About

Course Goals and Objectives

Recognizing that students who enter USCA need explicit instruction in the skills of reading and writing, the USCA Department of English has established the following Instructional Objectives for ENGL 101/102:

In ENGL 101: Instructors of record will review the writing skills necessary for composing a well-structured paragraph; teach the writing of well supported, argumentative essays and the researched paper; teach the skills of analyzing the expository essay; and introduce students to the resources of the library and computer labs.  The researched paper needs to focus on text-based argument; it must include two or more appropriate secondary sources whose selection demonstrates at least rudimentary information literacy.

Reading Outcomes: Specific reading skills will be measured as follows:

  • In ENGL 101: Students will demonstrate understanding of various types of expository prose at the levels of content (what does it say?), analysis (how does it work?) and interpretation (what does it mean?).

Writing Outcomes: In the composition sequence of ENGL 101 and ENGL 102, students will demonstrate the following skills in written communication:

  • Clarity of Purpose: Students will demonstrate the ability to establish a clear purpose (thesis or announced intent) and an appropriate awareness of audience (reader).
  • Quality of Thought: Students will demonstrate a level of rational thought that recognizes and examines complexity of ideas and is supported by credible and logical evidence.
  • Organization of Content: Students will demonstrate unity and coherence, and demonstrate effective arrangement of content, all in the appropriate support of purpose.
  • Synthesis and Integration of Sources: Students will demonstrate effective synthesis of multiple sources so that various claims, findings, and arguments are clearly and concisely presented.
  • Attribution and Documentation of Sources: Students will demonstrate accurate citations in text and in works cited / references so that readers can clearly identify and track purposeful use of source materials.
  • Language and Style: Students will demonstrate the ability to make stylistic choices in vocabulary, diction, and syntax.
  • Grammar and Mechanics: Students will demonstrate competence in grammar, usage, punctuation, and spelling

 Instructor                                                                                                                                                        

Karl Fornes

karlf@usca.edu

803-641-3706

ext 3706 on campus

Office

H&SS 208B

MTWTh 11:00am to 12:00pm

And by appointment

 Course Materials

  • Jayaraman, Saru. Forked: A New Standard for American Dining. Oxford UP, 2016..
  • Lunsford, Andrea A. Easy Writer 6th Ed.. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2016.
  • Graff, Gerald, and Cathy Birkenstein. They Say I Say: The Moves That Matter in Academic Writing 4th W.W. Norton 2018.
  • a three-ring binder with dividers to serve as your portfolio
  • Because we will use workshops in this class, you can expect to spend at least $10 on printing.

Course Policies

Due Dates: All assigned work is due at the beginning of class on the announced due date. Work not turned in then will be considered late. Unless arrangements are made with me beforehand, I expect you to turn in all of your drafts personally and will not accept a draft sent via email. Late drafts will result in the loss of two points per day on the subsequent portfolio assessment for up to five days. I will not accept nor review a draft more than five days after its due date, and the subsequent portfolio assessment will be penalized ten points.

If you know you will not be able to submit a draft on the announced due date, meet me in my office at least twenty-four hours before the draft is due. We will see about arranging an extension. I will not grant an extension without seeing some completed work. If you are granted an extension, I will place a sticky note on the draft with the extended due date and my initials. The sticky note must accompany the submitted draft. There will be no extensions on the portfolios.

Format: All submitted drafts must be word processed, double space, and printed on one side of the paper only. Each draft should have one-inch margins, left justified and be right ragged. Place your name, date and course and section number in the upper left hand corner. All drafts should have a nifty title.

Academic Honesty: Plagiarized work will receive at least a failing grade and may constitute failure for the semester. See the Departmental and Institutional Policy Sheet” (enclosed) for more information.

Attendance/Participation: Students are obligated for all assigned material whether they are present or not.  Punctual and regular attendance is necessary for the successful completion of all courses. During the fall and spring semesters, a student’s unexcused absences must not exceed twice the number of scheduled class sessions per week.
There are two possibilities for an excused absence:
1.) Medical emergency

The student must provide documentation to me in a timely fashion.
2.) Participation in a university-sanctioned activity

The student must meet with me during the first two weeks of class to discuss which days will be missed.

