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EN 311 Creative Writing
Whitesel, Cynthia


Mission Statement: The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

Vision Statement: Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.

Course

EN 311 Creative Writing

Semester

U1T 2008 DLA

Faculty

Whitesel, Cynthia

Title

Assistant Professor, English/Adjunct Faculty

Degrees/Certificates

ABD Education Policy and Curriculum Theory
MA Comparative Literature
BA Comparative Literature

Office Location

Online

Office Hours

Anytime, anywhere

Daytime Phone

610-998-0302 (home)

Other Phone

610-613-5653 (cell - not as reliable a connection as home phone)

E-Mail

Cynthia.Whitesel@park.edu

whitesel@zoominternet.net

Web Page

http://www.gothedistanceonline.com

Semester Dates

June 2 - July 27, 2008

Class Days

Seven days a week

Class Time

24 hours a day

Prerequisites

Recommended EN105 or EN106; any of the literature courses

Credit Hours

3


Textbook:

Imaginative Writing: The Elements of Craft (Penguin Academics Series), 2/E
Texbook cover

Janet Burroway, Florida State University
Publisher: Longman
Copyright: 2007
Format: Paper; 432 pp

ISBN-10: 032135740X  
ISBN-13: 9780321357403  

Textbook website: <http://www.ablongman.com/catalog/academic/product/0,1144,032135740X,00.html>

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:
Software Multimedia

  • No special software is needed

Under Course Overview, Help & Resources Link, you will find information on the two products that are free downloads.


Documents located in Doc Sharing --(Doc Sharing is a button at the top of the page in Ecollege)

Grading Rubrics

  • Rubric on Final Draft
  • Rubric on Interactive Reading Log
  • Rubric on Discussion Rubric
  • Rubric on Journal Entries
  • EN311 Webliogrpahy
  • EN311 Bibliography

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email helpdesk@park.edu or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information http://www.park.edu/Current/.
Advising - Park University would like to assist you in achieving your educational goals. Please contact your Campus Center for advising or enrollment adjustment information.
Online Classroom Technical Support - For technical assistance with the Online classroom, email helpdesk@parkonline.org or call the helpdesk at 866-301-PARK (7275). To see the technical requirements for Online courses, please visit the http://parkonline.org website, and click on the "Technical Requirements" link, and click on "BROWSER Test" to see if your system is ready.
FAQ's for Online Students - You might find the answer to your questions here.


Course Description:
Practice in various forms of imaginative writing,particularly prose fiction and drama, and lyric and narrative poetry. May be repeated with permission of instructor. Recommended prerequisite: one or more literature courses. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:

This class will help you develop your creative writing skills, and I will be your guide through this experience.  You will learn to create fictional characters and plots and settings, and to write dialogue and metaphor.  Class will focus on a myriad of small writing exercises to help you practice and learn the techniques of the craft.  As a teacher, I also know that each writer possesses a wide range of writing strengths.  As a "guide on the side” rather than a “sage on the stage," I hope to help you draw out your strengths and teach you to successfully exploit them.  I'll encourage you to develop a unique voice and spirited writing style.  I believe the best writing is clear, to the point, and vividly portrayed in concrete language.  All writers require extensive PRACTICE if they are to write well.  Therefore, we will write a lot this semester.  Writers also need to read, and I encourage you not only to complete class reading projects, but to also read a novel genre (fantasy, sci-fi, mystery, romance, etc.) you may be interested in writing, commercial or literary.
 
I believe that adults want to be responsible for their learning and are willing to be accountable to themselves and others for that learning. They understand the value of their education and have a desire to be treated fairly and respectfully in their academic pursuits. They also want the opportunity to correct their mistakes and improve their skills. While grades are measures of success and achievement, the learning is at the core value here.  

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Compose and manipulate elements of creative writing: characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, time structure and dialogue.
  2. Develop and employ a lively, descriptive style that makes use of some metaphor and symbolism.
  3. Follow the writing process, including pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, proof-reading and formatting.


