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The Writing Program Undergraduate Studies

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Directed Self-Placement

The Directed Self-Placement (DSP) is a a series of online activities designed to help entering students determine which first-year composition course is the right choice for them.

How do I complete DSP?

You will read information about Directed Self-Placement, our composition course offerings, and how we view academic reading and writing. You will then complete four reading, writing, and self-reflective activities.

We believe these activities will take about 1-2 hours of your time. Once you complete this work, you will select which first-year writing course best meets your needs. Your choice will be used to inform the structure of your class schedule.

DSP Canvas course will be available beginning March 15, 2024.

Begin by logging into Canvas

The deadline to complete DSP in Canvas is June 7, 2024.

For more information about course selection, please visit the Hornet Launch Website.

Please watch this brief video for more information about DSP

Am I required to participate in Directed Self-Placement?

  • Yes! All first time freshmen must participate in Directed Self-Placement.
  • The directed self placement activities are available now. You will log into your MySacState and access the activities in a Canvas course.
  • Please plan to complete these activities as soon as possible.

You will need to log in to your My Sac State. You will find a DSP course in your Canvas course account.


Please email

Am I exempt from completing DSP?

Only a small number of students will be exempt from the Directed Self Placement Activities. The following students may be exempt:

  • Students who earned of score of 3 or above on either the Language and Composition or Composition and Literature examination of the College Board Scholastic Advanced Placement Program (AP exam)
  • Students who took a college-level English course (this does not include high school AP English) and earned a C- or better in a course equivalent to CSUS ENGL 5.

We ask that all students complete DSP, even if you are waiting for exam scores or transfer credit.


Please email