For absences of any kind beyond the number allowed by department policy, the student is responsible for providing sufficient justification to the instructor, who will determine if an exception can be made to the accepted policy

Students who miss a scheduled conference with me will be marked as an “unexcused” absence unless the student provides documentation in a timely fashion.

 

Every third time a student is late for class will be considered an “unexcused” absence unless the student provides proper documentation in a timely fashion.

 

Students who miss class or are late for class due to an “excused” absence may make up any reading quizzes; students who miss class or are late for class due to an “unexcused” absence may not make up any reading quizzes.

Your Work: For research, assessment, and possible classroom use, I reserve the right to copy portions of your drafts. If I use portions of your draft in class, your work will remain anonymous. If you do not want me to use any of your work in this manner, please let me know.

Classroom Deportment: Show respect for your fellow students and our classroom. Come to class on time and prepared. Stay seated at all times. Turn off all electronic devices and remain quiet and attentive while others are talking. If you have an emergency that requires you to keep your cell phone on, let me know before class. If you have a medical condition that requires you to use the bathroom during class, see me before class. Act like a human, act civilly, and don’t be a jerk.

Electronic Communication: Under normal circumstances, I check my email account several times per day and am happy to provide feedback to you. That said, I will not read and immediately delete any inappropriate email. Here are some email guidelines with which you should be familiar:

    • Use your school email account; I will not read nor respond to email from other accounts.
    • Include a clear and informative subject line; I will not read email without a subject or with vague subjects such as “question.”
    • Include a proper salutation (e.g. “Hi Professor Fornes”), your course, and your section number.
    • Do not ask for information that has already been introduced in class, such as information located on this syllabus or on assignment sheets.
    • If all of the above criteria are met, you can be confident that I read your email but do not expect a reply.
    • You are welcome to leave a voicemail. I will listen to it, but do not expect a return call.
    • Failure to follow these policies will negatively impact your participation grade.

Self-Assessments of Drafts: My overall comments on each draft will be developed as responses to your own self-assessment of the draft. To that effect, each draft submitted must include your personal self-assessment of that draft. Here are some questions to guide your self-assessments, but please tell me as much as you can about the drafting, your drafting process, etc. The more specific information you provide, the more specific feedback I can provide.

  • What do you think works about the draft?
  • How did you plan, organize, draft, revise and edit the draft? How was your writing process similar to or different from other drafts you’ve written?
  • If you had more time to revise the draft, what would you change? What would you add?
  • Why did you choose to open the draft the way you chose to open it? What about your introduction do you think will make the casual reader continue to read your draft? What do you not like about your introduction?
  • What is your thesis sentence? How did you keep the draft focused on the thesis?
  • What is your organizational strategy? Why did you shape the paper the way you chose to shape it?
  • Why did you choose the sources that you chose to include in your paper?
  • How did you decide whether to summarize or directly quote your source material? What went into that decision?

Include the self-assessment as the final page of the file associated with each assignment. The Mid-Semester and Final Portfolio include reflective cover elements and will not require a self-assessment.

The Course Web Site (http://english101.fornofrio.net): The course web site will be the “heart and soul” of the course. You should plan to check it on a daily basis—yes, even on weekends—for announcements, course materials, research assistance, etc. All students are responsible for keeping the web site conversation fruitful and dynamic.

Assessment and Grading

Participation—Blog Discussion (15% of course grade)
As noted above, we will use the class web site to discuss various readings and topics over the course of the semester. At least two days before each blog prompt is due, I will create a separate post to the course web site. Each student will then use the “comment” feature of the web site to post a response to the prompt. I encourage students to use the comments of other students in order to fashion their replies. There is no set length for comments and replies but a total of about 200 words seems to be a worthy target. All blog comments are due before class on the announced due date. (See “Attendance/Participation” and “Classroom Deportment” above for other factors in calculating your participation grade.)

