Instructor: P. Aaron Potter
Course Description :
You are a writer. You are a reader. Throughout this course, throughout the remainder of your education, and for the rest of your life, you will continue to develop your already considerable skills in comprehension, evaluation, organization, and communication. English 1A is designed to exercise those skills in order that you may participate in the intellectual discussions which will characterize your university life. Although the readings and writing assignments in this class are largely undertaken from a personal and autobiographical perspective, the methods we will cover are meant to serve as a foundation for those skills which are necessary for coherent, well-developed writing appropriate to an academic setting and beyond.
Required Texts :
Students are responsible for arriving in class on-time and prepared, which includes responsibility for all assigned readings on the dates indicated in the schedule. All papers and drafts of papers are due at the beginning of class on the due date indicated. In addition, occasional in-class exercises and quizzes will be assigned, and are factored into the final grade as indicated below. It should be noted that showing up for class on time and prepared is considered *minimally* adequate behavior for a college-level class, and thus merits a *C* grade. Active participation in classroom discussion is essential to earning a higher grade in the participation category.
Grading / Policies :
Essays #1 - 3 -- 30% (10% each)
Essays #1 - 2 -- 40% (20% each)
Examination -- 20%
Failure to turn in *one* assignment results in a zero ("F") for that assignment. Failure to turn in *two* assignments results in a zero for those assignments *and* a zero for the participation section of the grade. Failure to turn in *three* or more assignments results in an automatic failing grade in the class.
Late papers are automatically graded one full letter grade lower than they would otherwise have merited (an "A" turns into a "B," for example). An additional one-third letter grade is deducted for each additional day (not class day, but every day) that the assignment remains outstanding (that is, from a "B" to a "B-" to a "C+" and so on). If the assignment is as much as a week overdue, then it counts as not being handed in, per the policy above.
All essays should be typed and double-spaced, with approximately 1 - 1.5 inch margins on all sides, in a 12 point font (Times New Roman or a similar ‘standard’ font is strongly preferred). College level papers are thoroughly formal documents : spelling and grammar are important components of your writing, and I urge you to proofread carefully! Feel free to use a spell-checker, but don’t let it do your thinking for you. Please do *not* rely upon your word processor's grammar checking functions -- all of those currently available are worse than useless. For more information on paper format, see the class web-pages and follow the link to the "style guide."
Papers which are shorter than the required minimum will automatically be given a failing grade. Please note that one sentence does not constitute a "page" of writing -- the writing should extend at least half-way down the page for it to be counted towards the minimum length requirements. Material from other sources *does not count* towards the minimum page length.
“Brief Essays” should be two to three pages in length. “Long Essays” should be between five and eight pages.
This class adheres strictly to the University policy on academic dishonesty. Please note that any uncited use of material from an outside source, whether direct quotations or essential ideas, constitutes plagiarism. This includes material you have previously submitted to other classes here or elsewhere, as well as any websites or other sources consulted at any point during the composition process. Note that it makes absolutely no difference whether you intended to plagiarize material or merely forgot to cite your sources; both cases present other people’s work as though it were your own, and therefore constitute plagiarism under university policy. Papers which are suspected of being partially or completely plagiarized will be turned over to the Office of Student Conduct, which will determine the appropriate sanctions, up to and including expulsion from the University.
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