Students at the University of Michigan (with the exception of College of Engineering students) must satisfy the First-Year Writing Requirement (FYWR) by completing an approved FYWR course. In addition, the Stamps School of Art and Design; the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts; and the School of Music, Theatre and Dance require students to satisfy an Upper-Level Writing Requirement (ULWR) with an approved ULWR course which must be taken at the UM-Ann Arbor campus. We strongly recommend you speak with your advisor about fulfilling these requirements.


Transfer students who have taken writing courses at another college or university may be able to use these courses to satisfy the First-Year Writing Requirement.


Transfer students should consult the list of approved courses from other colleges and universities, as well as the list of courses that are not approved, to see whether a course you completed elsewhere satisfies the First-Year Writing Requirement at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. Advanced Placement (AP), Creative Writing, or Journalism courses do not fulfill the FYWR.


If the course you completed is on the list of approved transfer courses, and you received at least a grade of C, you may have fulfilled the FYWR and may be ready to take an upper-level writing course:

If the course you completed is on the list of not-approved courses:

If the course you completed is not on the list of approved or not-approved transfer courses:

  • Complete a Petition for Transfer Course Credit to be reviewed by Sweetland
  • Complete the First-Year Directed Self-Placement or Transfer Student Directed Self Placement AFTER Sweetland has reviewed your petition and advised you which version to complete. 
Note: The review process of your petition will take up to 3 weeks once all of your materials are properly submitted. When our review is complete, we will contact you and inform you whether you should take the First-Year Directed Self-Placement or the Transfer Student Directed Self-Placement. The Directed Self-Placement must be finished 5 business days prior to your orientation. Give yourself enough time for the review process (up to 3 weeks, possibly more if materials are not submitted correctly) and to complete the Directed Self-Placement five business day before your orientation.

Please contact the Sweetland Center for Writing with any questions you have about this process.