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COURSE NAME: "English Composition"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Spring 2021

INSTRUCTOR: Aidan Fadden
EMAIL: afadden@johncabot.edu
HOURS: MW 10:00 AM 11:15 AM
PREREQUISITES: Prerequisite: Placement via JCU English Composition Placement Exam

This course concentrates on the development of effective paragraph writing in essays while introducing students to the various rhetorical modes. Elements covered include outlining, the introduction-body-conclusion structure, thesis statements, topic sentences, supporting arguments, and transition signals. Students will also become familiar with the fundamentals of MLA style, research and sourcing, as well as information literacy. To develop these skills, students will write in- and out-of-class essays. Critical reading is also integral to the course, and students will analyze peer writing as well as good expository models. Students must receive a grade of C or above in this course to be eligible to take EN 110. Individual students in EN 105 may be required to complete additional hours in the English Writing Center as part of their course requirements.
This course will take students through the various rhetorical modes of essay writing. A range of contemporary and academic topics will be discussed and analysed using essays, academic articles, film and other multimedia resources.
By the end of the course, students will be able to write academic essays using a range of rhetorical modes presenting their work in full MLA style. They will be able to evaluate and use a variety of academic and serious popular sources and cite them correctly in the MLA style both in text and on the Works Cited page. They will also be able to summarise and paraphrase material without committing plagiarism. They will also be familiar with the basic conventions of self-editing and proofreading. 
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
Essays to Research Papers (5)Meyers, AlanPearson978-0-13-291274-7  

In Class and At Home EssaysStudents will be expected to write essays of between 5 and 7 paragraphs, using cited sources and presented in full MLA style. 40%
Mid-TermStudents will write an in-class essay of 5-7 paragraphs, fully documented in MLA style.20%
Homework and Class ParticipationStudents will have regular reading, writing, and research tasks. They will also be expected to make contributions to class activities and discussion.10%
Final ExamStudents will write a fully-documented argumentative essay in full MLA style.30%

AWork 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.
BThis 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.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis 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.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

Students are required to attend class unless they have a good reason to attend virtually. Students must be on time whether they attend virtually or face to face and must use their video camera. Students who have more than four unjustified absences risk failing the course. Two lates are equal to an absence. Students must also submit all written work on time and via Turnitin (on moodle). Late submission will be subject to grade penalties at the instructor's discretion. Extensions for graded essays must be agreed in writing in advance of the submission date.
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 1-2 

Revision of paragraphs, Topic Sentences, Thesis Statements

Essay Structure - Logical Order

In class discussion

Exercises on transition words and phrases

Free-writing on the theme

Exercises or writing task

Cause and Effect - Why things Happen

Sects and Survivalists - Why people join extreme movements

 Videos and Essays (Reading)

Discussion and debate

Forming an opinion without using 'I'.

The impersonal form

Passive voice versus active voice

Cause/Effect Linking Words and Phrases

Exercises or writing task


Week 3-4

Comparing and Contrasting

Are things done differently or the same in other countries?

The Prison Question - Film and Reading

 In-class workshopping on error correction

Statistics and Facts versus Opinion


Exercises or writing task

Reviewing and Conferencing

In Class Essay

Workshopping ideas and peer editing

Exercises or writing task

Week 5-6

Summaries and Paraphrases - Reading to understand and Explain

An Introduction to Argument

Why do we argue? What do we argue about?

Vegetarianism and Veganism.

 Avoiding Plagiarism

 Finding and Using Sources

 Direct Quotations and Punctuation

Exercises or writing task

An Introduction to Argument: Why and how do we argue? 

Winning and losing arguments

Losing can mean winning... How?

Class discussions

Exercises or writing task

Week 7-8

The Classical Rhetorical Model for argumentative Essays.

Thorny issues and contemporary controversies.

'Frankenstein' Science / Gender / Identity / Death Penalty


Anticipating and rebutting opposing views

Forming strong thesis statements using subordinating clauses

Exercises or writing task

Model Essays

Looking at Best Practices and Learning from Others

Argumentative Paragraph Structure

Citations and Works Cited Lists (MLA)

Exercises or writing task

Week 9-10

In class Essay

Exercises or writing task

Other approaches to argumentation. Empathic listening. The Rogerian Model.

Arguing one of the topics differently.


Summary and Paraphrase

Using other people’s arguments to strengthen yours

Avoiding plagiarism

Exercises or writing task

Week 11-12

Review and conferencing. Preparing for end of course Exam.