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The Undergraduate Writing Program

Applying to Teach in the UWP for the 2021-2022 academic year

This academic year, the Undergraduate Writing Program (UWP) will hold two separate periods for graduate students to apply to teach University Writing, Columbia’s required first-year writing course. This change is designed to align the UWP’s hiring of doctoral students with the other Core courses (Literature Humanities, Contemporary Civilizations, Art Humanities, Music Humanities, and the Global Core).

  • MFA students from the School of the Arts are eligible to apply in fall 2020 for fellowships beginning in fall 2021.

  • Doctoral students from GSAS departments outside of English and Comparative Literature are eligible to apply in spring 2021 for fellowships beginning in fall 2021. 


We have archived a Zoom recording of information session from the fall for anyone interested in reviewing it. It can be found at this link: Watch Zoom recording of info session.  Representatives from the program offer an overview on how to apply and what the program involves, and take questions from applicants. 

Additional Information for GSAS doctoral students:

Eligibility (N.B.: These guidelines do not pertain to PhD students in the Department of English and Comparative Literature.)

Current 5th-year PhD students across the humanities and social sciences departments in Arts and Sciences are eligible to apply. 

PhD students earlier than year 5 must speak with their Director of Graduate Studies before applying.


  • Appointments are made for a full academic year.
  • Instructors teach one section of University Writing per semester.
  • These appointments will carry a combined stipend and salary that matches the standard compensation for GSAS teaching fellows. In addition, instructors will also receive a full tuition fellowship as well as a fellowship to cover the health fee, the student health insurance premium, the facilities fee, and, if applicable, the international fee.

Training and Development

All incoming GSAS instructors hired in spring 2021 are required to take a two-week preparatory seminar, Teaching Writing: Theory and Practice (English G6913), which meets from August 16-27, 2021. Details about the format will be forthcoming in late spring 2021. All instructors are expected to participate in ongoing staff development activities, which include small-group staff meetings and semesterly orientations.

Application Procedure and Deadline

Email as one file the following application materials in pdf format by Monday, March 15, 2021, 5pm, EST:

(The application date has been extended.)

  1. Application cover sheet; attached on the right side of this webpage.
  2. Letter of application addressed to the hiring committee that foregrounds your teaching philosophy, interest in teaching writing, relevant experience, and any diversity that you would bring to the program. If you have already applied to teach in other parts of the Core for next year, please indicate which courses. To see a list of our themed offerings and links to course descriptions, please visit the UWP homepage.
  3. C.V.
  4. An academic essay that you have written.  This sample should be no longer than 10 pages. If you wish, you may submit 10 pages of a longer paper.
  5. One letter of reference from your sponsor or DGS that speaks to your pedagogical abilities, your command of writing, and your ability to meet stated deadlines. Recommenders should email their letters to by Monday, 3/15/21 at 5pm, EST.

Your application should be sent as one file, with items 1 - 5 included in that order.  

Use the subject line: "UWP 2021-22 Application.”  

Please send your completed application to