EN106 First Yr Wrtng Seminar II: Academic Research & Writing

for S2A 2011

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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.


EN 106 First Yr Wrtng Seminar II:Academic Research & Writing


S2A 2011 BE


McAllister, Heather


Adjunct Faculty


M.A. English (Rhetoric & Composition) - Western Kentucky University
B.S. Social Psychology - Park University

Office Hours

By appointment



Semester Dates

March 14 - May 8, 2011

Class Days


Class Time

5:10 - 7:50 PM


EN105 or equivalent

Credit Hours



From Inquiry to Academic Writing: A Text and Reader, Greene and Lidinsky, Eds., Bedford St. Martins, 2008, ISBN: 0312451652.

Portfolio Keeping: A Guide For Students, Reynolds and Rice. 2nd ed. Boston: Bedford, 2006, ISBN: 0312419097.

Easy Writer: A Pocket Reference, Lunsford. 4th ed. Boston: Bedford/Martins, 2010, ISBN: 9780312650315.

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Additional Resources:

A pocket folder

Access to a collegiate dictionary and thesaurus.

Austin Campus Resource Room – The Austin Campus offers a selection of resources in various disciplines, including periodicals, textbooks, and computers for student use.

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 106 (C) First year Writing Seminar II: Academic Research and Writing: The course provides sustained experience with the research and writing tasks common in the academy. Students will explore various academic genres, with particular focus on learning to undertake academic inquiry: engage in close reading; incorporate research into their writing; and document sources. Peer response, reflection and revision are emphasized through a summative course portfolio. Pre-Requisite: EN 105 or equivalent. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:
Course Overview and Goals:
English 106 focuses on those writing and research tasks common to all collegiate courses, regardless of discipline. We will cover such topics as engaging in academic inquiry, developing an argumentative thesis, organizing an academic essay, documenting sources, and editing your prose.

Throughout the course we will practice what Greene and Lidinsky, the authors of our textbook, call the "habits of mind" of academic writers. Academic writers:

  • make inquiries--observe, ask questions, and examine alternatives.
  • seek and value complexity--avoid binary thinking.
  • see writing as a conversation.
  • understand that writing is a process.

Drawing from the readings included in our textbooks and from scholarly research you will locate via the Park University McAfee Library online, you will compose five academic essays, two of which will be significant revisions of earlier essays. Your work will culminate with a portfolio due in the seventh week of the course, followed by a final exam in the eighth week.

The pattern and import of your work--establishing and articulating your position in relationship to other, textually defined positions, joining in conversation with ideas--is reflected in and supported throughout our primary text, From Inquiry to Academic Writing. It is also the very sort of work you will continue to do as you pursue a field of study, establishing your own experience and expertise for your vocational and intellectual future.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Develop and maintain a controlling theme and/or focus for a research essay(s) that is fully developed in the use of details and examples.
  2. Demonstrate a range of writing activities in completing writing tasks (pre-writing, revising, editing, proof-reading, and formatting).
  3. Analyze and integrate research resources for essays based on traditional and online research, which include using appropriate documentation practices.

Core Assessment:

Every course has a Core Assessment, which is one assignment given in all sections of the course. For En 106 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:

EN 106 includes the following assessments:

  • Weekly participation,
  • Five substantial writing assignments, two of which incorporate deep revision,
  • A summative "best works" portfolio including the student's two strongest essays, artifacts related to the writing process, and a reflective introductory essay or letter,
  • Three peer review activities,
A final examination.


You will be able to track your average exactly throughout the course. The grading scale is as follows: A = 90-100; B = 80-89; C = 70-79; D = 60-69; F = 0-59. You will know in advance the standards for each assignment. My goal is to give you prompt, clear, and useful feedback to help you become a better, more thoughtful writer. 




Week 3

Essay One


Week 4

Essay Two


Week 4/5

Peer Review

Essay Three



Week 6

Essay Four (revision)


Week 6/7

Peer Review

Essay Five (revision)



Week 7/8

Peer Review

Portfolio & Core Assessment



Week 8

Final Examination

Participation (ongoing)


100 ---




Late Submission of Course Materials:
All assignments are due at the beginning of the class period on which they are noted as due on the syllabus. Generally speaking, I do not accept late work except under extreme circumstances (i.e., serious illness or traffic accident, death in the family, etc.). Documentation must be provided for such cases. However, you may make a request in advance to submit late work for other legitimate situations that arise (I will determine the legitimacy on a case by case basis).

