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Online BIS in Writing

The BIS Writing Concentration is designed for students who wish to focus on critical reading, writing and literature. The concentration prepares students for work in a variety of fields, including technical, professional, and grant writing, as well as communications, digital media, marketing, publishing, and management. It is also suitable for students who plan to pursue graduate study in writing (both creative and professional), law, and the humanities.  

Students focusing in Writing complete 18 credits of concentration courses. Students are also required to take two ISLS courses and ISIN 4510 Special Topics in Conduct of Inquiry: Social Sciences and ISIN 4520 Special Topics in the Conduct of Inquiry: Humanities, 24 credits of degree electives, Capstone I and Capstone II.

Degree elective courses must be outside of the Writing Concentration. These vary by semester and may include courses in disciplines such as anthropology, art, art history, architectural history, business, classics, drama, economics, history, information technology, music, philosophy, politics, religion, and sociology.  

BIS in Writing Courses:

  • ISHU 3130 The Writing Side of Children’s Literature
  • ISHU 3180 Roots and Stems of Effective Writing: the Essay
  • ISHU 3183 Writing the Story of Your Life: Creative Nonfiction
  • ISHU 3185 Literature About the Body
  • ISHU 3240 20th Century American Literature
  • ISHU 3251 Creative Writing: Poetry Workshop
  • ISHU 3340 Writing About the Road
  • ISHU 4190 Writing Strategies
  • ISHU 4315 The World of Jane Austen: Exploring the Novels in Historical Context
  • ISLS 3250 The Notion and the Heft of Home
  • ISLS 3300 The Poet in Society
  • ISLS 3350 Heroes and Anti-Heroes in Literature
  • ISSS 4850 Great Books in Globalization
  • ISSS 4041 Crime, Misery and Vice: the Victorian Underworld


For more information please reach out to an Enrollment Advisor. Call us at 800.346.3882 or email SCPSINQUIRY@VIRGINIA.EDU

* The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements.

Faculty Spotlight

I want my students to realize that good writing just doesn’t happen. You have to work at it.
A photograph of Charlotte Matthews

Charlotte Matthews


Charlotte Matthews is a well-regarded poet with three full-length poetry collections to her name. Also an associate professor in the BIS program, she delivers rigorous instruction in writing and revision while encouraging students to develop their own voice. In 2018, Charlotte received the Adelle F. Robertson Award, the school’s highest honor, for sustained excellence in providing new knowledge, instruction, and public service to the people, organizations, and institutions served by the University.

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It is extremely energizing to teach adult students, especially the highly motivated students in our program.
A photograph of Stephen Levine

Stephen Levine


Stephen is an associate professor in BIS, and also serves as the program director. He has been teaching courses on U.S. cultural history since 2006, and, in addition to his work as an instructor, strives to increase access and flexibility at UVA to help adult learners reach their academic goals. Under his leadership, students are now able to complete the BIS degree entirely online.

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Student Spotlight

I had always dreamed about getting a degree from UVA, but it always seemed out of reach.
A photograph of Tori Hobgood

Tori Hobgood


When Hobgood had the chance to join the BIS Alumni Board, she jumped at the chance. “I am a very proud alumna,” she says. “And I am very proud that UVA has a program for nontraditional students. Walking the Lawn at graduation was one of the high points in my life. I really wanted to give something back.”

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I'm in a managerial position now. An SCPS degree provided the foundation for advancing in my career.
A photograph of Clifton Jones

Clifton Jones


When Clifton began his academic career at UVA, it was as a biomedical engineering student in the rigorous Engineering School. Three years in, however, he realized that this field was not for him. He left Charlottesville to enter the workforce, and started applying his talents at a youth arts organization in Washington, DC. Now returning to UVA as a BIS student, Clifton is completing his undergraduate degree in his true area of interest, and is collecting skills that will help him advance his creative career.

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At orientation, everyone was kind and supportive, and they make you feel welcomed as a UVA student. You get all the services you would expect from a university like this. It is amazing.
A photograph of Jesús Pino

Jesús Pino


Jesús came to SCPS by way of his home city of Córdoba, where he developed a passion for photography as the co-founder of a bimonthly arts and culture magazine. When he relocated to the United States for his wife’s job, he decided to advance his photography and advertising career with an undergraduate degree. Now a bachelor’s student at BIS, he’s making connections, developing expertise, and gaining experience in pursuit of his dream job.

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