EN105 First Yr Wrtng Seminar I: Critical Reading,Writing and Thinking Across Contexts.

for FA 2010

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


EN 105 First Year Writing Seminar I:Critical Reading,Writing andThinking Across Contexts.


FA 2010 HOF


Dr. Lolly Ockerstrom


Associate Professor of English


M.A., Ph.D., English, Northeastern University, Boston, MA
Martha's Vineyard Advanced Institutes on Writing (Northeastern University)

Office Location

321 Copley Hall

Office Hours

M 10:00-12:00; TR 11:30- 1:30 and by appointment



Semester Dates

16 August - 10 December 2010

Class Days


Class Time

8:45 - 10:00 a.m.



Credit Hours



All of the following texts are required for En 105: 

  • Murray, Donald. The Craft of Revision. 5th edition. Boston: Thomson-Wadsworth, 2004. ISBN: 0838407153
  • Cohen, Samuel, ed., 50 Essays. 2nd edition. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2008. ISBN: 0-312-41205-3
  • Lunsford, Andrea. Easy Writer: A Pocket Reference. 3rd edition. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2010. ISBN: 10:0-312-55425-7
  • Reynolds, Nedra and Richard Rice, Portfolio Keeping:A Guide for Students. 2nd edition. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2006.
NOTE:  Easy Writer and Portfolio Keeping are also required for En106, so you are advised to keep these books for next semester.
Bring books and all needed materials to class.
Reading books, like physical exercise and a healthy diet, contribute to your overall health and well being.

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

Park University Academic Support Center (located in Mabee underground across from the library) 
Purdue University online writing lab (owl): http://www.purdue.owl.edu

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/.

Course Description:
EN 105 (C) First Year Writing Seminar I: Critical Reading, Writing and Thinking Across Contexts: An introduction to the recursive processes of writing, the course will emphasize discovery and writing-as-thinking. Students will engage various personal and academics genres, with attention to analyzing the audience and purpose for different writing situations. Course readings expose students to a variety of genres and topics from a range of cultural contexts to promote critical thinking and dialogue. Peer response, reflection and revision are emphasized through a summative course portfolio. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:

Writers learn to write by writing, by receiving feedback on what they have written, and by revising. The act of writing is both personal and communal--it is by nature a collaborative act that demands writers to interact with others. Writing requires planning, openness to discovery, imagination--and tenacity. Just keep writing, even when you think you don't have anything to say. Believe in yourself! We will workshop papers in class so you receive feedback and can discuss ideas with classmates and with me.
Writing is at the heart of a liberal arts education, and the backbone of every profession. Writing well--being able to control language in all situations, and to write with a particular purpose for a specific audience--empowers you. It is the single most important thing you can learn at the university. You will continue to learn it for as long as you breathe.
You will find that Freshman Writing is the most practical course in the university! And probably the most fun.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Apply the writing process to the creation of personal and formal essays (pre-writing, revising, editing, proof-reading, and formatting).
  2. Develop a specific theme and focus that controls and informs the paper.
  3. Develop and clarify material through the inclusion of appropriate details, examples and transitional devices.

  Instructor Learning Outcomes
  1. Write with a clear sense of audience and purpose.
  2. Write using the conventions of Standard Written English.
Core Assessment:

Every course has a Core Assessment, which is one assignment given in all sections of the course. For En 105 the Core Assessment consists of one final-draft essay from each student’s portfolio, chosen by the student, plus a Reflective Essay. Written at the end of term, the Reflective Essay must describe in significant detail the student’s strengths and a discussion of opportunities for improvement as revealed in the complete portfolio. The reflective essay must also analyze the student’s overall development as a writer over the duration of the semester/term.

Although all students in all sections will present a portfolio that includes evidence of prewriting and multiple drafts, the Core Assessment will consist only of one final-draft essay and the Reflective Essay.

Link to Class Rubric

Class Assessment:

  • Attendance and engagement (includes meeting deadlines)
  • 4 Papers
  • Writing Portfolio
  • Final Reflective Essay
 *See attendance policy much further down.


Attendance/engagement 50 points
Short presentation/analysis  25 points
Paper #1 points awarded for drafts and making deadlines  25 points
Paper #2 drafts and deadlines  25 points
Paper #3 (written in class--no points for make-up)  25 points
Paper # 4 drafts and deadlines  25 points
Portfolio 150 points
Reflective essay   65 points
Total 400 points
NOTE: No "extra credit" assignments are available.
Final Grades:
A 360-400 points
B 320-359
C 280-319
D 240-279
F Below 240

Late Submission of Course Materials:

