COMP110 English Composition I

Department of Language & Literature: Composition

I. Course Number and Title
COMP110 English Composition I
II. Number of Credits
3 credits
III. Number of Instructional Minutes
2250
IV. Prerequisites
Writing Placement Test score of 6 or COMP107 (C or better)
Corequisites
None
V. Other Pertinent Information

  • All students planning to take COMP110: English Composition I must take the College Writing Placement Test (see exceptions in College catalog). Test times and dates when this 45-minute essay examination will be administered are listed in the course offering brochures.

  • The Department of Language and Literature has determined that all composition courses will require a minimum of 5,000 words in formal writing assignments.

  • Although revision is strongly encouraged, when revision of a graded essay is permitted to allow the student to receive a higher grade, such revision cannot be the sole basis for the course grade.

This course meets the General Education requirement in Writing.
This course meets the General Education requirement in Critical Thinking.

VI. Catalog Course Description
English Composition I emphasizes the systematic study of writing effective expository prose and argumentation, stressing development and support of a clear thesis. The focus of the course is to lay the foundation for future academic writing requirements, including the ability to analyze, synthesize, evaluate, summarize, paraphrase, and cite textual sources from required course readings.
VII. Required Course Content and Direction
  1. Course Learning Goals

    These skills will prepare students for future academic and professional writing demands, including COMP111: English Composition II.

    1. Reading: Students will be able to
      1. read and evaluate critically selections of expository prose and argumentative essays as assigned [Critical Thinking];
      2. to summarize, paraphrase, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate assigned readings; and
      3. incorporate skills learned through readings and class discussions into their own writing.

    2. Writing: Any student who earns a final grade of C must be able to produce essays that demonstrate
      1. a unified, restricted, and precise thesis that contains what Sheridan Baker terms "argumentative edge," an idea that requires analytical and inferential, as well as factual support [Writing];
      2. fully developed body paragraphs that support the thesis with clarity [Writing];
      3. critical thinking skills and analysis through substantive expository prose and argumentation essays [Critical Thinking and General Ed: Writing]; and
      4. improved writing skills in multi-paragraph compositions.

    3. Academic Integrity: Students will be able to
      1. demonstrate their understanding of plagiarism as a major concern; and
      2. identify the effects of plagiarism on the person and the community.
  2. Planned Sequence of Topics and/or Learning Activities

    1. Reading Assignments

      1. Given the inseparability of critical thinking and effective writing, instructors will assign weekly readings of an appropriately challenging nature to stimulate class discussion, to provide assignments and supporting evidence for student writing, to illustrate patterns of development, and to promote instruction in close readings of college-level texts.
      2. Instructors will teach students to summarize, paraphrase, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate readings within the context of the course, incorporating such instruction in student writing assignments.

    2. Writing Assignments
      1. Students will submit a minimum of 5000 words for evaluation. No fewer than seven separate and distinct compositions can be used to achieve this total. Revision is encouraged, but does not take the place of the minimum word requirement or the seven composition requirement.
      2. Compositions will range upward from no less than 500 words early in the term, with longer essays as the semester progresses. Of these essays, at least two must be written in class during the last half of the semester, one of which must receive a passing grade (equivalent of a C or better) for the student to pass the course.
      3. The focus of the course is to lay the foundation for future academic writing requirements, including the ability to analyze, synthesize, evaluate, summarize, paraphrase, and cite textual sources from required course readings. One personal essay may be treated during the semester.
      4. Using group process, students will learn revision techniques and learn to critique writing skills through cooperative sharing and examination of drafts or essays, thereby learning how to solve their own writing problems.

    3. Academic Integrity
      1. Students will demonstrate, in at least one required assignment, their understanding of plagiarism as a major ethical concern; and
      2. Students will identify its effects on the person and the community.
  3. Assessment Methods for Course Learning Goals

    Students will be assessed on the following:

    1. Student writing will be evaluated according to the Department's approved criteria for grading compositions in COMP110, as appended.
    2. Students will submit a minimum of 5000 words for evaluation. No fewer than seven or more than ten separate and distinct compositions can be used to achieve this total. These student essays must constitute 90% of the final grade.
    3. Compositions will range upward from no less than 500 words early in the term, with longer essays as the semester progresses.
    4. At least two essays must be written in class during the last half of the semester, one of which must receive a passing grade (equivalent of a C or better) for the student to pass the course.
    5. In their essays, students must demonstrate the ability to analyze, synthesize, evaluate, summarize, paraphrase, and cite textual sources from required course readings. One personal essay may be treated during the semester.
    6. Other evaluative tools: quizzes, examinations, journals, class participation, and other projects as specified in the individual instructor's class format. These evaluative tools shall contribute a total of no more than 10% of the final grade for the course.
    7. Students must also demonstrate their understanding of plagiarism as a major ethical concern and their ability to identify plagiarism and its effects on the student and the community through specific readings, writing assignments, and/or quizzes.
  4. Reference, Resource, or Learning Materials to be used by Student:

    The course will employ a reader that provides a substantial sampling of academically-rigorous college level writing. Excessive use of student writing, newspaper articles, and essays from popular magazines should be avoided. Anthologies should be primarily thematic in organization, and, while no one particular text is required of all instructors, text selections cannot duplicate those used for COMP107. The required anthology must be supplemented by a rhetoric, a handbook of current usage, or both. See individual course syllabi.

Review/Approval Date - 2/98; Core Goals/Objectives added 11/05; New Core 8/2015