Core Assessment:

  • Final creative draft that is a short story, or the start of a novel, or a collection of poems or a screenplay*

  • Informal and in-class writing

  • Journal of writing and/or reading assignments.

Link to Class Rubric

Class Assessment:

Course assessment will primarily focus on the Creative Portfolio, including the submission of a final draft and 2 practice drafts. You will also be assessed on in-class writing, an interactive reading log, a Creative Writing Journal, and a Final Exam. Below are the percentages given for each activity:

Activity

Points

 

Final Draft **

60

1 paper

Practice draft 1 **

20

1 paper

Practice draft 2 **

20

1 paper

Peer discussion

80

8 at 10 pts each

In-class writings

60

15 at 4 pts each

Journal

80

8 at 10 pts each

Peer Review

30

2 at 15 points each

Final

20

20 total pts

Total Points available

370

 

**These two elements (Creative Final Draft and Practice Drafts) comprise the core learning assessment and cover all three of the CLOs.

Grading:

Breakdown of Course Assessment:

Creative Final Draft: 60 points

The Creative Final Draft will be assessed on a scale of 15-0 in five different categories, Character, Setting, Plot, Style and Format. A score of 15 is “excellent,” a score of 0 is poor. A rubric of how the Final Creative Draft will be assessed is provided in Doc Sharing.

Practice Drafts: 2 drafts at 20 points each

When you turn in practice drafts, you will receive a full 20 points for submitting them, for a total of 60 points. This is a completion grade. If you fail to submit a practice draft, there is no make up of points. No grading Rubric is required. All drafts must be submitted in Word through the dropbox. A Word email attachment is okay, but no drafts sent as or within an email will be accepted.

You are encouraged to proofread each draft. Points may be taken off drafts that contain many grammatical errors that make it difficult to read.

Peer-Response/Discussion Threads: 8 at 10 points each

Under Doc Sharing you will find a grading rubric for peer-response/discussion. You will also find a scale of how you will be scored on this portion of the class. Also, under “Class Participation in the Online Learning Environment,” you will find my requirements for online discussions. Review those components carefully before engaging in discussion threads.

In-class Writing: 15 at 4 points each

Over the next 8 weeks, you will post a total of 15 in-class writings. You will post 2 writings a week, for a total of 8 points each week. The final week you will be required to only post 1 in-class writing worth 4 points that week. You will receive 4 points for each assignment completed, for a total of 60 points. This is a completion grade. If you fail to complete an in-class writing assignment, there is no make up of points. No grading Rubric is required.

Discussion and Reading Response: 8 at 10 points each

The Reading Discussion Thread requires you post 8 responses. Each response is worth 10 points for a total of 80 points. If your reading postings are too short or incomplete, you can lose points on them. To receive a full 10 points, you must post a response to the reading as well as post responses to classmates. You also must comment on two other students' replies. A grading rubric is available under Doc Sharing.

Peer Review: 2 at 15 points each

Peer review requires you respond, twice a semester, to a draft written by a co-student. Rubric provided below.

Creative Journal: 8 at 10 points each

The Creative Journal requires you post 8 responses. Each response is worth 10 points for a total of 80 points. If your journal postings are too short or incomplete, you can lose points on them. A grading rubric is available under Doc Sharing.

Late Submission of Course Materials:

Submission of late materials:

You will lose 2 points a day for late papers. However, if drafts are over a week late, you may get them returned without feedback. If you habitually turn in work late, you will lose 10% off your final grade.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

Classroom Rules of Conduct

· Demonstrate your leadership characteristics.

· Be courteous and respectful of all colleagues.

· Be positive and have confidence in yourself.

Class Discussions Directions

Each student brings different life experiences, points of view, and ways of knowing to our classroom and our learning environment. Everyone should plan to become an active member of the learning community.

“Participation” means

1. forming supportive and inquiring relationships with other students in the class through postings to one another, sharing points of view, and providing encouragement and constructive critique,

2. reading the assigned readings before beginning your assignments and online development, and

3. applying readings to the virtual discussions and course development.

