EN106 First Yr Wrtng Seminar II: Academic Research & Writing

for SP 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


SP 2011 HOE


Shawver, Brian


Associate Professor


B.A. English, University of Kansas
M.F.A. Creative Writing, University of Iowa

Office Location

319 Copley

Office Hours

MW 11-12 and 3-4; T/Th 10-1

Daytime Phone

816 584-6474



Class Days


Class Time

1:30 - 2:45 PM

Credit Hours


Greene, Stuart and April Lidinsky. From Inquiry to Academic Writing: A Text and Reader. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2008.

Lunsford, Andrea. Easy Writer: A Pocket Reference. 4th Ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2010.

Reynolds, Nedra, and Rich Rice. Portfolio Keeping: A Guide for Students. 2nd Ed. Boston: Bedford/St.Martin’s, 2006.

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

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:
EN106, along with EN105, is one of the most important courses you will take in college. That’s because it will help you refine a set of skills that offers rewards in the short-term (virtually all your future classes will require you to write) and in the long term (prospective employers prioritize writing and critical thinking skills above all others). The class will underscore the importance of thinking critically, researching thoroughly, and revising extensively if you want to craft effective, persuasive writing. In doing this, it will require you to keep an open mind as you interact with voices besides your own, and to participate actively in our readings and discussions.

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:
Your class grade will be based on a 1000-point system, in which you will earn points from a variety of sources. These sources include journal exercises and writing assignments; quizzes on reading assignments; participation in class discussions (attendance is just one aspect of this grade); formal essays; and a cumulative portfolio that contains revised versions of every essay you wrote in class, plus a reflective essay on your evolution as a writer.


Here are the possible point values for the aforementioned assignments:
Participation:       100 points
Journal Work:      150 points
Quizzes:             150 points
Essay #1:           100 points
Essay #2:           100 points
Essay #3:           100 points
Portfolio:            300 points



Late Submission of Course Materials:
The policy for turning in work is pretty straightforward. All homework assignments (journals, essays, portfolios, etc.) are to be handed in to me in hard copy form at the beginning of class on the day of the announced deadline. If you don’t have a hard copy at that time, you cannot get full credit for the assignment. You may turn the assignment in to me anytime within 48 hours of the deadline for half credit. For example, if an assignment is due on Monday, January 24th, and you bring it to my office on Tuesday, January 25th, it will be graded just as every other assignment is, but only half the points will be entered into the book. If you bring me the assignment on Thursday, January 27th, you cannot get points for it.

There’s one exception to this: if you cannot be in class when an assignment is due, and you contact me in advance, we can probably negotiate a way for you to e-mail me the assignment. Please see the e-mail section of the syllabus for further details about this.
Any work that we do in class cannot be made up unless you have an excused absence. If we take a quiz when you're absent, you can't make it up. If you are tardy, and you walk in while we're taking a quiz, you may take the quiz, but you won't get extra time.

One last thing: I’d say that more than half the late work I receive is a result of students waiting until ten minutes before class to print out their work in the computer lab, then encountering some technical problem. All I can say is, if your work is not given to me when I call for it at the beginning of class (if you run in twenty minutes late, breathlessly clutching the just-printed papers, for example), then it is late. THINK AHEAD, AND PREPARE FOR THE UNEXPECTED.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
In a class that depends on sharing our personal thoughts, opinions, and writing samples, it’s very important for everyone to exhibit a high degree of respect for their peers, their instructor, and their material. I encourage you to think for yourself in this class (in fact, it’s a requirement), but this doesn’t just mean spouting your opinion. True critical thinkers and writers must be open-minded, mature, and generous. No matter what we’re doing in class, you will be expected to

            -Be honest but considerate when you respond to the work of others

            -Share your own thoughts and opinions in a reflective, sophisticated way

            -Display an interest in becoming a better writer, even when that process seems challenging or confusing

            -Ask questions when you don’t understand something

            -Avoid physical signs of disengagement (i.e., try not to slouch, go to sleep, pull your hat over your eyes, put   
             your head on your desk, conduct private conversations, etc.)