 

Assessment

Each blog post will be assessed individually, normally during the mid-semester and final portfolio review, according to the following scale:

  • 5 Points—The comment(s) displays an active and critical engagement with the topic with well-chosen and attributed quotes and summaries of the readings and/or class discussion (including previous student comments). The comment is free of sentence-level errors and grammatical errors or contains so few that the casual reader does not notice them.
  • 5 points—The comment(s) displays an active engagement with the topic with quotes and summaries of the readings and/or class discussion (including previous student comments). The comment might include some sentence-level errors and grammatical errors but they are either so infrequent or unimportant that they are barely noticeable.
  • 4 Points—The comment(s) displays adequate engagement with the topic and normally includes at least some summary of the reading and/or a reference to the class discussion (including previous student comments). The comment may contain some sentence-level and grammatical errors but they are not distracting.
  • 3 points—The comment(s) does not display adequate engagement with the topics, often relying on cliché or “common sense” to avoid critically engaging with the ideas. The comment includes distracting sentence-level and grammatical errors.
  • 1-2 points—The comment(s) provides little more than an “I agree,” “I think this is interesting,” or similar off-hand responses that contain little or no thought. The comment is riddled with editing and proofreading errors.

 

Comments posted late but before the subsequent portfolio assessment can earn no more than three points. Comments posted after the subsequent portfolio assessment will not earn credit

 

Quizzes (15% of course grade: Team Quiz=5%, Individual Quiz=10%)

Students will be assigned specific passages from the book we are reading over the first couple of months of the semester and should be prepared for a quiz after each assigned reading. The quizzes will normally include five multiple-choice questions. Students will first take the quiz individually and then retake the quiz as a team. Students will be allowed to “make up” a quiz only if their absence is “excused” (see above).

 

I will drop a single individual quiz grade if a student attends an eligible workshop sponsored by the USCA Writing Room or library and provides me an error-free memo in two paragraphs. The first paragraph must summarize the workshop, and the second paragraph must describe how the student will apply what was learned in the workshop. I will stop reading and return the memo for further editing as soon as I see an error. See the course web site under “Workshops” for a schedule of the eligible workshops.

 

The Course Writing Portfolio (70% of course grade)
This class employs a portfolio approach to gathering, organizing, and evaluating your work. Your mid-semester and final portfolios will constitute the vast majority of your grade, so make sure that the portfolio process is clear to you. You will turn in a hard copy draft of each writing assignment on the announced submission dates. For most assignments, I will review your work, provide feedback, and return your drafts for revision before both the mid-semester and final portfolios. My comments on all drafts will be directed toward what you need to do to improve each one for inclusion in the upcoming portfolio assessment. Although I will provide comments over the course of the semester, I will not grade each draft. If you have any questions about your progress in the class, please make an appointment to meet with me.

 

Mid-Semester Portfolio (25%): At about the mid-point of the semester, you will submit your mid-semester portfolio for review and grading. The mid-semester portfolio will include a reflective cover letter, revised drafts of all writing assignments, and your comments to the blog prompts. It will also include earlier drafts and other notes in support of the revised drafts.

Final Portfolio (45%): The Final Portfolio will include a reflective cover paper, final versions of all writing assignments, and all of your comments to the blog prompts. It will also include everything from your mid-semester portfolio

 

Assessment

The assignments in this class are organized to present an introduction to source-based argumentative writing and information literacy. In a general sense, this class is designed to provide practice in the intellectual skills expected of an educated person in a democratic society. We will discuss specific rubrics for each assignment, but the mid-semester and final portfolios will be evaluated as follows:

A     (90+)

An “A” portfolio represents superior academic written work.

Clarity of Purpose: Each paper’s thesis is intentionally insightful and original while introducing a definite sense of purpose to a wide audience.
Quality of Thought: Each paper embraces the complexity of the issue at hand and all claims and assertions are clearly supported by logical evidence.
Organization of Content: Each paper demonstrates a clear organizational strategy in support of the paper’s purpose. Paragraphs are unified and coherent such that the reader follows a developing argument effortlessly.
Synthesis and Integration of Sources: Source material supports claims rather than controls them. Each source is relevant and effectively synthesized.
Attribution and Documentation of Sources: All source material is clearly documented both in the text and in the works cited. The in-text documentation clearly guides the reader to the appropriate source in the works cited.

