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UC Entry Level Writing Requirement (ELWR)

The University of California requires all undergraduate students to demonstrate a minimum proficiency in English. This requirement must be met before enrolling in College Writing (Humanities).

For more information, please visit the Analytical Writing Program website.

How to Meet the Requirement

The Entry Level Writing Requirement can be met with:

  • Score 3 or higher on AP English exam (Language or Literature)
  • Score 5 or higher on IB Higher Level Exam in English (Language A only) 
  • Score 6 or higher on IB Standard Level Exam in English (Language A only) 
  • Approved transfer course in English Composition completed with a grade of C or higher prior to enrolling at UC San Diego
  • Passing score on the Analytical Writing Placement Exam (AWPE)

While UC will not consider SAT or ACT test scores when making admission decisions or awarding Regents and Chancellor’s scholarships, test scores can be used for course placement after you enroll. If you have a qualifying test score that satisfies the ELWR that you have not reported to UC, you can choose to do so by logging in to your UC application to self-report your scores and then arrange for the testing agency to send the official test scores to UC San Diego. 

  • Score 680 or higher on the SAT, Evidence-Based Reading and Writing
  • Score 680 or higher on the SAT, Writing section of the Reasoning Test (last administered January 2016)  
  • Score 63 or higher on the ACT, English plus Reading (effective for students entering Fall 2021)  Note: ACT English alone cannot be used to fulfill the ELWR.
  • Score 30 or higher on the ACT, English Language Arts (ELA) 

If You Do Not Meet the Requirement

Take the Analytical Writing Placement Exam (AWPE) as soon as possible.

If you pass the exam, your ELWR will be met and you can enroll in HUM 1 winter quarter. If you do not pass the AWPE, you must complete AWP 3 or AWP 4A-4B depending on your exam placement, or pass an approved English transfer course prior to starting at UC San Dego.