Cultivate the habit of meeting deadlines. That's real life.
  • All assignments, including rough drafts, are expected at the beginning of class on the due dates indicated.
  • Penalty for late papers: loss of 10 points for the 1st day late (including nonclass days). An additional 10 points penalty for work that is two days late. No work will be accepted for credit after three days.
  • Final portfolios will not be accepted unless drafts in progress have been submitted on due dates; this will result in a failing grade for the portfolio. Portfolios are due on the final day of class at the beginning of class. Late portfolios will not be accepted.
NOTE: You will not be excused to run down the hall to print out your homework. Only students who arrive in class on time prepared with with work will receive full points.
SUGGESTIONS: Check the syllabus and your notes the night before class, and bring with you whatever you need. If you need to print something out, do it before class, and arrive in class on time. You will not be allowed to leave class to print out drafts; late arrival will result in lost points for that assignment. There are printers in the library, and in Thompson. Plan ahead.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

Take time to read the following. I know you don't want to hear it, but it's information you need to know regarding basic expectations for success. Remember you are now a university student, and the stakes are higher. So are the penalties. So here goes: Students are expected to do all of the following:
  1. Arrive in class on time with appropriate textbooks and written homework and prepared to participate in all class activities.
  2. Students are to be prepared with all reading and writing assignments. Do NOT ask to be excused from class to print out homework. Print out your work prior to entering the classroom.
  3. Participate fully in each classroom activity by volunteering in class discussion, group activities, and all in-class writing exercises. All students are expected to demonstrate active listening and exhibit mature behavior in class.  
  4. Show respect for all others through appropriate discourse, body language, and general demeanor. (Speak to each other and to me with respect; sit up straight--no sleeping in class; show collegiality and if you think you are not interested, learn to act as though you are. Surprise: you may find that you are very interested!)
  5. Turn off all electronic devices and stow them during class. No cell phones, no iPods, no teeny electronic anythings. The only exception: students may use personal laptops for drafting in class on writing days, but only when you are told to do so. Note that browsing the 'net during class discussion or any other activity is not acceptable, and may cost you points if you do. No need to browse the 'net in this class, anyway: you will be writing personal essays, which means you will be writing mostly from your own experience using your own ideas. Leave the online research for En 106, when you will learn how to use various search engines to find acceptable academic sources. 
  6. Leave food and drink in your room, locker, or car. Eat before you come to class. (Water is acceptable.)
  7. Students who text in class, or use computers when not given permission, will receive penalties of minus points, and will be counted absent from class. Don't worry; I will first issue a warning to you. If you then persist in texting, etc., you will lose points rapidly. I don't want that, and neither do you. So put the electronic thingies away.

Okay: having said all the nasty stuff, now hear this: In this class, expect to be amazed. Expect to learn. Anticipate pleasant and interesting experiences. Observe and listen, write and revise. Ask questions. Learn the joy of learning. Cultivate inquiry. Be aware that you get out of this class what you put into it.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

The following outline is a skeletal outline of the semester. Details will be fleshed out in class. We will add detail as we go through the course.
Week One: 17 and 19 August. Introductions. Short, in-class writing samples. Discussion of class requirements.
First Assignment: Due Thursday, 19 August: (an exercise in understanding audience and the use of conventions: 10 points) Email your Professor. Zero points for those who miss the deadline.
  • Write an email to your professor in which you ask for information regarding this class.
  • Address me by using my title ("Dear Dr. Ockerstrom"). Spell my name correctly.
  • Remind the professor that you are in one of her classes ("I am a student in your English 105 HOE course on Tuesday and Thursday.")
  • Then tell me why you are writing ("I am writing to ask..."). Use the conventions of Standard Written English. Do not text message. Consider your audience.
  • Indicate that you look forward to my response.
  • Sign off using a convention of letter writing ("Sincerely yours," "Best regards," or something similar).
  • Write your full name on the next line.
Week 2 (24-26 August) and Week 3 (31 August and 2 Sept.): Reading: Murray, Chapters 1 - 12: In class discussion and short writing exercises. Special attention to "Reading for Revision" and "Rewrite with Focus." Brainstorm for paper # 1 (open topic). (See p. 6, Murray). Submit proposal for first paper August 26. Drafts and discussion.  Bring drafts Thurs., 2 Sept.  Readings from 50 Essays announced.
Week 4 (7 and 9 September) and Week 5 (14 and 16 Sept) : Discussion of voice. Workshop papers. FIRST COMPLETE ESSAY DUE Thursday, 9 Sept. Typed and double-spaced. Standard margins. 12 point type.
Week 6 (21 and 23 Sept.), Week 7 (28 and 30 Sept), and Week 8 (Oct.5 and 7):  Begin Essay # 2 in class. Topic: Describe and analyze a time when you felt you learned something significant. What happened? What did you learn? Why should your reader care about this? Drafting, discussion. Insights. Workshop drafts. SECOND COMPLETE ESSAY DUE Thursday, 30 Sept.. Typed and double spaced, etc.
   **Fall Break: Oct 10-16.**  Have fun.
Week 9 (19 October- 21 October) - Week 10 (26 - 28 October): Short, in-class essays in response to a prompt (Essay #3). Continue short presentations (10 minutes) based on readings from 50 EssaysEssay 3 (in-class essay, topic tba)
 Week 11 (2 and 4 November) - Week 12 (9 and 11 November): Reading: Portfolio Keeping (all). Workshop Essay #3. THIRD COMPLETE ESSAY DUE ON 11 NOV. Short presentations continue.
Week 13 (16 and 18 November) - Week 14: (23 and 25 November): Workshopping, discussion of individual essays; portfolios. ESSAY # 4 WRITTEN IN CLASS: begin week 13; workshop in class; revise and turn in Nov. 23). Plan and design portfolios.  Begin Reflective Essays.
Week 15 (Dec. 1/3): Continue work on portfolios. ALL PORTFOLIOS DUE DEC. 2.
Week 16 (Dec. 6 - 10): Final exam week.

