Advanced College Essay Nyu

Undergraduate Advisement

Welcome to NYU Steinhardt. This web page is for all of our undergraduate students. Please browse this site and familiarize yourself with the policies and procedures of the school.

As you browse, please make a note of any questions you may have and check our frequently asked questions. You should consult with your academic adviser and, of course, you may email the Office of Advisement and Registration Services if you do not find the answer to your questions. Please feel free to contact us at

About Undergraduate Study

Undergraduate study at NYU Steinhardt has a long history of connecting theory to applied learning experiences and of building communities within and beyond the classroom.  It is a combination of career preparation with the finest liberal arts education in order to provide you with the knowledge and practical education necessary to meet the opportunities of your chosen profession with the school's broad range of undergraduate programs that continually respond to advances in the fields of education, health, the arts, and communication.

Credit by Examination

The Advanced Placement Program (AP), International Baccalaureate Program (IB), and the results of country-specific maturity/exit examinations allow undergraduate students to receive credit toward the bachelor's degree subject to the approval of the school. 

The Advanced Placement Program

NYU Steinhardt will award college credit toward their degree for test results of 5 or 4 depending on the subject examination. Students receiving credit toward their degree may not take the corresponding college-level course for credit. If they do, they will lose the Advanced Placement credit. The maximum number of transferable units (credits) by examination shall not exceed a total of 32 for all applicants. For AP examination course equivalents, please click here.

The International Baccalaureate (Worldwide)

The school recognizes for advanced standing credit higher-level examinations passed with grades of 6 or 7 (no credit is granted for standard level exams).

Country-Specific Maturity/Exit Examinations for Advanced Standing Credit

NYU Steinhardt will award up to 8 units per exam to a maximum of 32 units. We will consider the following examinations for advanced standing:

Abitur (Germany)
A-Level (Singapore)
A-Level (Worldwide, other than Singapore)
Baccalaureat (France)
Cambridge Pre-U (Worldwide)
Caribbean Advanced Proficiency (CAPE)
Esame di Stato-Maturita (Italy)
Matura (Switzerland)

For all other examinations, please visit the Undergraduate Admissions National Examinations  website


New Student Seminar

During their first term (semester) in residence, incoming freshmen and transfer students must register for SAHS-UE 1 (New Student Seminar). The New Student Seminar is a zero-unit course given on a pass/fail basis, organized by major, to explore professional issues and to provide ongoing orientation and guidance for new students.

Liberal Arts Requirements - The Core Curriculum

The Core Curriculum (CORE) is an approach that immerses students in comparative, critical, exploratory, and interdisciplinary studies and seeks to build students' knowledge base through sequentially-designed courses in the liberal arts offered by the College of Arts & Science and NYU Steinhardt.

The Core Curriculum exposes students to methods of analysis and forms of expression that are the bedrock of intellectual development in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. Each major at Steinhardt requires completion of some liberal arts courses through the Core Curriculum. Core Curriculum requirements are tailored to complement coursework in the major and vary slightly by fields and programs of study.

In general, undergraduate students may use NYU study abroad coursework to satisfy the Core Curriculum and/or liberal arts and/or unrestricted elective requirements.

Steinhardt's Liberal Arts Core courses expand the selection of Core Curriculum courses available to Steinhardt students who are studying in Washington Square.

 The Core Curriculum has four components:

• Expository Writing
• Foreign Language
• Foundations of Contemporary Culture (FCC) the Humanities/Social Science sequence
• Foundations of Scientific Inquiry (FSI) the Mathematics/Natural Science sequence

Expository Writing

NYU Steinhardt students must complete two courses in expository writing and/or pass the Writing Proficiency Examination.

Freshmen students who complete EXPOS-UA 1 (Writing the Essay) with a grade of "C" or better are considered proficient and are not required to take the Writing Proficiency exam. In addition, students must enroll in and successfully complete ACE-UE 110 (The Advanced College Essay: Education and the Professions).

HEOP students (enrolled in the Higher Education Opportunity Programs) who complete WRI-UF 101(Writing I) and WRII-UF 102 (Writing II) with grades of "C" or better are deemed proficient. 

International students who complete EXPOS-UA 4 (International Writing Workshop I) / EXPOS-UA 9 (International Writing Workshop II) will take the proficiency examination at the end of their writing course sequence. If the students fail, they will be required to complete EXPOS-UA 13 (Writing Tutorial).

Transfer students must pass the Writing Proficiency Examination given by the Expository Writing Program. This exam, which is given during orientation in the spring and fall terms, determines whether additional coursework in expository writing will be required for proficiency certification. 

  • Transfer students who pass the examination and transfer in two courses in writing composition or the equivalent will not be required to complete additional course work in expository writing.
  • Transfer students who pass the examination and transfer in only one course will be required to complete EXPOS-UA 1 (Writing the Essay) as it is significantly different from most writing courses students take in two and four year colleges and provides the foundation for writing at NYU.
  • Transfer students who fail the examination and have received transfer units (credits) for either one or two courses in expository writing or the equivalent  will be required to complete EXPOS-UA 13 (Writing Tutorial) or EXPOS-UA 4 (International Writing Workshop I) as determined by the Expository Writing Program.