Language and Style: Each paper exhibits explicit choices in vocabulary and diction and a consideration of sentence structure in its development.
Grammar and Mechanics: There are very few, if any, grammatical and sentence-level errors such that the reader barely notices them.

B     (80-85) to B+ (85-90)

A “B” portfolio represents accomplished academic written work.

Clarity of Purpose: Each paper’s thesis and purpose are insightful and clearly identifiable by the reader.
Quality of Thought: Each paper acknowledges some complexity and many claims and assertions are supported by effective evidence.
Organization of Content: The organization and structure of each paper supports its thesis and is adequately coherent and unified with explicit transitions between and among ideas.
Synthesis and Integration of Sources: Source material supports most claims rather than controls them. Although there may be some slight confusion, each source appears to be relevant and effectively synthesized.
Attribution and Documentation of Sources: All source material is documented both in the text and in the works cited. With few exceptions, in-text documentation guides the reader to the appropriate source in the works cited.
Language and Style: Stylistic and word choices support the purpose and direction of the thesis.
Grammar and Mechanics: The reader may notice some grammatical, sentence-level, and syntax errors, but those errors do not interrupt reading in any way.

C    (70-75) to C+ (75-80)

A “C” portfolio represents competent academic written work.

Clarity of Purpose: Each paper’s thesis and purpose may not be immediately apparent to the reader but manifest themselves throughout the paper. The thesis should show some insight.
Quality of Thought: Some claims and assertions include support and evidence while acknowledging other perspectives.
Organization of Content: The organization and paragraphing indicate a sense of unity and coherence in support of a purpose.
Synthesis and Integration of Sources: Most of the source material supports claims rather than controls them. Most sources are relevant and effectively synthesized.
Attribution and Documentation of Sources: Although there may be some mistakes with the format, all source material is documented both in the text and in the works cited. In-text documentation has some sort of a connection to the appropriate source in the works cited.

Language and Style: All sentences are clear and demonstrate some stylistic intention.
Grammar and Mechanics: The reader may notice syntax, diction, grammatical and sentence-level errors but not so many as to be distracting*.

D    (60-65) to D+ (65-70)

A “D” portfolio represents academic written work that requires more attention.

Clarity of Purpose: Thesis statements are not apparent to the reader or do not correspond to the purpose of the papers.
Quality of Thought: Support and evidence are not clear or do not embrace complexity.
Organization of Content: The papers lack overall organizational strategies and paragraphs include problems with unity and coherence.
Synthesis and Integration of Sources: Source material often controls claims rather than supports them. The drafts include enough long quotations to indicate the student could not properly paraphrase or summarize the material.

Attribution and Documentation of Sources: Source material is documented but has distracting errors in format and a lack of connection between the in-text documentation and the works cited.

Language and Style: The papers reflect a limited understanding of style. Sentences lack an intentional structure and word choice.
Grammar and Mechanics: The papers may be readable but contain distracting* errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, etc.

F    (<60)

An “F” portfolio represents academic written work that requires immediate and sustained attention.

Clarity of Purpose: Thesis statements are unclear or nonexistent.
Quality of Thought: The papers include little or no support for claims and assertions and fails to acknowledge the audience.
Organization of Content: The papers are disorganized and contain incoherent paragraphs.
Synthesis and Integration of Sources: Source material does not support claims or so overwhelms the draft such that the claims are not clear.
Attribution and Documentation of Sources: Source material lacks documentation and may be plagiarized.

Language and Style: The papers fail to demonstrate meaningful sentence structure or word choice.
Grammar and Style: The papers contain enough grammatical mistakes to be difficult to read.

