ENGL1301 Composition I

Course Description

This course takes up the argument that in the current moment at which both political ideology and #BlackLivesMatter are foremost in the American consciousness, ignoring matters of ideology is simply no longer an option for any engaged citizen. Students will use writing to understand and interrogate how ideologies are constructed and transmitted. Through our writing assignments, we will learn to navigate an MLA format and citation conventions. Next, students will deploy these conventions to create a series of evidence sheets which will serve as bibliography-in-progress to explore ideas of interest to them before developing these ideas into an outline and policy proposal paper. Finally, students will develop a final portfolio replete with a 2-3 page introductory letter. This course will begin with the study of the background, morphology, and transmission of ideology as it relates to how we approach the world and our daily lives and provide students with the essential tools to discuss how ideologies are born and spread. This course will then allow students to consider topics of individual interest to them while they read important speeches, policy briefs, and memoirs by writers including Ayn Rand, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, and Albert Camus.

Course Credits: 3

Prerequisites: None

Student Learning Outcomes

The trajectory of this course will take you through numerous activities and assignments designed to provide practice and afford insight in order to help you gain master the following essential writing/reading/critical thinking skills divided in to three distinct outcome areas:

Outcome 1: Rhetorical Composition. You will compose texts in multiple genres, employing multiple modes of communication, and learn to do so in relation to various rhetorical situations. Through composing a variety of texts throughout the semester, you will demonstrate your understanding of audience, purpose, and constraints, use and adapt generic conventions, as well as hone your voice as an author using organization, development, style, and tone. These compositions will include: 

    • Policy Analyses and Briefs Related to Themes of the Course
    • Argument element Identification Shells which identify: Inherency, Harms Scenarios, Policy Planks, Solvency Including Internal Links, and Comparative Advantages Scenarios relative to The Status Quo.
    • Argument Response Papers utilizing MLA Conventions, Citation Styles, Integration of Quoted Evidence, and the revision process 
    • Rhetorical analyses
    • Process journaling
    • Reflective pieces discussing successes/shortcomings/future trajectory of your/peers' writing
    • Original research paper incorporating the evidence cards and arguments from weekly writing assignments
    • A letter of introduction for a cumulative portfolio curating the Assessment
    • Committee’s encounter
    • Cumulative portfolio itself
    • Personal Philosophy Assessment / Mission Statement / Personal Guiding Principle Reflection

Outcome 2: Critical Thinking and Reading Resulting in Writing. As you undertake scholarly inquiry and produce your own arguments, you will learn to summarize, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate the ideas and arguments of others. During this semester you will be bombarded by the ideas of others. You will encounter these ideas in a variety of texts both inside and outside the classroom and across various mediums--print, visual, aural, oral, etc. You will learn proper ways to ethically integrate texts written by other individuals into your own work by correctly citing and adapting. Through this you will learn how to employ writing as a tool to engage and think critically about a myriad of issues.

Outcome 3: Writing as Process. Students understand and practice writing as a process, recursively implementing strategies of research, drafting, revision, editing, and reflection. In learning about your own writing process and doing guided reflective writing about that process, you will learn to critique your work and apply those principles to works created by peers. You will also become aware that creating a successful text requires multiple drafts and intentionality concerning the deployment of your arguments’ specific efficacies.

    • Compose texts in multiple genres, using multiple modes with attention to changing rhetorical situations.
    • Summarize, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate the ideas of others as you undertake scholarly inquiry in order produce your own arguments.
    • Practice writing as a process, recursively implementing strategies of research, drafting, revision, editing, and reflection.
    • Implement reading practices specific to the genre of poetry--identifying poetic devices, terminology, metrical structures, target audience, formal qualities, sonic elements, allusive reference, historical and cultural contexts, interaction of translators and poets, and historical developments in poetry as a genre.
    • Identify arguments, claims, warrants, conclusions, impacts, and telos of a poem as well as subjectively evaluate the extent to which the author accomplishes these objectives.
    • Identify the interaction between the form and the content of a poem and describe an author’s success/failure in both of these facets and how the two relate.