Required discussions will take place weekly. However, you are also required to complete the Introductions discussion during week 1.

Discussions are completed in two steps

1. First you must make an online posting by Thursday at midnight of each week addressing the discussion assignment for the week.

2. Then by Sunday at midnight you must respond to another students posting.

NO late submissions are allowed.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Week

Focus

Activity

Week 1


 

Learn the Craft

Using Metaphor and Descriptions:  Learn the Craft

  • CLOs 1 and 3

    • 1 - Learn to write and manipulate elements of creative writing:  characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, suspense, and dialogue.

    • 3 - Develop methods of brainstorming and flushing out ideas and plot lines.

  • Assignments

    • 2 In-class writings

    • Creative Journal Entry

    • Reading Question

Week 2

Create A Character

Constructing a Complex and Sympathetic Character...Don't Write a Wimp

  • CLOs 1, 2 and 3

  1. Compose and manipulate elements of creative writing: characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, time structure and dialogue.
  2. Develop and employ a lively, descriptive style that makes use of some metaphor and symbolism.
  3. Follow the writing process, including pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, proof-reading and formatting.
  • Assignments

    • 2 In-class writings

    • Creative Journal Entry

    • Reading Question

    • Find proctored final exam testing site

Week 3

Conflict and Struggle

Adding Conlict and Struggle...Build Tension and Excitement

  • CLOs 1, 2 and 3

  1. Compose and manipulate elements of creative writing: characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, time structure, and dialogue.
  2. Develop and employ a lively, descriptive style that makes use of some metaphor and symbolism.
  3. Follow the writing process, including pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, proof-reading and formatting.
  • Assignments

    • 2 In-class writings

    • Creative Journal Entry

    • Practice Draft 1 due

    • Peer Review:  review two of your colleague's drafts

    • Reading Question

Week 4

Build A Plot 

Adding Crisis, Action and Resolution

  • CLOs 1, 2 and 3

  1. Compose and manipulate elements of creative writing: characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, time structure and dialogue.
  2. Develop and employ a lively, descriptive style that makes use of some metaphor and symbolism.
  3. Follow the writing process, including pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, proof-reading and formatting.
  • Assignments

    • 2 In-class writings

    • Creative Journal Entry

    • Reading Question

Week 5

Select a Setting

Employing Setting as Metaphor and Symbol

2nd Draft due

  • CLOs 1, 2 and 3

  1. Compose and manipulate elements of creative writing: characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, time structure and dialogue.
  2. Develop and employ a lively, descriptive style that makes use of some metaphor and symbolism.
  3. Follow the writing process, including pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, proof-reading and formatting.
  • Assignments

    • 2 In-class writings

    • Creative Journal Entry

    • Revised Practice Draft 1 due (counts as practice draft 2) 

    • Peer Review:  Review two of your colleague's drafts

    • Reading Question

Week 6 “Speak” Dialogue

Writing Realistic and Engaging Dialogue

 

  • CLOs 1, 2 and 3

  1. Compose and manipulate elements of creative writing: characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, time structure and dialogue.
  2. Develop and employ a lively, descriptive style that makes use of some metaphor and symbolism.
  3. Follow the writing process, including pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, proof-reading and formatting.
  • Assignments

    • 2 In-class writings

    • Creative Journal Entry

    • Reading Question

Week 7

Revise and Edit

Taking Time to Revise and Edit

  • CLOs 1, 2 and 3

  1. Compose and manipulate elements of creative writing: characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, time structure and dialogue.
  2. Develop and employ a lively, descriptive style that makes use of some metaphor and symbolism.
  3. Follow the writing process, including pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, proof-reading and formatting
  • Assignments

    • 2 In-class writings

    • Final Creative Draft Due

    • Creative Journal Entry

    • Reading Question

Week 8

Submit Your Story and Take the Final Exam

Pulling it Together in a Final Draft

  • CLOs 1, 2 and 3

  1. Compose and manipulate elements of creative writing: characterizations, setting, plot, conflict, time structure and dialogue.
  2. Develop and employ a lively, descriptive style that makes use of some metaphor and symbolism.
  3. Follow the writing process, including pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, proof-reading and formatting.
  • Assignments

