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Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement Placement Examination (GPE)


The GWAR Placement Examination (GPE) is available both In-Person and On-line testing. Students that choose In-Person testing must comply with all Health Precautions. An On-line testing is being offered for students who choose not to come to campus. This option requires student's acceptance of online procedures which requires LockDown Browser & Monitor installation, and the Webcam must be turned on for the entire exam period. The On-line exam is at the same date and time as the In-Person testing. Please read the GPE Bulletin for more detailed information.

To qualify for a degree, certificate, or for advancement to candidacy for a master's degree, students under the 1977-78 or subsequent catalogs must meet the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR).

New Requirement

CSULB passed a new writing policy in Fall 2012. The goal of the policy is to create a system whereby students with writing difficulties are identified early and get help. An additional goal is to promote writing across the curriculum. A new test was created: the Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement Placement Examination (GPE).

Undergraduate Students

To meet the GWAR, undergraduate students must first take the Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement Placement Examination (GPE). The GPE will be used to place students into pathways that give them opportunities to achieve required learning outcomes. Please visit the GWAR website for more information. Undergraduate students must attempt the GPE when they have achieved between 30-50 cumulative units, and transfer students shall complete the GPE preferably before they enroll at CSULB, but no later than their first semester of enrollment. Otherwise, a registration hold will be placed on their records. Students with a GPE registration hold can file one appeal to have the hold temporarily removed. The appeal form given below must be completed and mailed or delivered to the Testing Department. Students submitting an appeal must also have registered for the GPE. To register for the GPE, please click on " online registration" on the upper right side of this page.

Appeal to Have a GPE Hold Temporarily Removed Form - PDF

Graduate Students

Graduate students who earned a bachelor's degree from a U.S. college or university are considered to have met the GWAR, and are not required to take the GPE. Exemptions for such graduate students are automatically noted in student records.
Graduate students who earned a degree from a non-U.S. college or university on this approved list are considered to have met the GWAR, and are not required to take the GPE. However, students from approved countries must file this petition and submit it to Testing to have their records updated.
Please note: graduate students with GPE registration holds should send an email request to have it lifted to

Score Report Request

Current students can obtain their GPE results on MyCSULB six to eight weeks after attempting the exam. CSULB students who are not currently enrolled and are not returning may need to request a score report. This form is given below; please complete it and email to

GPE Score Request Form - PDF

Workshops & the GPE Scoring Guide

Free GPE preparation workshops are available one to two weeks before each GPE administration. Pre-registration is not required. Both workshops are open to all students. In these workshops, instructors will review the GPE scoring guide and GPE Workshop Booklet so students can understand how their essays will be scored.

GPE On-Line Testing Students
Test Date: October 29, 2021
Workshop Date: October 22, 2021
Workshop Time: 12:30 p.m.
Workshop Zoom Meeting: GPE On-Line Testing Workshop

GPE In-Person Testing Students
Test Date: October 30, 2021
Workshop Date: October 28, 2021
Workshop Time: 1:00 p.m.
Workshop Zoom Meeting: GPE In-Person Testing Workshop