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DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH

SHEPHERD UNIVERSITY

The Department of

English & Modern Languages

Shepherd University

 


Written English: ENGL 101 (Departmental Syllabus)

Course purpose and objectives: The goals for written English I are to develop students' critical reading, thinking, and writing skills. Students will be expected to read, understand, analyze, and relate selections from the Austin text to their experience and/or other ways of knowing. To help students develop critical reading, thinking, and writing strategies over the term, the Department asks teachers to present writing as a process. Ideas for brainstorming (i.e. clustering, free writing, etc.), revising drafts, editing, and proofreading should be taught. Designing a series of assignments which build upon each other (i.e. grouping assignments thematically, reading one author through another, etc.) will help students make connections and synthesize information. Students will also be expected to become familiar with expository modes of writing and rhetorical strategies. 

As a foundation for other general studies courses (ENGL 102, 103, 104), literary survey courses, and other college courses, students will learn to think and write critically; this skill includes being able to formulate a thesis (an arguable assertion supported by illustration and analysis). The Department encourages those students who write exemplary essays, using the criteria stated, to submit their work to the Catherine Fix Essay Contest. Use of the Austin text, Reading the World: Ideas that Matter is designed to introduce students to writers and ideas from both Western and Eastern traditions. Thus, the course will focus on authors of both genders and on writing from a variety of cultural and ethnic contexts. 

Because Shepherd University values the importance of computer literacy, and because the Department of English values the processes of revision and editing in writing, all essays must be computer drafted. All students must acquire a University computer account and become familiar with the three General Studies basic technology/communication requirements: 1) Internet use, 2) electronic library research, and 3) word processing. 

Essential skills and outcomes to be required through the course include:

1) an ability to render close textual analysis;

2) an ability to synthesize information from multiple texts;

3) an ability to render clear, cogent ideas;

4) an ability to structure well-developed essays, with thesis, textual support, and analysis;

5) an ability to correctly employ standard written English usage;

6) an understanding of and respect for ethnic/cultural diversity;

7) an ability to utilize basic technology to improve writing and thinking skills. 

Required texts and materials: A Writer's Reference, Diana Hacker, St Martins Press; Reading the World: Ideas that Matter, Michael Austin, Norton & Company; student computer account for use of the Knutti 206 Collaborative Learning Computer Lab. 

Essays: A minimum of six essays (at least 500 words each) are required, at least three of which will be documented essays and two of which will be in-class essays. All essays will be computer drafted, with at least one essay “workshopped” in the Knutti 206 Lab. Each essay will be graded and returned prior to the next writing assignment. 

The University Writing Center: To receive individual instruction and feedback on writing in progress, students should be encouraged to visit The Academic Support Services Center in the basement of Scarborough Library.  Visits are by appointment (via the online schedule found at www.shepherd.edu/ascweb) or through ShepOwl at http://www.shepherd.edu/scwcweb/tutorform.htm.

Appalachian Heritage Writer-in-Residence Project: Instructors of ENGL 101 are encouraged to utilize works by the Writer-in-Residence in their course and incorporate at least one of the residency events each fall into their course curriculum, as this important program presents an extraordinary opportunity for General Studies English students at Shepherd to come into contact with a regional writer of note. For information and lesson plans, see residency webpage at http://www.shepherd.edu/ahwirweb/.

Grading:  Grades awarded for essays should be consistent with the Department Grading Criteria at http://www.shepherd.edu/englweb/criteria.htm, and should follow the values: 90-100=A, 80-89=B, 70-79=C, 60-69=D, 0-59=F.   

Revision Approved 3-12-08

 

 

Prepared and maintained for the Department of English by Dr. Alan Tinkler.