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Common Reading Program Division of Academic Engagement and Student Achievement

About the Common Reading Program

We foster community by creating connections among students, professors, residence hall staff, and others through the shared reading of a thought-provoking book.

A single book is chosen by the university to be read by all freshmen. This “common reading” is then used in their courses and in special programs outside of classes. Students’ professors, residence hall staff, librarians, and other members of the university community contribute ideas and actions that bring topics raised in the book to life. And because many WSU faculty members are leading researchers in their fields, they share information from their work with students that ties to the book typically at guest expert lectures, which occur outside of regular class times.

Through these uniquely shared experiences, the common reading introduces freshmen to the:

  • Value of research.
  • Power of ideas.
  • Various but interconnected ways in which disciplines across our academic institution approach similar problems.

How We Select the Next Common Reading Book at WSU

The Common Reading Selection Committee typically accepts many nominations from the WSU community in fall semester, and then its members carefully review each nominated book. The Provost and Executive Vice President typically makes the final selection, and the title of the next Common Reading book is announced early in spring semester.

Banner image constructed from covers of recent Common Reading booksWe Do Much More than Read Books

The WSU Common Reading Program creates a common academic ground and dialogue for all participants—new students, faculty, staff, and the community centered around them. Programming around topics raised by the common reading book helps students realize the scope and innovative quality of the world-class research underway at Washington State University. Banner image constructed from covers of recent Common Reading books

About Our Director

Karen Weathermon…