Course Syllabus—Fall 2003


Ms. Nicole Detter

W131-31 MW 4:30-5:45 pm in SB G11

W131-33 MW 6:00-7:15 pm in SB G11

W131-75D Online

Office: CM 143

Telephone: 418-9362 (home) or 425-7570 x246 (Snider)

Office Hours: MW 4:00-4:30pm and by appointment


                   Required Materials

Course Goals

The department has set the following goals for W131. Upon completion of W131 students should:

  1. Demonstrate critical thinking through the interrelated activities of reading and writing. To achieve this goal, students will:


  1. Read critically and write clearly and persuasively for various rhetorical contexts. To achieve this goal, students will:
  1. Apply methods of inquiry appropriate to various rhetorical contexts. To achieve this goal, students will:

Course Requirements

Course Evaluation

Projects #1, #2, #3

(Including all drafts, all reflective cover

memos, and all peer reviews.)

A quick note on plagiarism and "recycling papers". You many not "borrow" someone else’s words without giving credit to that source—this is plagiarism. You may fail this class and/or be expelled from the university for purposeful acts of this kind. Other dishonest acts, which could carry the same consequences, are "recycling papers" from past English courses, "borrowing" papers from the Internet or friends and other actions not mentioned here. Dishonest activities of any kind will not be tolerated.

          Writing Center Information

Improve your writing for any class through free individual conferences with experienced writing consultants in The IPFW Writing Center—an excellent resources for all writers. Bring assignments, questions, ideas, and drafts. The staff will help you organize your ideas; work on style; and improve your documentation and editing skills.

Drop-ins are welcome, but to ensure help when you need it, sign for appointments on the bulletin board outside Kettler. Come early and often to the Writing Center! Hours: Sunday 1-5, Monday 10-5, Tuesday-Thursday 10-7, Friday 10-2. When you can’t get to campus, try Writing Online at: <>.

                   Assignment Sequence

Project #1 – Interview and Researched Paper into Writing

Many students in W131 think that once they finish this course they really will not have to write much again. In order to show you how important writing will become in your future classes and careers, we will do on and off campus research to find out how much writing you will be doing in the future. A minimum of one interview, although two are suggested, will provide the main body of information. As well, a visit to your department major to get information on courses and graduation requirements will be required. Suggestions to help develop paper include interviews or correspondence (via e-mail or telephone) with 300/400 level course instructors in your major, employers of people in your major and an individual who is employed in your desired future job.

Project #2 – Literacy Narrative

For this project, you will remember a significant event in your past that has had a profound impact on your view of literacy (may include only reading or only writing or both reading and writing). Detail and completeness of story are the important aspects of this assignment. The length of essay should be 3-4 pages.

With this project, you will have another requirement. You will write a letter to one of the people who had an impact on your success in school or a profile of this person. This letter or profile could be to or about a teacher, friend, parent, peer or other individual who helped you get to college. This could also be someone you did not directly help you, but rather influenced you by example or by his or her own struggles.

Project #3 — Annotated Bibliography

This paper will be based on research. You will go to the library and research the topic for your argumentative essay. After completing this research, you will choose the best ten sources and write a summary of the sources.

 Project #4 — Argumentative Essay

This paper will be based on research. You will pick a topic that is controversial either in your field of study or in the general news. Once you pick your topic, you will then begin to do some preliminary research. After some basic research, you will need to chose a side of the argument and write a paper. While you will acknowledge the other perspective, or side, to this issue, you will be trying to prove that your perspective is the "correct" perspective. This essay will be a bit longer than the other three, about 6-8 pages long.


Course Schedule—Fall 2003

(Subject to change at the whim of the instructor!)






Reading Assignment

(complete by next class meeting)

Writing Assignment

Monday, 8/25

Intro. to Course, Information sheets, course philosophy Discussion of portfolios, how class will work

Burch 1-16


Wednesday, 8/26

 Discuss Project One, go over portfolio course philosophy,

in class Burch 18-24, 218-232 and home Burch 30-32

Bring list of interview questions to next class!

Monday, 9/1

NO CLASS Labor Day Holiday

Lives on Boundary Preface xi-9

Begin contacting people for your interview!

Wednesday, 9/3

Writing Center Orientation

Lives on Boundary pages 11-37


Monday, 9/8

Helmke Library Orientation

Get ready for Interview! Discuss Rose book

Lives on Boundary pages 39-48


Wednesday, 9/10

No Class! Instead, use this time to interview and prepare your interview transcript!

Burch 218-232, Burch 312-320

Interview transcript due next class!

Monday, 9/15

Discuss interviews, organization of Project One, Rose discussion, and how to workshop

Lives on Boundary pages 48-65

Draft of Project One due next class! Bring 3-4 copies for Workshop!

Wednesday, 9/17

Draft Workshop! Attendance MANDATORY!

Read Lives pages 67-83



Monday, 9/22

Group Conferencing! Attendance MANDATORY!

Read Lives pages 67-83


Wednesday, 9/24

Revision vs. editing, how to revise, what to do now...


Revise Project One for "final" draft

Monday, 9/29

Introduction to Project Two, discuss Rose


Revise Project One for "final" draft--Project One due WEDNESDAY!

Wednesday, 10/1

Questions on Project Two, discussion of Rose


Project One Due! Draft of Project Two due Monday!

Monday, 10/6

Draft Workshop! Attendance MANDATORY!

Read Lives pages 85-111


Wednesday, 10/8

Individual Conferencing! Attendance MANDATORY!

Read Lives pages 85-111


Monday, 10/13




Wednesday, 10/15

Individual Conferencing! Attendance MANDATORY!

Read Lives pages 85-111


Monday, 10/20

Discussion of Project #3 and Lives, meet in Helmke Library 4th floor classroom

Continue conducting research

Project Two due Wednesday by 3pm in English Office box or via e-mail!

Wednesday, 10/22

Research Day - No Class


Project Two due Wednesday by 3pm in English Office box or via e-mail!

Monday, 10/27

Discuss questions on Project #3, how to do citations, how to summarize.

Read Lives pages 111- 132

Journal on pages 85-111 (topics given in class today)

Wednesday, 10/29

Discussion of Lives, in class writing


Draft of Project #3 due Monday for draft workshop!

Monday, 11/3


Read Lives pages 133-155 for next class meeting

Keep revising project for "final" draft!

Wednesday, 11/5


Read Lives pages 133-155 for next class meeting

Keep revising project for "final" draft

Monday, 11/10


Read Lives pages 155-165 and journal

Journal over Lives

Wednesday, 11/12

Discuss problems with Project #3, meet in Helmke Library 4th floor classroom-how to use visuals in your portfolios

Read Lives pages 167-185 and journal.

Journal over Lives

Monday, 11/17

Introduction of Project #4, meet in Helmke Library 4th floor

Read Lives pages 185-223

Final draft of Project #3 due Wednesday!

Wednesday, 11/19

Discussion of Lives, in class writing, in class writing, writing a researched paper, meet in Helmke Library 4th floor


"Final" draft of Project #3 due today!

Portfolio due Monday!

Monday, 11/24

Writing a researched paper, address problems & concerns


Portfolio due today! Paper Proposal & Paper Organization due next class

Wednesday, 11/26



Draft of Project #4 due next class!

Monday, 12/1



Revise Project #4!

Wednesday, 12/3


Read Lives pages 239-242

Revise Project #4!

Monday, 12/8




Wednesday, 12/10

Course evaluations, final exam information


"Final" draft of Project #4 due


Final Examination


Have a WONDERFUL holiday break!