body paragraphs ): one key aspect H u m a n i t i e s
- In this course, the student will demonstrate knowledge of individual and collaborative writing processes;
- Develop ideas with appropriate support and attribution;
- Write in a style appropriate to audience and purpose;
- Read, reflect, and respond critically to a variety of texts; and
- Use Edited American English in academic essays.
Above are the official “student learning outcomes” for this course, what the state of Texas says a student should know at the end of this course. Below these are connected to three key aspects of this course. For the final exam, students will write a three-part format essay that discusses each aspect. The writing assignment will be described in a moment. Here are the three aspects keyed to the above five learning outcomes (think of the bolded sections below as an outline for your body paragraphs):
- One key aspect of this course, probably the most important one, is learning a reliable writing format – the three-part writing format – which students can use in a variety of writing contexts. This is the way of teaching the “individual writing process” mentioned in #1 above; the writing format also helps to “develop ideas with appropriate support” as mentioned in #2 above; it helps students learn to “write in a style appropriate to audience and purpose” as #3 calls for; and it gives students a format to use when asked to “read, reflect, and respond critically” to any assignment, piece of writing, or brief communication, as #4 calls for. So, in one body paragraph of the final exam essay, students will write about how they have responded to learning the three-part writing format used in this course.
- Another aspect of this course is what the fifth learning outcome calls for: using standard American English in essays and other writing. In another body paragraph of the final exam essay, students will write about how they have responded to the need to write in a formally correct way, and how they have responded to how this course has focused on and taught this skill.
- A third important aspect of this course is teamwork. This is touched on by the #1 item above, in its call for learning about “collaborative writing processes;” it is also touched on in how students have been encouraged to consider the needs of the reader, and this part of #3 above, in the part that talks about writing “in a style appropriate to audience;” and when #4 speaks of reading and responding appropriately to “a variety of texts,” it is no great stretch to see that one sort of “text” would be the partial drafts of classmates, in the peer critiques and/or peer viewing (comparing drafts) done. In a third body paragraph of the essay, students will write about how they have responded to the various classmate-focused, collaborative parts of this course, including an less formal help they may have given and received.
To sum up, this final exam essay asks students to reflect on their experiences with three key aspects of this course: learning the three-part writing format, working to improve sentence-level writing skills, and working collaboratively with classmates. Each student will discuss each of the three above course aspects in a somewhat brief three-part, five-paragraph essay. In the introduction, the student should list these three things in a preview, probably at the end, and for the thesis, the student will sum up, in one sentence, his/her experience in this course. Then the student will write a body paragraph on each of the three above aspects. The student may talk about how well the course worked for him/her, but mainly, should talk about his/her own level of engagement and efforts in each of these three aspects. In each paragraph, include some specific illustration to nail down the point, so as to do more than merely generalize. The essay should end with a brief concluding paragraph that lists the three aspects again and sums up the thesis. Students must submit the final exam essay according to the instructions provided in Blackboard. This essay should reach a minimum word count of 800 words. This essay must meet all MLA formatting requirements as previously learned in this course, although no citations or direct quotes are required
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