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Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR)

The Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) must be met by every student at CSULB in accordance with Executive Order 665. If students transfer to CSULB as graduates of another CSU, they have already met the requirement. Otherwise, CSULB undergraduate students must begin the process of meeting the GWAR by taking the Writing Proficiency Exam when they have achieved between 30-50 units. Transfer and non-exempt graduate students must attempt the GWAR in their first semester of enrollment. Graduate students are considered to have met the GWAR if they earned a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a U.S. college or university or from an approved country.

The current GWAR Policy at CSULB stipulates general options for meeting the requirement. Specifically, the GWAR at CSULB can be met in the following ways:

Scoring 11 or above on the CSULB Writing Proficiency Exam (WPE)
Scoring 4 or above on the analytical essay of the GRE or GMAT
Completing a required pathway of writing intensive courses, and earning a passing score on a 4500-word minimum portfolio in a GWAR certified course (students must first take the WPE, a diagnostic test of writing, to determine required coursework)

Students who are required to meet the GWAR at CSULB must first attempt the WPE. The WPE is a diagnostic test of writing administered by Testing, Evaluation & Assessment  in the Division of Student Services. Results determine if further coursework in intensive writing is required; this applies to students who score lower than 11 out of 18 on the WPE. Though the WPE is not a pass/fail exam, pass rates below refer to students who earned a score of 11 or higher.

The following tables contain WPE pass rates for the 2012 - 2013 academic year, and portfolio results from fall 2005 to fall 2012. For more information concerning the GWAR, please visit the GWAR website or contact Dr. Linda Sarbo, CSULB GWAR Coordinator.

WPE Pass Rates from September 2012 - July 2013

Cohort

# Test Takers

# Pass

% Pass

Native English Speakers

5948

5734

96.4

Non-native English Speakers

2069

1528

73.9

College 

The Arts

941

847

90.0

Business Administration

914

757

82.8

Education

243

227

93.4

Engineering

863

730

84.6

Health & Human Services

1740

1607

92.4

Liberal Arts

2404

2273

94.6

Natural Sciences & Mathematics

647

576

89.0

Note: self reported membership in cohort and college; cases may be missing

Total number of students attempting the WPE in 2012 - 2013 = 8,020 with a pass rate of 90.6%

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WPE Pass Rates from September 2012 - July 2013

by College and Native versus Non-Native English Speakers

College
% Pass Among Native English Speakers
% Pass Among Non-native English Speakers
The Arts
96.1
67.7
Business Administration
93.0
62.9
Education
97.7
83.1
Engineering
97.0
61.1
Health & Human Services
96.4
80.8
Liberal Arts
97.4
83.2
Natural Sciences & Mathematics
95.7
74.1

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WPE Pass Rates for September 2012 - July 2013

by College and Native versus Non-Native English Speakers with Numbers of Students Included

College
# Native ENGL
% Pass Native ENGL
# Non-native ENGL
% Pass Non-native ENGL
The Arts
739
96.1
201
67.7
Business Administration
607
93.0
307
62.9
Education
172
97.7
71
83.1
Engineering
564
97.0
298
61.1
Health & Human Services

1291

96.4

449

80.8
Liberal Arts
1922
97.4
481
83.2
Natural Sciences & Mathematics

446

95.7

201

74.1

Portfolio Results

Students who score below 11 on the WPE must take a GWAR-Certified course and complete a 4500 word minimum portfolio. Portfolios are evaluated by instructors of the GWAR-certified courses and additional readers, if necessary, who have been trained in using the portfolio rubric. Portfolio results from fall 2005 to fall 2012 are given in the table below:

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Portfolio Results from Fall 2005 - Fall 2012
 

# Students Submitting Portfolios

# Pass

% Pass

Fall 2005  

22
19
86.4

Spring 2006

44
41
93.2

Summer 2006

19
15
78.9

Fall 2006

62
61
98.4

Spring 2007

82
78
95.1

Summer 2007

76
76
100.0

Fall 2007

127
122
96.1
Spring 2008
261
257
98.5
Summer 2008
74
74
100.0

Fall 2008

218
195
89.4
Spring 2009
185
175
94.6
Summer 2009
70
65
92.9
Fall 2009
186
183
98.4
Spring 2010
182
175
96.2
Summer 2010
79
76
96.2
Fall 2010
213
209
98.1
Spring 2011
355
344
96.9
Summer 2011
158
153
96.8
Fall 2011
356
342
96.1
Spring 2012
432
415
96.1
Summer 2012
125
122
97.6
Fall 2012
314
306
97.5

Spring 2013

357
351
98.3
Summer 2013
95
89
93.7
Fall 2013
303
295
97.3
Fall 2014
337
332
98.5
Total
4732
4570
96.6