EN106 First Yr Wrtng Seminar II: Academic Research & Writing

for S1T 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


S1T 2011 DLJ


Geyer, Christine


Adjunct Faculty


BA, English, University of Washington
MA, English, Syracuse University

Office Location

no physical office

Office Hours

online only: 10:30-11:30 a.m. Eastern Time, MWF

Daytime Phone




Web Page


Semester Dates

January 10 - March 6, 2011

Class Days

Online only - no class meetings


EN 105 or its equivalent

Credit Hours



From Inquiry to Academic Writing: A Text and Reader, Greene and Lidinsky, Eds., Bedford St. Martins, 2008, ISBN: 0-312-45165-2.
Portfolio Keeping: A Guide For Students, Reynolds and Rice. 2nd ed. Boston: Bedford, 2006, ISBN: 0-312-41909-7.

Easy Writer: A Pocket Handbook, Lunsford. 4th ed. Boston: Bedford, 2009, ISBN: 0-312-55425-7. 

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

Additional essays and lectures may be posted to the Document Sharing area in the course site. When such items are made available, you'll need to be able to download them, print them, or both. Additionally, Park offers the following resources to help you in your academic endeavors:

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:
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:

I believe teaching is facilitating discovery, to help students discover knowledge in ways that are meaningful and interesting to them.  I believe in co-constructed learning between student and teacher whenever possible and that as a teacher I am there to guide, to assist, and to occasionally point out the pitfalls in the path.  

I am interested in critical inquiry into just about any subject, and I try to share with my students the benefits of asking the meaning of words, phrases and visual images they hear and see everyday.  As a student, I learned to see canonical literature in modern situation comedies, to see the formulaic nature of the evening news, and pay attention to the details in advertising.  As a teacher, I attempt to share these insights and to encourage my students to ask “what does it mean” and “what would have to be true for x to happen”.  I encourage them to see beyond the immediate image or sound, to be a more attentive consumer of information. 

I try to help my students anticipate reception of their written work in various audiences.  Whether in the academy or in the world of work, students participate in several different discourse communities.  I believe it is my job to help them identify those communities, and to understand the “rules” of discourse in them.  I try to show how a text produced for a friend as e-mail may not be well received as an academic paper, or how business formality differs from academic formality.  At the same time, I encourage them to preserve their own voice in their writing, no matter the form.  I believe if I can show them that there are differences, and help them understand how the texts they produce might be received, I can help them prepare for success in whatever community they inhabit.

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 discussion assignments,
  • 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,
  • Three peer review activities,
  • A final examination.

All graded components of the course include detailed assignment descriptions and grading criteria.


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 1



Week 2



Week 3



Week 4

Peer Review


Week 5



Week 6

Peer Review


Week 7

Peer Review
Portfolio & Core Assessment


Week 8

Final Examination
Core Assessment Selection
(from portfolio)*




Late Submission of Course Materials:
Late work will be marked down one grade for every twelve hours it is late. Essays must be submitted, even if they are late, in order to successfully complete the course. Should you encounter circumstances that prevent timely submission of an assignment, communication prior to the due date may result in special consideration.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

Students are responsible for clicking on the link below and thoroughly reading each Online course policy. If you have questions about any of these policies, please contact your instructor for clarification.

Online Course Policies

Instructor Contact
Throughout the course, you will have questions about assignments and other matters. You have several channels available to you for communicating course concerns with your instructor. Email is generally the most convenient channel, but you should also take advantage of posting questions that might benefit your peers in the Office area and contacting your instructor by phone as needed. I will make every effort to respond to all messages and inquiries within 48 hours and return all formal grades within one week of the deadline for completion of the work.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:



Activities, Assignments

Week 1

Habits of Mind of Academic Writers

: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 1 & Ch. 2. In Reynolds & Rice, Part One, pp. 1-31. In Lunsford, “Find It. Fix It,” pp. 1-10.

Write: Post introduction.

Week 2

Entering Academic Conversations

: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 7; and Pratt, “Arts of the Contact Zone,” pp. 354-369. In Lunsford, “MLA Manuscript Format,” “In-text Citations,” pp. 196-203; and “Taking Notes” and “Integrating Quotations, Paraphrases, and Summaries,” pp. 182-189.

Write: Essay #1.

Week 3

Identifying Issues, Forming Questions, and Developing a Thesis

: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 4 & Ch. 5; and Loewen, From “Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong,” pp. 332-353.

Write: Essay #2.

Week 4

Finding and Evaluating Sources

: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 6. In Lunsford, “Research,” pp. 168-182; and “MLA Style, pp. 196-231.

Write: Essay #3.

Week 5

Developing and Organizing Arguments

Read/Discuss: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 9; Appiah, “Moral Disagreement,” pp. 378-389; and Foer, “How Soccer Explains the World: An Unlikely Theory of Globalization,” pp. 406-416. In Lunsford, “Language,” pp. 138-151.

Write: Essay #4.

Week 6

Responding to and Revising Arguments

: In Greene & Lidinsky, Ch. 8 & Ch. 10.

Write: Essay #5.

Week 7

Proofreading and Editing

: In Reynolds & Rice, “Putting it Together” (pp. 40-47) and “Preparing to Write the Introduction…” (pp. 48-52).

Write: Portfolio.

Week 8

Looking Ahead

: Students will read two self-selected essays from the following three (in Greene & Lidinsky): duCille, “Dyes and Dolls: Multicultural Barbie and the Merchandising of Difference,” pp. 458-47; Ignatiev, “Immigrants and Whites,” pp. 512-519; and Giroux, “Children’s Culture and Disney’s Animated Films,” pp. 567-591.

Due: Core Assessment Selections from Portfolio.

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
I am highly intolerant of cheating in any form. Your education is valuable, but not if you don't actually do the work. Do your own work, give credit to others where it is due, be forthright if you make a mistake, and treat both the material and your classmates with respect. We'll do the same for you.

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
In an online writing class, with internet resources for our research, the "shortcuts" available are many and tempting. Don't do it. Don't copy from a web page because it's easier - take the time to type it yourself. Don't copy without using quote marks and proper citation. Don't "patchwrite" - or try to take a quote, change just a few words and pass it off as your own. Remember, please, that if you could find it, I can find it, and I will, and the penalties will be severe.

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.
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 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 .
Remember that in the online environment, I can't see you or hear you or know what your situation may be. If you have a disability, whether physical or learning, please take advantage of the services available to you.

Additional Information:
Throughout the course, I will assume you will read all of the provided material - weekly overview, lectures when provided, discussion instructions, essay instructions, the grading and assessment guidelines, and all assigned reading for the week. I won't be able to tell if you have questions about the material or know if you don't understand something unless you tell me. Please ask if you have any questions, especially about assignments. My online virtual office is always available for questions and comments, and you can use the weekly discussion boards to float your preliminary ideas.

I grade assignments based in part on the degree to which your work responds to the particulars of the assignment. It's really important therefore that you understand those assignments so you'll get the best possible score. It's never dumb to ask a clarifying question. It is dumb to lose points because you didn't.


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. 


Last Updated:12/24/2010 11:45:20 AM