ENGL 1200H-E Freshman Honors Seminar
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This class will explore the various assumptions and protocols of academic writing. Academic writing is your passport to success, both within the academy and in much of the professional world. It is a form of writing with its own codes and rules, and it is imperative that we begin our semester acknowledging that no one is born a good academic writer, just as no one is born already knowing English, French, Chinese or Hebrew. Academic writing must be learned by the hard work of practice and requires the skills of dedication and patience. The other forms of writing at which you are already adept—personal essays, emailing, blogging, texting, note-taking, etc.—will be of help with academic writing, but always be aware that academic composition is its own unique form. Academic writing is defined by its methods, not by its chosen subjects. You can write academically about professional wrestling, and writing about literature is not automatically academic. Through an exploration of various forms of expression, students will learn key aspects of academic writing such as ways to strengthen ideas and lines of inquiry, support argument positions and write clear and persuasive arguments. The essay sequence, which builds on itself, is designed for students to demonstrate comprehensive knowledge of a particular skill. In the first essay, students will close read a chosen advertisement. The second essay will offer the opportunity for students to showcase their comparative analysis strategies by putting in relation two short stories. The third and final essay, a research paper, asks students to demonstrate an ability to engage with secondary sources and enter into the ongoing academic conversation about a poem. Each of the essays will stem from a genuine question about the images and texts that students develop through their reading of the material, a question that arises through intrigue, confusion or curiosity and is revised, honed and reframed through discussions, prewriting exercises and revisions.
O'Malley, Seamus. (2021, Spring), Syllabus, ENGL 1200H-E Freshman Honors Seminar, Stern College for Women, Yeshiva University.
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