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COURSE NAME: "Advanced Composition"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Summer Session II 2018

INSTRUCTOR: David Castronuovo
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: MTWTH 9:00-10:50 AM
PREREQUISITES: Prerequisite: Placement via JCU English Composition Placement Exam or completion of either EN 103 or EN 105 with a grade of C or above

This course reinforces the skills needed to write well-organized essays, focusing specifically on argumentative essays. Elements covered include thesis development, critical reading, organizing and outlining, paraphrasing and summarizing, and citation and documentation standards. Techniques of academic research and the use of the library and other research facilities are discussed. In addition to regular in- and out-of-class reading and writing assignments, students are required to write a fully documented research paper. Students must receive a grade of C or above in this course to fulfill the University’s English Composition requirement and to be eligible to take courses in English literature. Individual students in EN 110 may be required to complete additional hours in the English Writing Center as part of their course requirements.
The course examines a range of fundamental writing strategies, starting with grammar, critical reading of sources, summarizing, paraphrasing and proper quoting; it continues with the writing of a topic proposal, selection and citation of sources, literature review, and thesis development. Research and use of library resources will also be covered. Students will be required to submit assignments through TurnitinUK.
Students will leave the course knowing how to question, fruitfully, the accuracy and quality of their own writing and research methods.
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
The Elements of Style, FOURTH EDITIONStrunk and WhitePearson9780205309023 Please be sure to get the correct (4th) edition of this book. Both Amazon.it and Amazon.com sell this edition. There may also be copies available at the 'Almost Corner Bookshop.' A copy of this edition is on reserve in Frohring Library. (Please note: the edition sold as a Kindle book is NOT the correct edition; do not buy the Kindle version of this book.)
They Say / I Say, 3rd. edition Graff and BirkensteinWW NortonISBN-10: 1469028611 ISBN-13: 978-1469028613  You may use either the 3rd edition, or the 3rd edition "with MLA updates." There are copies of this book available at the 'Almost Corner Bookshop.' It can also be purchased from Amazon.com or Amazon.it (print and Kindle).

Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
Writing Academic English, 4th ed.Alice OshimaPearson Longman00000000000TXT PE1408 .H6644 2006 
Writing Academic English, 4th ed.Alice OshimaPearson Longman00000000000AWC PE1408 .H6644 2006 
They Say / I Say, 3rd. edition Graff and BirkensteinWW Norton000000000000PE1431 .G73 2017 
The Elements of Style, FOURTH EDITIONStrunk and WhitePearson00000000000PE1408.S772 
Quizzes  5%
Homework (Paragraphing) 10%
In-class Essays (2) 20%
Annotated Bibliography 7.5%
Review of Literature 7.5%
Exploratory Essay 10%
Full-sentence Outline (with Thesis Statement) Required
First Draft of Argumentative Research Paper 10%
Final Draft of Argumentative Research Paper 20%
Final Exam 10%

A Work of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the course.
B This is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
C This is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
D This level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
F This work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.


After the first class meeting, students may not use computers in class.

Cellphones must be put away during class, and may not be used for any reason. Students who use cellphones will be asked to leave the class.

Class members must submit written assignments (on Turnitin/Moodle) in docx form (not PDF).  

Class members must adhere to American (USA) standards of spelling and punctuation.

The student's attendance and participation at every class meeting is required.

After a deadline has passed, homework assignments may not be submitted for any reason.

If, due to absence, the student misses a graded, in-class activity (essay or quiz), there is no make-up; the absent student will receive a zero for graded, in-class activites that are missed due to absence.

Absences will affect the student's grade as follows. 

- First absence: final grade will be lowered by 1%. 

- Second absence: final grade will lowered by an additional 2%. 

- Each subsequent absence will lower the student's final grade by an additional 5%.

Students cannot make-up a major exam (midterm or final) without the permission of the Dean’s Office. The Dean’s Office will grant such permission only when the absence was caused by a serious impediment, such as a documented illness, hospitalization or death in the immediate family (in which you must attend the funeral) or other situations of similar gravity.  Students who will be absent from a major exam must notify the Dean’s Office prior to that exam.

Absences from class due to the observance of a religious holiday will normally be excused. Individual students who will have to miss class to observe a religious holiday should notify the instructor by the end of the Add/Drop period to make prior arrangements for making up any work that will be missed.

Absences due to other meaningful conflicts, such as job interviews, family celebrations, travel difficulties, student misunderstandings or personal convenience, will not be excused.

The final exam period runs until August 3.
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.


Week I:

Read The Elements of Style

Quizzes 1 and 2

Topic Assignment


Weekend assignment: Preliminary Bibliography (MLA style)

Week II:

Read They Say / I Say, c. 1-4

In-Class Essay #1

Quizzes 3 and 4

Annotated Bibliography (due class 4)

Weekend assignment:  Exploratory Essay (3+ pages)

Week III:

They Say / I Say, c. 5-8

Quizzes 5 and 6

Full-sentence Outline of Argumentative Research Paper (due class 4)

Weekend assignment: 1st draft of Argumentative Research Paper (5+ pages)

Week IV:

They Say / I Say, c. 9-12

Quizzes 7 and 8

In-Class Essay #2

Weekend assignment: Review of Literature

Week V:

They Say / I Say, c. 13-17

Quiz 9

Final Draft of Argumentative Research Paper (due class 4) (8+ pages)

Final Exam