Reflection on College Writing modules.

If you are required to be enrolled in a writing course in fall, you must make sure to meet the prerequisite in time to enroll for a fall section of the course you choose.

Please work within the deadlines. Check your Grades in Canvas to be sure you have 10 points. Only then will MySJSU allow you to enroll in English 1A or English 1AF.

The Reflection on College Writing closes on August 13, 2018.

How Do I Stay on Track for Graduation?

We provide courses that allow all students to complete their first writing requirement within the first year of instruction at SJSU. Students who choose English 1A or English 1AF/1AS (Stretch) can complete their A2 requirement (with a C- or better) by the end of the first year.

To be sure you are fulfilling your commitment to complete your A2 requirement on time, visit the Supported Instruction website to learn more about your timeline for enrolling in and completing writing.

Canvas Student Resources

FAQs about the Reflection on Writing

Student Choice Data