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Module 3:  Directed Self-Placement

Now that you have a recommendation based on your Self Inventory, learn more about your options below.
Option 1 - RC 1000:  Expository Writing
  • Graded, 3-credit hour, required, academic writing course.

  • Completed during your first 30 hours at Appalachian.

  • Requires process writing, culminating in a final e-portfolio. 

  • Curriculum focuses primarily on analysis, argumentation, and academic research skills with a heavy emphasis on information literacy. 

  • Assignments require effectively focusing on one idea, developing that idea, supporting it with credible evidence, accurately documenting sources, and organizing your writing for an academic audience.

  • Most sections feature multimodal composing to prepare students for the variety of writing situations and tools they will later encounter. 

  • Some sections are themed or include a service-learning component. 

  • Ideally, a student who chooses to enroll in RC 1000 should be confident that they have a sufficient foundation in academic writing to meet the challenges and expectations of college-level writing.

Option 2 - RC 1000 + RC 2000: Expository Writing PLUS Writing Lab
  • Graded, 4-credit hour, academic writing course + 2-hour online writing lab.

  • Description above, PLUS:

    • Co-requisite writing lab allows students to receive additional one-on-one support from their writing instructor, ranging from work on sentence-level issues to holistic draft revisions. 

    • Registration approval is required to enroll in these courses.

    • Ideally, a student who chooses to enroll in RC 1000 + RC 2000 recognizes her/his ability to be successful in a college-level writing course with additional personal investment and instructor support. 

Option 3 - The Challenge Essay:  Place out of RC 1000 by Passing the Challenge Essay

The self inventory, combined with your own experiences, may help you determine that you are an experienced writer who wants to place out of RC 1000 by attempting the Challenge Essay. The Challenge Essay is both optional and free. Once you enroll via the Rhetoric & Composition website, you will gain access to materials hosted on our ASULearn site.

When can I attempt the Challenge Essay?

To register for a Challenge Essay window, click on the following link (Challenge Essay Sign-up) and sign-in to your App State account. Then, select the dates that work best for you. Remember that you must sign-up for a window prior to the Challenge going live at 8am on the first day of the window. You may register for only one Challenge period. 

Challenge Windows for Summer/Fall 2022

  • July 5, 2022 - July 9, 2022

  • July 19, 2022 - July 23, 2022

  • August 2, 2022 - August 6, 2022

  • August 20, 2022 - August 24, 2022

  • November 8, 2022 - November 12, 2022

Are There Other Resources for Determining My Placement Decision?

If you are still uncertain about which choice is best for you, please consider contacting a member of the DSP Team or reaching out to the following resources: 


  • Revisit your Self Inventory results.

  • Contact DSP in the Orientation Registration Support Center.

  • Discuss your concerns with your academic advisor during orientation sessions.

  • Email the Director of DSP, at

  • Contact Dr. Jessie Blackburn, the Assistant Chair for Rhetoric and Writing Studies, at for transfer credit/appeal questions. 

  • Contact Dr. Bethany Mannon, the Director of Rhetoric and Composition, at for general questions regarding first- and second-year writing courses. 

  • Review Information on the Rhetoric and Writing Studies’ Website.

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