Background Image

CSU's English Composition Requirement

All CSU students are required to fulfill the All-University Core Curriculum (AUCC) Intermediate Writing requirement (AUCC Category 1A) prior to completion of 60 credits.  Students can complete the AUCC Intermediate Writing requirement in one of five ways:

  1. Satisfactory completion of CO150: College Composition.
  2. Achieving a score of 5 on the Advanced Placement English Composition and Literature Test; or a score of 4 or 5 on the Advanced Placement English Language and Composition Test; or placing in CO150-section 550 (credit by exam for CO150) on the Composition Placement Challenge Essay. (link to Composition Placement Essay page)
  3. Transferring equivalent credits from another college.  (Students who transfer with less than 2.6 semester credits in composition will have the option of taking the Composition Placement Challenge Essay.  With a score of 5, we can request the additional credit be waived). (link to Composition Placement Essay page)  
  4. Satisfactory completion of HONR193 (Honors students only).
  5. Submission of International Baccalaureate scores that document an English at the Higher Level score of 5, 6, or 7.

Credit for CO150 will not be given for College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) scores.

Students (except first-semester transfer and readmitted students) who have earned 60 or more Colorado State and transfer semester credits and who have not met this requirement will have a Composition HOLD placed on their record.  Transfer and readmitted students will be allowed the initial term of enrollment before this restriction is imposed.

What if I Have a Composition HOLD Placed on My Registration?

Before the start of every semester, undergraduate students are informed, via email from the Registrar, if they have not completed the AUCC composition requirement.  After a student has earned 60 or more Colorado State and transfer semester credits without fulfilling the AUCC composition requirement, the email will also give notice that a Composition Hold has been placed and provide information on how to remove the Hold.

The procedure to remove a Composition HOLD is as follows:

1.   You can contact the Registrar's Office as soon as you receive the email letting you know that a Composition HOLD has been placed on your registration – you do not have to wait for your registration access time.   

  • If you need to take the Directed Self-Placement Survey, once the Survey is completed, you can contact the Registrar’s Office.   
  • If you are in the Honors Track I program, you will need to register for HONR193.   
  • If you were automatically placed into CO130 or selected CO130 on the Directed Self-Placement Survey, you will need to select a section of that course for which to register.  After successful completion of CO130, you will need to register for CO150 the following term.   CO150 satisfies the All-University Core Curriculum Intermediate Writing requirement (AUCC Category 1A).
  • If you were automatically placed into CO150 or selected CO150 on the Directed Self-Placement Survey, you will need to select a section of that course that works with your course schedule.
  • If you were placed into CO130 or CO150 and wish to challenge that placement, you will need to complete the online proctored Composition Placement Re-Evaluation Essay (to place into CO150) or the Composition Placement Challenge Essay (to test out of CO150) as soon as possible.

 2.   Once you have chosen a section of composition that works with your schedule, contact the Registrar’s Office in Centennial Hall by calling (970) 491-4860, or emailing registrarsoffice@colostate.eduIf sending an email, please do so from your RAMS email account and include your full name, CSUID number, and the CRN for the CO course for which you want to be registered.  Please make sure to have the CRN of the section you have chosen available in order to expedite your request.

3.   The Registrar’s Office will then remove the Composition HOLD from your academic record and register you for the composition section you selected, which will allow you to proceed with registration starting on your designated registration date/time.
If a student drops or withdraws from the composition course or does not earn a passing grade, the grade of record will become an “F.”  This grade of “F” will be included in the calculation of both the semester GPA and the cumulative GPA as a consequence of not completing the 60-credit completion requirement.

CSU Composition Placement Program

Critical reading and writing skills are significant components of every program and degree at CSU.  Moreover, research at CSU, as well as nation-wide, demonstrates a clear connection between academic success and the ability to write effectively for various audiences.  The CSU Composition Placement Program is designed to ensure that you register for the composition course most suited to your needs, CO130: Academic Writing or CO150: College Composition.   

Students with transfer credit for CO150: College Composition have satisfied the All-University Core Curriculum Intermediate Writing requirement (AUCC Category 1A).  You do not need to take the Composition Placement Essay nor the Directed Self-Placement Survey.
The table below illustrates CSU’s Composition Placement procedures.  Match your highest test score (on the ACT, SAT, TOEFL IBT/PBT, IELTS or PTE) to the appropriate section of the “Standardized Test Scores” column and the corresponding “Placement Procedure” column. Note that students admitted to CSU without any test scores will place automatically into Group 3. 

To learn more about CSU’s Composition Placement Procedures, go to http://composition.colostate.edu/placement.html

Standardized Test Scores

Placement  Procedure

GROUP I: Students with

  • ACT COMPOSITE score, 26 or higher OR
  • SAT Verbal/Critical Reading score, 600 or higher OR
  • Successful Completion of CO130: Academic Writing

Automatic Placement in CO150: College Composition
Students who wish to challenge this placement and to test out of CO150 may take the Composition Placement Challenge Essay.

GROUP 2: Students with

  • ACT COMPOSITE score, 18-25 OR
  • SAT Verbal/Critical Reading score, 500-599 OR
  • TOEFL IBT Total score, 79 or higher OR
  • TOEFL PBT Total score, 550 or higher OR
  • IELTS Overall score, 6.5 or higher OR
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) – 53 or higher

 

Complete the Directed Self-Placement (DSP) Survey
The Directed Self-Placement (DSP) Survey is designed to help you

  • review your critical reading and writing practices and abilities;
  • understand what will be expected of you in CSU’s college-level composition courses; and
  • decide which composition course—CO130: Academic Writing or CO150: College Composition—is right for you.
  • the link to the Survey can be found on your homepage of RAMweb – the last bullet under the heading, Registration.

For further information go to Directed Self-Placement (DSP) Survey.

GROUP 3: Students admitted without standardized test scores, OR Students with

  • ACT COMPOSITE score, 17 or lower OR
  • SAT Verbal/Critical Reading score, 499 or lower OR
  • TOEFL  IBT Total score, 78 or lower OR
  • TOEFL PBT Total score, 549 or lower OR
  • IELTS Overall score, 6.4 or lower OR
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) – 52 or lower

Automatic Placement in CO130: Academic Writing
Students who wish to challenge this placement and to place into CO150 may take the Composition Placement Re-evaluation Essay.