Some Introductory Info

First year writing courses like this one can take many different forms. This course, as you probably know, counts as the second of two courses that are meant to prepare you to be good writers throughout your college career. Courses you take later, probably as part of your major, will help prepare you for the kind of writing you will do after you graduate. In this course we will be taking a Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) focus. Or you may also think of it as a Writing in the Disciplines (WID) focus. So the main focus of the course is learning more about writing and how to become a better/more aware writer. Our focus will be on the kind of writing you will do in your discipline (think major for right now).

I'm sure when you all read the syllabus that you paid lots of attention to the Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) for the course. Basically SLOs are the things we want you to be able to do when you finish a course. Let's take another quick look at the SLOs for this course. (This info will also be useful as you complete the Reflection Journal. Another way to think about this, is that thinking about the SLOs for the course may help you to better understand why you are doing what you are doing in the course.

Student Learning Outcomes for English 1302 Upon completion of this course, students will be able to demonstrate the transfer of, deepening of, and growth in:

  • Their understanding of threshold concepts in writing studies and the five domains of knowledge about writing by applying their knowledge in composing and presenting texts for different rhetorical situations, self-assessing, and reflecting on their work;
  • Their understanding of the five domains of knowledge about writing by applying their knowledge in composing and presenting texts for different rhetorical situations, self-assessing, and reflecting on their work;
  • Planning and conducting research for specific rhetorical situations;
  • Using results of research in texts they compose and present to achieve specific purposes with specific audiences.

So what do these SLOs mean in layman's terms.

These are important concepts, so keep them in mind as we work through the course. And at the end of the course you will hopefully have "transfer of, deepening of, and growth in" knowing what they mean.

  • Another way to think about the second one is to think audience and purpose. When we write, we are writing for someone and we want something to happen. Even if we are writing for ourselves, we are trying to accomplish a purpose, maybe to remember, to organize our thoughts, or just to get things out of our minds. Since we are doing a WAC focus, our assignments will help you find information and learn more about writing in the discipline area that you will be studying.
  • For the third one, of course everyone expects to do research in a course like this, but we won't be doing the traditional "research" paper that you may be used to doing. We will do research, and practice the research process to help you learn more about how research is done in your discipline.
  • For the fourth one, the reason we do research is to discover information that we can use to achieve different purposes. So again, you will be learning about the audiences and purposes for the research done in your discipline.

Your Assignment

Read the following:

Post a response to the readings in the Blackboard Discussion Forum. Your response should include the following:

  • First tell which disciplinary area (as described in the http://wsuenglish3010.wordpress.com/course-materials/writing-across-the-curriculum-wac/ reading) you are studying. Next tell what sub-category/sub-categories you are studying.
    • For example, I study in the disciplinary area of the Humanities. The sub-category I study is Rhetoric and Composition, which is the study of the teaching of writing. I usually also introduce myself as being in the sub-category of English, since many people have never heard of the disciplinary area of Rhetoric and Composition. Some would argue that Rhetoric and Composition is a sub-category of English, but those of us in the field see it as a separate but similar area. In my teaching I work in an even more specific sub-category, which is Technical Writing. Your explanation won't be as long as mine since I've been doing this alot longer, so don't worry about that.
    • So if we were in a face-to-face class, you'd all be raising your hands about now and saying, "But Dr. G, I don't have a major." Well, the short answer is you have to pick one now. Pick a discipline area that you are interested in. It may be something we don't even have as a major here at TAMUCC, or it may be something that you won't study specifically until you go to graduate school, such as law.
  • Second, discuss at least two of the five domains of knowledge in writing (https://wiki.utep.edu/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=29655303). Talk about what you learned about each domain from the readings (all of the reading). This is just an introduction to the concepts so think of this as kind of a summary of what you learned about each domain while you were reading.
  • So you should have probably at least three paragraphs, one for each of the things you are being asked to do.
  • You can just write your info into the Blackboard posting space. It doesn't have to be anything formal. Just write about what you learned.