Rhetoric and Comosition, Semester II

Course Details

Course Number: 1123  Section Number: 208

Spring 2012

Location: Dillard College of Business Administration

Classroom Number: 338

Days & Times:

ENGL 1123-208 MWF 11:00-11:50 AM Dillard 338



Course Attachments

Class Schedule  ENGL 1123 208 MWF Schedule Spring 2012-20120402-142733.doc

Textbooks

A Short Guide to Writing About Literature
12th edition Sylvan Barnett & William E. Cain
  ISBN: 978-0-205-11845-8

LB Brief
Jane E. Aaron 4th edition
  ISBN: 978-0-205-75155-6

MSU Faculty Member
Dr. Peter Fields   
view Profile »

Course Objectives

 

  • Write thesis-based essays that provide strong support and specific details
  • Engage in a writing process that includes invention, drafting, and revision
  • Demonstrate proficient use of Standard Written English
  • Find, evaluate, and synthesize credible sources in support of a research paper
  • Document sources responsibly and follow a designated style guide  

Additional information about course objectives can be found on the department webpage, http://libarts.mwsu.edu/english/.

Writing about Literature. For the first four weeks, students must write critically on one of two literary topics: a five-paragraph essay on poetry (“The South” by Langston Hughes) or a five-paragraph essay on fiction (“The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin). Writing must follow MLA standards (both in-body and in the Works Cited). This module is designed to introduce students to supporting, demonstrating, and reinforcing a thesis with evidence and proper citation—without as yet venturing onto the databases or into the book stacks. The goal is to sustain a personal insight (about the poem or story in question) in a way that is original, insightful, and creative. Students should avoid merely summarizing or restating the poem or story. 

Student Research Project. In ENGL 1123 with Dr. Fields, students will develop a 15 paragraph research essay using MLA citation and Works Cited. The paper will be written in over three stages, each one a five-paragraph essay in its own right. Students must express key ideas from their sources (scholarly sources from Moffett-supported databases or Moffett book stacks). Students may quote from these sources (with attribution, quotation marks, and parenthetical reference), but they must also express the significance—the key idea—of points-of-fact from their sources in their own words. Even in these cases, students must offer attribution and the parenthetical reference—but they would use phrasing which was insightful, original, and creative. Students should show ownership by providing their own take on the point of fact, perhaps by providing an illustration or personal example. Mere restatement will require revision for originality and ownership.

The research topic must relate to the student individually, whether in regard to the student’s personal experience (including family history), or the student’s prospective field of study, goals, or career. 

Sources must be scholarly (e.g., peer-reviewed and recent research in professional journals) and come from the Moffett-supported databases or Moffett book stacks. 

In-class Pre-WPE essay. In ENGL 1123 with Dr. Fields, students will write in class a five paragraph essay in class which is meant to prepare them for the WPE. It will utilize a “prompt” the student has not seen previously.


Course Expectations

There are six assignments: 1) Hughes or Chopin essay, 2) Position Essay (five paragraphs), 3) Opposition Essay (five paragraphs), and 4) Refined Position Essay (five paragraphs), 5) Combined Document (Position, Opposition, & Refined Position stages, corrected as required  and combined for one polished 15 paragraph project with MLA styled bibliography), and 6) In-class five paragraph Pre-WPE essay.

Writing about Literature (see sample Hughes essay)

Students will write one five-paragraph literary essay based on either Langston Hughes’ “The South” (a poem) or Kate Chopin’s “The Story of an Hour” in A Short Guide to Writing about Literature. The essay will be drafted in class over several sessions. Students should revise the essay prior to submission. Errors in standard grammar and punctuation will affect the grade.

