Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR)

All students must fulfill the Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) to be awarded a CSULB degree.  Ultimately, a grade of C or better in a Writing Intensive (WI) course fulfills the GWAR.  The GWAR Placement Exam (GPE) is used to demonstrate student readiness for the WI course*.

Per order of the Chancellor’s Office:

As of June 2022, GWAR is still required for undergraduates, but it is no longer required for graduate students.

GWAR Pathways

GWAR Pathway Information
Score Pathway
GPE Score of 7 or lower ENGL 301A  (C or better) + GWAR Portfolio Course + Writing Intensive (WI) Course*
GPE Score of 8, 9 or 10 GWAR Portfolio Course + Writing Intensive (WI) Course
GPE Score of 11 or higher or GPE Waiver** Writing Intensive (WI) Course

*Writing Intensive (WI) Course required for CSULB students admitted Fall 2016 or later (Undergraduates only)

** GPE Waiver applicable only to eligible students due to Covid 19 restrictions

(The GPE is a CSULB requirement.)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) & Answers about GWAR and GPE
(Printable Version Accessible PDF also available)

Student Information

Beginning in Fall 2016, the GWAR pathways include completion of a Writing Intensive (WI) course to satisfy the GWAR. Students should go to the Students page for detailed information about the requirements for students who were admitted or readmitted either before or after Fall 2016.

Advisor Information

Because advisors play an important role in students’ GWAR success, please review the GWAR pathways and learn about available GWAR resources.

Faculty Information

Faculty can help students prepare for all GWAR requirements by incorporating informed writing projects and pedagogy into their courses throughout their students' careers, from freshman to senior. To learn more please review the GWAR pathways and visit the Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) website for ideas and hands on guidance.