    Placement may vary depending on the writing issues present in the examination. Students who achieve a letter grade of "C" or above in Writing Tutorial are considered proficient. Students who do not achieve a "C" or above must take the Writing Proficiency Exam.
Foreign Language

Steinhardt students must complete the foreign language requirement of the Core Curriculum as listed on their program of study. Students are not exempt from the foreign language requirement. American Sign Language courses satisfy the foreign language requirement (course numbers ASL-UE 91 to AS-UE 95)

Placement examinations are required of undergraduate students who will register for any language in which they have prior experience (studied in high school, college or study abroad programs or who are bilingual or multilingual). The results of these examinations do not exempt students from taking these courses but assist in determining the appropriate level of courses. The placement exams are offered during the first week of classes as well as once a month throughout the term. See the placement test schedule.

Transfer students who have completed a fourth term college course in a foreign language and who wish to enroll in a literature course taught in that language must take the placement test if one is appropriate and offered. If a placement examination is not offered, consult with the language department prior to registration.

Transfer students who have completed an advanced literature course taught in a foreign language at another institution and who wish to take additional literature courses taught in the same language must consult with an adviser in the appropriate language department prior to registering for such a course.

Foundations of Contemporary Culture

The Foundations of Contemporary Culture (FCC) sequence of the Core Curriculum is a series of four coordinated areas in the humanities and social sciences. Within each of the four offerings, students are free to pursue their particular interests through their choice of individual classes. The four coordinated areas are:

  1. Text and Ideas - to engage critically with challenging works of philosophy and literature
  2. Cultures and Contexts -  to comprehend how people are different
  3. Societies and the Social Sciences - to understand how humans communicate, organize and engage*
  4. Expressive Cultures - to reveal new perspectives on the world

A  detailed description of each year's course offerings can be found on the Core Curriculum website.

*The College of Arts and Sciences no longer offers specific Societies and the Social Sciences courses. To fulfill this requirement students may select courses offered either by Steinhardt or the College of Arts and Science

Foundations of Scientific Inquiry 

The Foundations of Scientific Inquiry (FSI) component of the Core Curriculum is a series of three coordinated courses in quantitative reasoning and the natural sciences. Together these courses ensure that every student gains a fundamental understanding of how mathematics and laboratory experimentation advance scientific investigation. While some students acquire this background through other coursework, FSI courses are especially designed to meet the need of non-science students. Within each of the three categories, students are free to pursue their particular interests through their choice of individual classes.The three areas are:

  1. Physical Science (Natural Sciences I)
  2. Life Science (Natural Sciences II)
  3. Quantitative Reasoning (Mathematics and Statistics)

A detailed descriptions of each year's course offerings can be found on the Core Curriculum website.


Electives are students' choice of course work taken outside the core or liberal arts requirement, but should be discussed with the adviser. Certain restrictions must be observed and are outlined on the Program of Study. Electives may be listed under any of three categories:

Liberal Arts Electives: Only general liberal arts courses as outlined in the Program of Study
Restricted Electives: Specific non-liberal arts courses outlined in the Program of Study
Unrestricted Electives: General course permitted within the Program of Study

Specialization Requirements

General education or the liberal arts expose students to the breadth of knowledge and provides the framework for interdisciplinary inquiry. Specialization or major courses, on the other hand, presents the depth of knowledge in a discipline or field of study. Specialization courses concentrate on the skills or competencies that are required in the students' primary field of study as outlined in the Program of Study.

In CAS, for most students, EXPOS-UA 1: Writing the Essay, fulfills the Core writing requirement. EXPOS-UA 1: Writing the Essay requires frequent analytical and reflective writing, which is common in other courses throughout NYU. The writing and reading assignments are challenging for native speakers of English, and require them to develop conceptual frameworks for their arguments and ideas by working with a wide range of sophisticated and complex sources at a pace comfortable for most native speakers.

NYU recognizes that international students come with varying levels of language competency and fluency and require more time to complete challenging reading and writing assignments. For international students, there is an alternate path to satisfy the Core writing requirement. Students who qualify may substitute an alternate, International Workshop I and International Workshop II, for the writing requirement.


International students who DID attend all-English Language High Schools for four years

Depending on other admissions criteria, some international students who attended all-English Language High Schools for 3-4 years have been asked by the admissions office to take a Self Directed Placement Survey designed to determine placement. International students placed into EXPOS-UA 1: "Writing the Essay" may be uncertain about the demands of a fast-paced reading and writing course. For those students, an option is to begin with EXPOS-UA 4, International Writing Workshop 1, followed by EXPOS-UA 9, International Writing Workshop 2. The expectations for International Writing Workshop 1 and 2 are the same as for Writing the Essay, but the classes are smaller and there is more time (two semesters) to complete the curriculum. International teachers are familiar with the writing needs of English-as-a-second-language students and the cultural adjustments students may need to make as writers and students in an American university setting. The common bond that international students share—English as a second or third language—also creates a dynamic atmosphere where people from diverse cultures exchange perspectives as they read and write together. Students find the variety of global perspectives available in one classroom exciting and stimulating.

