About Academic and Professional Writing


The Academic and Professional Writing Program at UB is more than a general education requirement—it is a gateway to critical thinking and research in the university and beyond. In our courses, students use writing as a form of inquiry and an avenue to self-discovery, a way to investigate the world and even to change it. Whatever their course of study and goals, our instructors aim to develop analytical and expressive skills that will help their students succeed in college and prepare for future roles as a member of multiple communities—civic, social, and professional. Our goal is to work with each student as an individual and to recognize and value the diversity of backgrounds, interests, and needs that student writers bring to their studies.

In our writing classes, students will engage in frequent low-stakes writing (free-writing, discovery drafts, discussion board entries, short response papers) as well as completing 25 pages of formal, revised writing. They will produce multiple drafts of each assignment and work with peers and instructors on learning to revise and edit their work. In encountering and discussing a range of analytical prose and other materials that may be molded by section-specific themes such as post-9/11 culture, witnessing war, comedy, and sports in American culture, students will also practice critical reading skills and learn to formulate significant research questions, locate and analyze source materials in the library and on-line, and examine complex problems in conversation with other researchers. Our courses involve frequent in-class activities individually or in groups, such that careful preparation of homework assignments, regular attendance, and active participation are essential to success.

Writing is challenging, exhilarating, and empowering. It persuades, informs, fascinates, and sometimes even transforms those who read it. Our goal is to help each of our students find and develop his or her writing powers.