Most incoming international students at WOU will be required to enroll in the following courses. The only exceptions are 3+1 arrangement students and some 2+2 arrangement students and, in rare cases, students who have fulfilled equivalent requirements at other US colleges or universities.


ICS 110: First Year Experience (FYE) for International Students

2 credits. FYE courses at WOU are designed to help students adapt to the university setting in the United States. We have reserved sections of FYE for international students in order to best help them transition from their previous school systems abroad to WOU. International students who come from a high school or college in their home country and/or an English language program or community college in the US will find that the US university system and academic culture is very different from what they are used to. The objectives of the international student sections of FYE are:

  • to explore the purpose, value, and expectations of higher education
  • to learn about campus resources and involvement opportunities
  • to strengthen students’ connection to WOU, faculty, staff, and fellow students
  • to develop strong study and critical thinking skills for success in college classes
  • to help students create long and short term goals for college, career, and life after college
  • to learn about the different challenges they will face inside and outside of the classroom and how to go about tackling those challenges

Writing 121: College Writing I for International Students

4 credits. About half of all incoming freshmen at WOU enroll in WR 121 based on their entrance tests or instructor recommendations. At WOU we have found that international students perform better in higher level writing courses if they take WR 121 and they do even better if they enroll in sections of WR 121 that are reserved for international students. All students who are required to enroll in WR 121 (domestic of international students sections) must pass with at least a C- in order to continue to WR 122. The objectives of WR 121 for international students are:

  • to create personal writing process goals: identify, evaluate, & revise strategies of prewriting, drafting, revising and editing to increase personal success
  • to demonstrate rhetorical awareness: knowledge of the roles that context, purpose, and audience play in directing a writer’s choices
  • to develop the ability to critically read and respond as a writer on global and local levels
  • to engage in personal writing: write to learn and write to communicate
  • to identify individual writing strengths and challenges on global and local levels, and show improvement and increased confidence for continued growth and development
  • to find, integrate, and appropriately document outside sources for use in your writing
  • to develop a working set of vocabulary to describe writing and what writers do
  • to discuss the discourse conventions related to grammar and mechanics in context and the conventions of academic writing and Standard Written English
  • to create a community of writers who are responsible for sharing information and reviewing each other’s written contributions to the class


Writing 122: College Writing II for International Students

4 credits. WR 122 is required of all WOU students to graduate. International students should enroll in this course in the term after taking WR 121. Students who pass WR 121 with a ‘B’ or better are allowed to choose any section of WR 122 (with domestic students or reserved for international students). However, students who receive a ‘B-‘ or lower in WR 121 are encouraged to enroll in an international section of WR 122 if one is available so that we can best meet their writing needs. Prerequisite: Writing 121 for International Students The objectives of WR 122 are:

  • to demonstrate the ability to engage in all stages of the writing process from focusing topics to supporting ideas to reviewing (revising and editing)
  • to develop proficiency in arguing different types of claims as well as using writing as a means of discovery and for the reinforcement of learning
  • to discuss the discourse conventions related to choosing an appropriate structure for a given rhetorical situation, utilizing and documenting a variety of sources as evidence and support, and understanding grammar and mechanics as elements of the writer’s craft
  • to engage in critical thinking and writing about a range of topics and reading from a variety of academic and popular texts
  • to identify personal writing strengths and challenges in order to increase confidence and ensure continued growth and development
  • to create a community of writers who are responsible for sharing information and reviewing each other’s written contributions to the class


Linguistics 136: Academic Discourse for International Students

4 credits. In this course students analyze academic language in order to understand the language demands of college-level reading with emphasis on strategies for reading comprehension, sentence structure, and vocabulary development. The course goals for LING 136 are for students to improve their proficiency in:

  • applying sentence-level strategies while reading for comprehension, summarizing, and paraphrasing
  • applying knowledge of sentence structure to producing fluent and accurate academic writing
  • consistently utilizing appropriate vocabulary acquisition strategies
  • attending to the message in academic lectures and contributing to class discussion