Final Grade

Participation (blog posts)

 

15%

 

A (90+)

Quizzes 15% B (80-85) to B+ (85-90)
Mid-Semester Portfolio 25% C (70-75) to C+ (75-80)
Final Portfolio 45% D (60-65) to D+ (65-70)
    F (<60)

 

 

 

 

DEPARTMENTAL AND INSTITUTIONAL POLICIES                      Revised 8/22/2017

Prerequisites Students must complete both ENGL 101 and 102 with a grade of C or better in order to fulfill USCA general education requirements and before taking other English courses.  Any additional course-specific prerequisites will be listed elsewhere on your syllabus.

Attendance Students are obligated for all assigned material whether they are present or not.  Punctual and regular attendance is necessary for the successful completion of all courses.

During the fall and spring semesters, a student’s unexcused absences must not exceed twice the number of scheduled class sessions per week.  For Maymester, unexcused absences must not exceed one class session; for summer school, unexcused absences must not exceed fifteen percent of the total number of scheduled class sessions.

There are two possibilities for an excused absence:

  1. Medical emergency
  2. Participation in a university-sanctioned activity

Documentation for an excused absence must be provided to the instructor in a timely fashion.  For absences of any kind beyond the number allowed by department policy, the student is responsible for providing sufficient justification to the instructor, who will determine if an exception can be made to the accepted policy.

Academic Responsibility The Department of English adheres to the USCA Academic Code of Conduct (see the USCA Student Handbook for a full version).

The following statement should appear on all major examinations and assignments:

On my honor as a USCA student, I have completed my work according to the principle of Academic Integrity.

I have neither given nor received any unauthorized aid on this assignment/examination.


Signature

Plagiarism is a failure to acknowledge scholarly indebtedness. The written work offered for evaluation and credit is assumed to be the student’s own unless acknowledged otherwise. Such acknowledgment should occur whenever one quotes another person’s actual words; paraphrases or summarizes another’s ideas, opinions, or theories; and borrows facts, statistics, or other illustrative material, unless the information is common knowledge.

Plagiarism occurs when a student (1) submits words, sentences, ideas, conclusions and/or examples from a source without acknowledging the source and/or (2) submits another person’s work in place of one’s own work.  Questions about what constitutes plagiarism, including the submission of papers written for other courses, should be directed to the instructor of record.

Learning Disabilities If you have a physical, psychological, and/or learning disability that might affect your performance in this class, please contact the Office of Disability Services, B&E 134, (803) 643-6815, as soon as possible.  The Office of Disability Services will determine appropriate accommodations based on documentation.

The Writing Room  USCA provides a Writing Room (H&SS 112) to work with students at any level and in any discipline. The Writing Room is staffed by friendly USCA students who come from a variety of disciplines and who are formally trained to provide constructive feedback during all phases of the writing process. Students are welcome to drop in but appointments are recommended. The Writing Room maintains daytime, evening and weekend hours. Specific hours of operation are posted each semester.

Workshops and Review Sessions Students may be instructed to attend Writing Room workshops or review sessions conducted by professional tutors.  Attendance at such activities, which are meant to supplement the educational experience in the classroom, does not necessarily ensure an improved grade; however, failure to follow through on these referrals may have an adverse impact on the course grade.

Writing Proficiency Portfolio Your instructor values good writing in this course.  Please remember that the written work that you produce in this class can be included in your writing portfolio to be submitted in your junior year.  For further information on the portfolio requirement, please consult the WPP website (accessed from the A-Z index on the USCA homepage) or visit Dr. Matthew Miller, Writing Assessment Director.

Each student is strongly encouraged to purchase a portfolio kit in the USCA Bookstore and to begin building his/her rising junior portfolio for eventual submission during the first semester of his/her junior year.

Classroom Deportment  Please be advised that according to university regulations, “it is the instructor’s right to eject from the class any student who disrupts or disturbs the proceeding of the class.”  Furthermore, “if the student who has been ejected causes similar disturbances in subsequent meetings of the class, he/she may be denied admittance to the class for the remainder of the semester and assigned a grade of F.”

Portable Electronic Devices  The use of any portable electronic devices, including cell phones, pagers, MP3 players, iPods, etc., during class is not allowed for any reason unless prior approval has been given to a student from the instructor or unless required for the course.  If you are planning to have any of these devices in class, they must be turned off and stowed away for the duration of the class period.

 

 

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