An important word on technology: Any electronic device that is brought into the classroom must be turned off before class begins (class begins when I walk into the room, not when I ask you to turn off your phones). If you need to have a device on for the reasons of disability or health, or if you need to have your phone available because you’re expecting an urgent call, please discuss it with me outside of class. In other words, no laptops, ipods, cell phones, etc.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:
This is a rough outline of what we’ll be doing throughout the semester. It is very likely to change, depending on the pace we establish, so don’t refer to it as the ultimately authority regarding what to read or bring to class.

Week One, 1/10-1/12

Introduction to the subject, overview of syllabus, exercises

Week Two, 1/19

Critical Reading—assignments from Greene/Lidinsky, first essay assignment            

Week Three, 1/24-1/26

Critical Reading continued—exercises, first essay draft work

Week Four, 1/31-2/2

Peer review, readings from Greene/Lidinsky, Easy Writer in-class work

Week Five, 2/7-2/9

First Essay Due, Green/Lidinsky readings and discussion         

Week Six, 2/14-2/16

Research and Citation—exercises from Greene/Lidinsky

Week Seven, 2/23

Research and Citation continued—readings and exercises from Green/Lidinsky        

Week Eight, 2/28-3/2

Second Essay Due, proofreading exercises, annotated bibliography discussion

Week Nine, 3/7-3/11

NO CLASS—Spring Break

Week Ten, 3/14-3/16

Exploring methods of argument, Greene/Lidinsky readings and exercises

Week Eleven, 3/21-3/23          

Green/Lidinsky readings and exercises, portfolio discussion  

Week Twelve, 3/28-3/30          

Organization—readings and exercises from Greene/Lidinsky

Week Thirteen, 4/4-4/6

Third Essay Due, proofreading and revision discussion

Week Fourteen, 4/11-4/13                   

Portfolio preparation, peer review, readings and discussion from Portfolio Keeping

Week Fifteen, 4/18-4/20          

Portfolio preparation continued

Week Sixteen, 4/25-4/27

Portfolios Due, final discussion, evaluations

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
Additional notes on absences:

You can miss two class periods without having your participation grade affected. After that, each absence will take ten points off your total participation grade (out of a possible one hundred points). After your seventh absence, you are no longer eligible to pass, regardless of your point totals in other areas. Students who are chronically late to class will also lose participation points.

You are marked absent if you are not in class when I take attendance, which usually happens about a minute or two after the hour begins. If you arrive after attendance has been taken, it is your responsibility to come up to me after class and ask me to mark you as tardy, rather than absent. If you do not do this, you will be counted as absent.

Excused absences will be determined on a case-by-case basis. They are rare, however, and usually involve things like hospital stays, funerals, et cetera, and they require documentation and advanced notice when possible.

When you miss a class, you have to find out how you should prepare for the next class (don't rely on the course outline--it will probably change). Ideally, you'll be able to contact a class member who can fill you in. If you need to contact me to ask, please make your questions very specific (“Could you tell me what book to bring, and what story I should read for Wednesday's class?” rather than “So what did I miss?”). Also, keep in mind that I may not answer right away—I generally will respond to e-mails within 18 hours.

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 .

Additional Information:

A few notes about e-mail and e-companion:

Some of our materials will be posted on e-companion, as will your assignment grades. I also will occasionally e-mail the class with updates. You certainly may e-mail me whenever you like at my park.edu account. I just ask that you follow these guidelines about e-mail:

-Certain matters are better handled in person. These include matters pertaining to absence, personal troubles, issues with another student, grade disputes, etc. In general, if a subject requires a back-and-forth discussion because of its complexity or personal nature, you should come to my office.

-Please do not e-mail me to ask what we did in class. If you ask me specifically what materials or homework you should bring for the next class, I can tell you. However, I simply don’t have time to give you a run-down on what originally took fifty minutes to explain to everyone else.

-Please do not e-mail me assignments unless you’ve received permission to do it ahead of time.

-Please keep the tone and style of your e-mails appropriate for an academic environment. This means beginning with a proper salutation (not “Hey there Prof,” but “Hello Professor,”), using grammatical English, and avoiding the abbreviations and emoticons of text-messaging.


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:12/14/2010 11:35:36 AM