Berkeley Writing Assessment: General Questions

How is the Assessment scored?

Each student essay will be read by two raters, working independently, to assign it a score from 1-6. The two scores are combined for the final score.

Who should take the Berkeley Writing Assessment?

If you do not have a qualifying exam score at this time, or a C or higher in an English Composition course completed before starting Berkeley, you should consider taking the next available assessment.

The advantage of taking the upcoming assessment is to guarantee you will have the results in time for fall semester enrollment in mid-July to best determine if you will take ...

What is the Berkeley Writing Assessment?

The Berkeley Writing Assessment is a 2-hour timed reading and writing activity done online. It is made up of a reading passage and questions that you will write an essay in response to, without the assistance of outside readings, books, websites, ChatGPT, or other people. You will also complete a survey that tells us about your experience with writing and writing classes.

Structure and Scoring of the Assessment

The Structure of the Assessment

You'll begin by reading a prose passage of 700-1,000 words. This passage will be about as difficult as the readings in first-year courses at UC Berkeley. You'll have up to two hours to read the passage carefully and write an essay in response to a single topic and related questions based on the passage's content. These questions will generally ask you to read thoughtfully and to provide reasoned, concrete, and developed presentations of a specific point of view. Your essay will be evaluated on the basis of your ability to develop your central idea, to...