  • The first paragraph, or introduction, begins with the clearest possible explanation (3-5 sentences) of the student’s argument (and, for that reason, the first paragraph is best composed last). The argument is the student’s thesis followed by sub-points (e.g., ideas raised in the body paragraphs).
  • In the middle of the first paragraph (following the argument), students should utilize a quote (of a sentence or two) from the assigned student essay in our book. Students should offer attribution (author and title of the essay in our book) followed by the significance of the quote in the student’s own words. The actual quote of from the student essay follows with quotation marks. A parenthetical page number comes after the final quotation mark but prior to the period.
  • Set-up: The first paragraph should end with one or two sentences that provide a context for the Block Quote that immediately follows (where we are in the action as of the Block Quote). The first paragraph ends on a colon (:).
  • Each essay features a Block Quote (BQ), a long passage from the poem or story cited word for word in the essay (e.g., some five or more lines). Instead of quotation marks, students set it off an extra 10 spaces on the left all the way down. (Poetry for a BQ should look the same way it does on the page in our text.)
  • The second paragraph mines the BQ for ideas. The second paragraph does NOT have any quotes, either from the Block Quote or from elsewhere in the poem or story.
  • The third paragraph, regarding character (the motivation of a person in the story), utilizes four Short Quotes (SQs) that were not part of the BQ.
  • The fourth paragraph, regarding irony (when the opposite of what we expect proves to be true), utilizes four more (never before used) SQs.
  • SQ’s should NOT lead a sentence. They should come towards the end of a sentence, especially if the SQ is more than a few words.
  • SQ’s should be integrated in the student’s language if only a word or two
  • SQ’s should follow the student’s own thought if of significant length.
  • The fifth paragraph begins with the position, offers a concession, and then reinforces the position (refined position) with THREE sub-points: i.e., three supporting reasons in support of the position (derived from key points in pars. 2-3). NO quoting in this paragraph.

The Student Research Project (see sample essay). These essays are outlined and drafted in class to insure originality. Errors in grammar and punctuation will affect the grade.

 Students choose their own individual topic (subject to instructor approval). Here are some of the topics students have chosen in recent semesters:

Accounting Education, Alcohol Abuse in College, Amputees & Prosthetic Limbs, Antidepressants, Attention Deficit Disorder, Baby Pacifiers, Bariatric Surgery, Bilingual Education, Birth Control, Breast Reconstruction after Mastectomy, Black Holes, Breast Feeding vs. Bottle, Charter Schools & Post-Katrina New Orleans, Coaching for Life, Commotio cordis, Concussions & Collegiate Athletics, Congenital Heart Disease, Domestic Violence, DNA Profiling, Dream Act, Eating Disorders & Depression, Emotional Eating, Educating Incarcerated Young People, Enforcing Title IX, Engineering Challenges in Rebuilding New Orleans, Epidural Anesthesia, Ethical Business Model & Profitability, Failure of NCLB, Families without Fathers, Female Body Image, Fertility, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Freshman 15, Genetic Causes of Obesity, Global Business Model, Global Food Shortage, Government Accreditation of Religious Colleges, Hague Adoption Convention, HIV Origin & Zoonosis, Homosexual Parents & Adoption, Hooking Up on Campus, Inclusive Classrooms, Internet Loneliness, Lorenzo’s Oil for ALD, Maternal Smoking & SIDS, Military Deployment & Effect on Children and Marriage, Music Therapy, Nanotechnology, New Oil drilling Techniques, Nursing and Stress, Obesity & Diabetes, Online Dating, Online Gambling, Organic Cattle Ranching, Palliative Care, Parkinson’s & L-Dopa, PATRIOT Act, Post-Traumatic Stress, Praise & Classroom Discipline, Pre-School Education in Developing Countries, Racism in Hiring of Coaches, Radio Frequency Identification for Inventory, Restructuring of Air Traffic Control, Schizophrenia and Heredity, School Bullies & Suicidal Ideation, Cosmetic Surgery, School Cafeterias & Obesity, Shaken Baby Syndrome, Spiritual Counseling in Nursing, Surrogate Mothers, Telemedicine in Developing Countries, United Nations Sanctions, Vaccines and Autism, Video Game Addiction, Video Games as a Virtual Classroom, and Wind Power.

 

  • Students must have at least FOUR sources (scholarly sources—peer-reviewed, recent research articles in professional journals—from a Moffett-supported database, Moffett electronic books, and/or scholarly titles from the Moffett book stacks).
  • The POSITION source is the basis of the five paragraph POSITION essay—the first stage of the research project.
  • The OPPOSITION source is the basis of the five paragraph OPPOSITION essay—the second stage of the research project.
  • The REFINED POSITION source (which reinforces the POSITION essay) is the basis of the five paragraph REFINED POSITION essay—the third stage of the research project.
  • The SUPPLEMENTAL source is not the basis of an essay. Instead, students will utilize a point of fact from the SUPPLEMENTAL source at the end of par. 3 or 4 of the REFINED POSITION essay.
  • The final due date of the semester is the REVISED RESEARCH PROJECT (COMBINED DOCUMENT). Based on the instructor’s evaluation of each 5-paragraph stage (Position, Opposition, and Refined Position), students will make corrections and then combine the three stages in one computer file. The result is a polished COMBINED DOCUMENT which is also the FINAL due date of the semester. Errors in grammar and punctuation will affect the grade.
  •  