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 students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty (www.park.edu/current or http://www.park.edu/faculty/).from Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92
Do your own work at all times. Document any outside source, whether directly quoted or not.

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. from Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92-93
See also definition of plagiarism in Easy Writer.

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, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. 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".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. 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.
  6. 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.

Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95-96
Attendence in En 105 is required. Students must be in class on time and prepared with all assignments in order to be counted as present. There are NO excused absences from this course, with the exception of a dangerous snow storm that could endanger you or others.

This class meets twice weekly. This means that each class period is equal to one and one-half class periods. Therefore, the penalty for missed classes is as follows:

1 missed class: loss of one full letter grade (a grade of "A" will become a grade of of "B.")
2 missed classes: loss of two full letter grades (a grade of "A" will become a grade of "C.")
3 or more missed classes will result in a failing grade.

If you feel you have extenuating circumstances, you must arrange to meet with me to discuss your situation and present me with documentation for illness or other problems.


All athletes must present the Professor with written documentation from the coach regarding absences from class. This must be presented prior to each absence. Do not present the professor with a long list of dates. You must speak to your Professor prior to every absence and present her with documentation from your coach for every absence. Homework must be presented in advance of absences from class. Athletic events do not excuse students from meeting deadlines.

Non athletes and athletes who miss class for reasons other than athletic events must provide documentation for missed classes.

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 .


CompetencyExceeds Expectation (3)Meets Expectation (2)Does Not Meet Expectation (1)No Evidence (0)
1, 2                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
The main point, or thesis, of the essay is not only abundantly clear to the reader, but gracefully expressed in a clear, personal voice. The main point, or thesis, of the essay is clear, although could be expressed more gracefully. The voice is personal for the most part. The essay lacks a main point and instead presents several potential theses. The voice, while personal, does not always appropriately address the topic. No portfolio is turned in or guidelines are not followed. 
1, 2                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
The essay presents relevant and tasteful detail in a personal voice that supports the thesis and provides an appropriate sense of exploration of topic, with attention to ambiguities as well as certainties. The essay presents relevant detail, but needs further explanation. It is not always clear how the information supports the thesis. Ambiguities are not addressed, or are addressed within a rigid framework. The essay lacks appropriate and relevant detail, and emphasizes information rather than interpretation. Ambiguities are not addressed. No portfolio is turned in or guidelines are not followed. 
1, 2                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
Details are organized logically, and with a pleasing sense of exploration. Digressions are appropriate and add to the overall argument. Details are logically organized, but are stiff and lack a natural sense of presentation. Digressions are sometimes puzzling. The organizational plan is confusing and often irrelevant to the stated purpose of the essay. No portfolio is turned in or guidelines are not followed. 
Content of Communication                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
1, 2                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
Central topic is substantial, relevant, and creatively addressed with fresh insight. Personal experiences are appropriately discussed and analyzed to make a point. Personal voice is consistently graceful and appropriate throughout. Central topic is potentially good, but could be further developed. Personal experiences are not always relevant or adequately analyzed. Personal voice is good, but prosaic. Central topic lacks clarity. Personal experiences do not support any obvious point. The voice does not match the purpose of the essay. No portfolio is turned in or guidelines are not followed. 
Technical Skill in Communication                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Writing employs conventions of Standard Written English with grace and style. Writing employs conventions of Standard Written English adequately, with only occasional gaps. Writing shows persistent problems with the use of Standard Written English. Statements are often illogical or incomprehensible. No portfolio is turned in or guidelines are not followed. 
Understanding Audience and Purpose                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
The purpose of the essay is abundantly clear through the use of a clearly stated thesis. The writer addresses a specific audience using an appropriate level of discourse and anticipating possible questions. The purpose of the essay is essentially clear, though the thesis could be further clarified. The writer addresses a specific audience, though does not always anticipate reader's questions. The purpose of the essay remains unclear. The writer does not consider the needs of the audience and does not include appropriate discourse. No portfolio is presented or guidelines are not followed. 
Rhetorical Strategies                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
The writing presents information skillfully and uses appropriate strategies and organization. The writing presents information adequately using appropriate strategies, although the organizational plan is not always clear. The writing does not employ appropriate rhetorical strategies and lacks a clear sense of organization. No portfolio is presented or guidelines are not followed. 


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Last Updated:7/28/2010 11:07:19 PM