Writing and Rhetoric Courses

In pursuing excellence in written and spoken communication, Swarthmore College offers several courses in Writing and Rhetoric. More

Writing Center

The Writing Center is a place to talk about writing from any discipline and at any stage of the writing process. More

Writing Associates Program

Writing Associates are peer mentors of writing who collaborate with students during all stages of the writing process across various disciplines.  More

Speaking Associates Program

Speaking Associates are WAs trained to help students with their presentations. SPAs work with students on the structure of their ideas and arguments, their oral delivery, and their visual aids.  More

Campus and Community Outreach

Campus and community outreach represents a core value of the WA Program to develop collaborative thinking in scholastic settings. More

At Swarthmore, writing is an integral part of the learning experience. Whether you are studying chemistry or art history, engineering or English, the ability to craft cogent, coherent, and intellectually rigorous prose contributes to the development of your critical thinking. Writing assignments allow you to engage with course readings, to conduct research, to use effective time management skills and to develop critical thinking in a collaborative scholastic setting.

You are not alone in the development of your writing. Through numerous interactions with faculty members and peers, you will learn how to evaluate and revise your writing, improving both the product and process—and your confidence as a writer. You will write often and in a variety of settings. You may write expository papers, lab reports, problem sets, seminar presentations, a thesis, or critiques of your peers' writing. You may also write as part of a research project with a team or a professor and as part of your extracurricular activities, internships, or campus jobs.

Writing occurs throughout the curriculum and throughout the college. As one student put it in a recent survey about why we should include writing in the curriculum:

"Writing is the culmination of understanding. You have learned about something when you can write about it. Nothing is more rewarding than producing your own work."

We hope all students experience the satisfaction of wrestling with course material to create their own understanding and writing.