    • 1 In-class writing

    • Creative Journal Entry

    • Reading Question

    • Proctored final -- 3 short essays  

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life.   Park University 2007-2008 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85-86

Plagiarism:
Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. Park University 2007-2008 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85
I do have access to a Turnitin.com account and will periodically check for plagiarism. Be aware that plagiarized papers will earn an F for the assignment with no opportunity to make up the assignment.

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  3. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  4. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  5. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  6. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  7. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.
ONLINE NOTE: An attendance report of "P" (present) will be recorded for students who have logged in to the Online classroom at least once during each week of the term. Recording of attendance is not equivalent to participation. Participation grades will be assigned by each instructor according to the criteria in the Grading Policy section of the syllabus.

Park University 2007-2008 Undergraduate Catalog Page 87-88

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: http://www.park.edu/disability .

Bibliography:
See the class Webliography for additional resources.



Rubric

CompetencyExceeds Expectation (3)Meets Expectation (2)Does Not Meet Expectation (1)No Evidence (0)
Evaluation                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
Outcomes
3,4,5                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
Revise the document 4 times over the semester (or as needed), showing definite improvements in development, focus and organization of characterization, setting and plot. Revise the document 3 times over the semester (or as needed), showing definite improvements in the development, focus and organization of characterization, setting and plot. Revise the document 1 time over the semester (or as needed), showing definite improvements in the development, focus and organization of characterization, setting and plot. Revise the draft 0 times over the semester, showing a lack of definite improvements in the development, focus and organization of characterization, setting and plot. 
Synthesis                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  
Outcomes
1,3,4,5                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              
Demonstrates use of a dominant, controlling theme/idea/focus that is clearly articulated and maintained in the voice of an invented persona/narrator throughout the paper. Demonstrates the use of a dominant/controlling theme that is adequately articulated and maintained in the voice of an invented persona/narrator throughout the paper. Demonstrates a lack of a dominant/controlling theme/idea/focus that is not articulated and maintained in the voice of an invented persona/narrator throughout the paper. Demonstrates no ability to use a dominant/controlling idea/theme/focus in a creatively written draft. 
Analysis                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
Outcomes
1,2,3,4,5                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
Composes a fictional or creative non-fictional draft for a specific audience and purpose that contains well-delineated characterization, setting and plot development. Composes a fictional or creative non-fictional draft for a specific audience and purpose that contains adequate characterization, setting and plot development. Composes a fictional or creative non-fictional draft for a specific audience and purpose that lacks characterization, setting and plot development Composes no fictional or creative non-fictional draft to be evaluated and scored. 
Application                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
Outcomes
1,5                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  
Use of transitional words and phrases imaginatively and appropriately throughout the paper. Use of transitional words and phrases adequately and appropriately throughout the paper. Use of transitional words and phrases sporadically and inappropriately throughout the paper. Use of no transitional words and phrases. 
Content of Communication                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
Outcomes
1,3,4,5                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              
Demonstrates a high degree of skill in using the writing process and a variety of creative writing strategies appropriate to audience and theme of the paper. Demonstrates adequate skill in using the writing process and a variety of creative writing strategies appropriate to audience and theme of the paper. Demonstrates a lack of skill in using the writing process and a variety of creative writing strategies appropriate to audience and theme of the paper. Demonstrates no skill in using the writing process and a variety of creative writing strategies appropriate to audience and theme of the paper. 
Technical Skill in Communicating                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Outcomes
1,4                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  
Demonstrates a high degree of skill in correctly using Standard Written English. Demonstrates adequate skill in correctly using Standard Written English. Demonstrates little skill in correctly using Standard Written English. Demonstrates no skill in correctly using Standard Written English. 

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Last Updated:5/17/2008 6:28:55 AM