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

All electronic devices, including cellular and handheld devices and laptops, must be shut off or silenced and stowed away throughout our class meeting. However, I will allow laptop use for some in-class work.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:



Activities, Assignments


Habits of Mind of Academic Writers

Read/Discuss: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 1 & Ch. 2. Portfolio preview. Easy Writer/MLA Workshop. Introduction to Park University online library and the Writing Competency Test (WCT).

Write: Begin brainstorming for essay one.

Week 2

?Entering Academic Conversations

Read/Discuss: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 7; and Loewen, From “Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong.” In Lunsford, “MLA Manuscript Format,” “In-text Citations,” and “Taking Notes” and “Integrating Quotations, Paraphrases, and Summaries."

Write: Essay one, due Tuesday, March 29

Week 3

Identifying Issues, Forming Questions, and Developing a Thesis

Read/Discuss: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 4 & Ch. 5; and Giroux, “Children’s Culture and Disney’s Animated Films.” Easy Writer/MLA workshop.

Write: Essay two, due Tuesday, April 5

Week 4

Finding and Evaluating Sources

Read/Discuss: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 6. In Lunsford, “Research” and “MLA Style." WCT WORKSHOP.

Write: Essay three, due Tuesday, April 12

Week 5

Developing and Organizing Arguments

Read/Discuss: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 9; Appiah, “Moral Disagreement,” and Foer, “How Soccer Explains the World: An Unlikely Theory of Globalization.” In Lunsford, “Language.” WCT WORKSHOP. Portfolio review.

Write: Essay four (revision to previously written essay), due Tuesday, April 19

Week 6

?Responding to and Revising Arguments

Read/Discuss: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 8 & Ch. 10. Easy Writer/MLA workshop. WCT WORKSHOP. Portfolio review.

Write: Essay five (revision to previously written essay), due Tuesday, April 26, and portfolio.

Week 7

?Proofreading and Editing

Read/Discuss: In Reynolds & Rice, “Putting it Together” and “Preparing to Write the Introduction…”

Write: Portfolio, due Thursday, April 28

WCT: Thursday, April 28

Week 8

?Looking Ahead

Read/Discuss: Students will read one self-selected essay from the following two (in Greene & Lidinsky): duCille, “Dyes and Dolls: Multicultural Barbie and the Merchandising of Difference,” or Ignatiev, “Immigrants and Whites."


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

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

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

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, strong voice appropriate to the topic. The main point, or thesis, of the essay is clear, although could be expressed more gracefully. The voice is appropriate for the topic, for the most part. The essay lacks a main point and instead presents several potential theses. The voice is not appropriate to the topic. No portfolio is turned in or guidelines are not followed. 
1, 2                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
The essay presents relevant and tasteful detail 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 sometimes simply tacked on without adequate discussion or sense of purpose 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 and purpose is substantial, relevant, and creatively addressed with fresh insight. Details are carefully analyzed in ways that support the thesis and reveal new perspectives. Voice is consistently graceful, strong, and appropriate throughout. Central topic and purpose is potentially good, but could be further developed. Details and examples are sometimes irrelevant or inadequately analyzed, but potentially good. Voice is good, but prosaic. Central topic lacks clarity and the purpose is not always clear. Details are irrelevant or inadequately explained. Connections are unclear.  The voice does not match the purpose of the essay. No portfolio is turned in or guidelines are not followed. 
Technical Skill in Communicating                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Writing employs conventions of Standard Written English with grace and style. Use of MLA documentation is flawless. Writing employs conventions of Standard Written English adequately, with only occasional gaps. Use of MLA documentation is fully adequate, with only occasional gaps. Writing shows persistent problems with the use of Standard Written English. Statements are often illogical or incomprehensible. Use of MLA documentation is spotty, fails to follow form, or absent from the paper. 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:2/24/2011 1:51:12 PM