The course texts and curriculum are the same as those used in EWP’s core writing courses, and students learn the same reading, writing, and critical thinking skills. However, the final project has been shortened, allowing more time, week by week, to complete the curriculum. EWP’s Writing the Essay courses are demanding: reading and writing exercises are assigned for every class. Students are expected to be fluent speakers and to be able to write quickly and easily during timed exercises completed in-class. Our research shows that incoming NYU students who score 680 or below on the Verbal Portion of the SAT perform better in their writing courses and other classes when they take the International Workshop sequence instead of Writing The Essay.

We strongly recommend that students who score 680 or below register for the International sequence instead of Writing The Essay. We also recommend that students who score between 680 and 720 on the SAT take the self-diagnostic assessment (see the link below) to decide which course would offer the opportunity for better learning.

For help determining whether Writing the Essay or International Writing Workshop 1 is appropriate for students who did attend all-English high schools for four years, try the Self-Diagnostic Test below to see which course or sequence you would benefit from. The test consists of a typical reading and writing exercise that you might be asked to do in a Writing the Essay class. You will need to set aside thirty minutes to complete the self-assessment and to read the results.

Click here to download the instructions and to begin the self-diagnostic exercise.

Click here to download the results and discussion for the self-diagnostic exercise.

Please contact Denice Martone, Associate Director of the Expository Writing Program, if you have questions about the assessment or your results.



International students who DID NOT attend all-English Language High Schools for four years

Depending on other admissions criteria, International students who did not attend all-English Language High Schools four years have been asked by the admissions office to take a Self Directed Placement Survey designed to determine placement within the International Sequence. For these students, results of the survey may recommend placement beginning with EXPOS-UA 3, International Writing Workshop: Introduction, followed by EXPOS-UA 4, International Writing Workshop 1, and then followed by EXPOS-UA 9, International Writing Workshop 2.

The preliminary course, EXPOS-UA 3: International Writing: Introduction is taught in an environment where gaining fluency in reading, writing, and speaking in English is an expected part of the coursework, and offers the international student more time and support for reading, writing and speaking work. In Fall, after successful completion of International Writing Workshop: Introduction (EXPOS-UA 3), for the Spring term students take International Writing Workshop 1 (EXPOS-UA 4), followed the next semester by International Writing Workshop II (EXPOS-UA 9).

Students in International Writing Workshop Introduction should register for the next appropriate course (EXPOS-UA 4: International Writing Workshop 1) during the registration period in November. In December, after the course has ended, the EWP Placement Committee will determine individuals eligible to waive EXPOS-UA 4: International Writing Workshop I and proceed directly into EXPOS-UA 9: International Writing Workshop II. Those individuals will be notified before the beginning of the Spring term so that registration changes might be made. Please note that EWP cannot add students into closed sections.

Students in International Writing Workshop Introduction may not register for EXPOS-UA 1: Writing The Essay without the permission from the Expository Writing Program.

For questions about the admissions survey results, please consult with your advisor. If you have not been asked to take the admissions survey, you are welcome to take the survey that was mentioned above.


Requirements and Substitutions

Students who complete International Writing Workshop I with a C or better also fulfill the Proficiency Exam requirement.

CAS incoming students must complete International Writing Workshops I and II in lieu of Writing the Essay. Both courses are required because the research component in our Writing The Essay curriculum is taught as part of International Writing Workshop II: therefore, completing one course only does not substitute for the core. Completing both courses fulfills the Foreign Language requirement for international students in CAS.

However, there are rare cases where an international student may have a career path that does not allow the international student to fulfill all requirements and graduate on time. In these cases, a waiver of the second course may be possible only for students who entered NYU prior to Fall 2017. The decision to apply for a waiver must be made in consultation with an advisor who oversees your career path.

If you believe you qualify, click here to download the Application for Exemption from International Writing Workshop 2. Steinhardt, Nursing, and Social Work incoming students who complete International Workshop I may substitute International Writing Workshop II for Advanced College Essay. Since Steinhardt, Nursing, and Social Work require a two-semester sequence for freshmen, students from those schools are not eligible to apply to waive International Writing Workshop II.

Stern incoming students may substitute International Writing Workshop II for Business and Its Publics: Inquiry and Discourse. Since Stern requires a two-semester sequence for freshmen, students are not eligible to apply to waive International Writing Workshop II through EWP.

TSOA students need permission from the TSOA Dean to substitute International Workshops for the required TSOA courses.

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