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2018 School of Undergraduate Studies Writing Flag Award

The 2018 School of Undergraduate Studies Writing Flag Award honors the best writing produced by UT undergraduates in courses carrying the Writing Flag. Prizes will be awarded to student work that best demonstrates clarity, inventiveness, and intellectual rigor.

This award will be presented in conjunction with the University Library’s Information Literacy Award on April 4, 2019.


  • Research: Writing that uses primary and/or secondary sources to pursue an original line of inquiry—4,000-word limit. Judges in this category will look particularly for depth of scholarship, insight, and originality.
  • Persuasive/critical: Writing aims to change readers’ opinions. May or may not use outside sources —3,000-word limit. Judges in this category will look particularly for artful treatment of the subject, logic, voice, and style.
  • Creative/Reflective: Poems, plays, fiction, and creative non-fiction—3,000-word limit. Judges in this category will look particularly for inventiveness, insight, and expression.
  • Collaborative (All writing produced by more than one author must be entered in this category): Writing produced by from two to five students (all co-authors must enter online; permissions will be verified): 4,000-word limit. Prizes will be split equally among co-authors. Judges in this category will look particularly for the depth and quality of information, the clarity of the writing, the realization of the work’s intended purpose or objectives, and the cohesiveness of the entire project.


Up to three prizes will be awarded in each category:

  • First Place: $300
  • Second Place: $200
  • Third Place: $100

Submit Your Writing

Eligibility and Contest Rules

  • The judges will consider works written by any undergraduate student, submitted for credit in a UT Austin Writing Flag class in the spring, summer, or fall semester of 2018. Course(s) must be taken in residence.
  • Only one entry per student. Students must choose one category in which to enter their work. Submissions that do not meet the eligibility, formatting, and length requirements will not be considered.
  • Entries may use any citation style. Any notes that explain or comment on the main text—footnotes, annotated bibliographies, illustration captions, or appendices—must be included in the word total for the entry. References that merely provide source-locating information, like a Works Cited page, do not need to be counted in the word total for the entry. In-text citations should be included in the word count. If your work exceeds the word limit, we urge you to visit the University Writing Center in the PCL to work with a consultant there on tightening your prose. Check their schedule
  • Entries submitted after 11:59pm on Dec. 19, 2018 will not be accepted.
  • Students will indicate on the entry form that they are submitting their original and unpublished work, and that they grant permission for their work to be published by UGS and the university on its web sites and for other promotional purposes. Students will retain copyright to their work.
  • Submitted work need not be identical to the version of the work that was submitted for class credit. Students are welcome and encouraged to further revise their work in consultation with the University Writing Center before entering.

For any questions do not hesitate to contact us by email or phone at 512-471-5949.

View the 2017 Writing Flag Award Winners photos from the Ceremony held on March 23, 2018.