Category: lectures

Reducing Wordiness

First, imagine that you have just been assigned to write a paper on the topic, “what I did over summer vacation.” The paper is due in two weeks. What’s the next thing you want to know? If you said “how…

Fallacious Reasoning

Many arguments contain what we call fallacies. Whether they are used deliberately or not, fallacies are perhaps best understood as little tricks that make an argument seem sound when the claims are actually weak. As you begin to analyze others’…

Tense and Tense Shifts

Tense problems are among the more distracting errors we find with the writing of inexperienced writers. It is often difficult to determine when to use the present tense of verbs and when to use the past tense of verbs. As…

Coordination and Subordination

After you edit your sentences to make them more concise, the next step will be to combine ideas that are best considered in a single sentence. (For example, the previous sentence originally may have been “Edit your sentences to make…

Wynton Marsalis on Rhetoric

I enjoy how Wynton Marsalis applies Aristotle’s ethos, pathos, and logos in a musical context. Wynton Marsalis // Moving to Higher Ground // Aristotle’s Appeals from Tutti Dynamics on Vimeo.

Getting Started with Research

When confronted with a research project, many students make the research step one. As a result, they will jump on Google or Bing or Wikipedia, type in the topic as a search term, and click aimlessly at the suggested links.…

Sentence Structures

A sentence consists of a subject (noun phrase) and a predicate (verb phrase). When a sentence includes one noun phrase and one verb phrase, we call it a simple sentence. Often, however, we will want to combine ideas into a…

Description

One of the marks of experienced writers is the ability to include purposefully-chosen specific details to create an overall impression for the audience. In doing so, they will draw on all of the senses to create that concrete impression in…