Before students start drafting the three stages of the research project:

  • This course requires that students develop an expertise in utilizing the Moffett-supported data bases. Training is provided during the sessions with Faculty Partners—attendance, of course, is required.
  • Before students may start the in-class drafting of the position essay (the first stage of the research project), the instructor must approve and sign their ANNOTATED BIBIOGRAPHY.
  • The Annotated Bibliography features at least four required sources formatted like a standard MLA Works Cited, but with a difference. After each cited item, the student indicates the source’s argument, bias, and alternative views (one sentence for each).
  • In each of the three principal sources (position, opposition, and refined position), students must highlight and identify three passages: the argument passage (the main idea of the source), the bias passage (the source’s core convictions, overview, history, or theoretical assumptions), and the alternative views passage (where the source acknowledges a specific opposition or a range of views other than its own, and/or the problems and limitations of its own study or model).
  • In each of the three principal sources (Position, Opposition, Refined Position), students should clearly identify and highlight which passage will serve as argument, bias, or alt views. Each of the three passages must themselves be divided into three parts, each part clearly labeled “A,” “B,” and “C.” There can be no gaps between A, B, and C. The order must always be A, B, and C.
  • The “B” of bias and alt views passages should be equal to about two to four lines of the student’s typing. The “B” of argument should be substantial (6-10 lines).
  • For the supplemental source, students merely bracket one passage. They do NOT divide it up into A, B, and C.

 Writing each Stage of the Research Project (each stage a five-paragraph essay):

  • Each of the three essays (or stages) of the research project are FIVE paragraphs.
  • The introductory paragraph features the clearest possible expression of the source’s position along with key sub-points (some three to four sentences). Then students provide full attribution, title of the article, and name of the journal, along with a brief summary of the article. The introductory paragraph also provides a meaningful context for the Block Quote which follows. This context anticipates a key idea in the Block Quote and ends on a colon (:).
  • The Block Quote comes after the introductory paragraph and prior to the second paragraph. The Block Quote is the B of the argument passage in a given source.
  • The second paragraph which follows the Block Quote addresses the A, B, and C of the argument passage of a given source.
  • There is NO internal quoting in paragraph two.
  • Students may freely use technical terms in their own discussion of an A, B, or C if those terms are repeated throughout the sources on a given topic: e.g., online gaming, fetal alcohol syndrome, commotion cordis, inclusive classrooms, etc. These terms do NOT require quotation marks or parenthetical numbers. They are NOT considered plagiarism or too close to source. If students want to highlight a term, they may use italics.
  • AVOID repeating lists as you find them in a given A, B, or C, even if the terms in the lists are common throughout the sources.
  • The third paragraph explains the bias passage of the same source: i.e., making three points, the A, B, and C of the passage in that order, at least three sentences for each point followed by the source’s page number in parentheses.
  • The fourth paragraph explains the alt views passage of the same source (again, the A, B, and C).
  • For a given point (A, B, or C), students should express the implication and insight in their own words (at least three sentences for A, three sentence for B, and three sentences for C).
  • The B of bias and alt views requires a discussion of at least three sentences in the student’s own words. This B-discussion is then immediately followed by the entirety of B as a quote which in turn is immediately followed by a parenthetical page.
  • The final sentence prior to the quotation should end on a colon (:).
  • The parenthetical page that follows the quotation comes before the period (but after the closed quotation mark).

 NOTE: It is IMPERATIVE that students provide a page number (or paragraph number) in parentheses at the end of the last sentence of a given A, B, or C point which they express in their own words. For Bias and Alt Views, the parenthetical number comes immediately after a quote but before the period.

 

 

 


Grading Standards

 

In this class, the following numerical equivalents for final grades are used:

A = 100-90%; B = 89-80%; C = 79-70%; D = 69-60%; F = 59-0%.

IMPORTANT (the “D repeat” policy): For freshman or transfer students entering MSU in Fall 2011, a grade of “C” or higher in ENGL 1113 is a prerequisite for enrolling in ENGL 1123. A grade of “C” or higher in ENGL 1123 is required for graduation from MSU.

There are six grades: Literature Essay 20 percent; Positon Essay 10 percent; Opposition Essay 10 percent; Refined Position Essay 10 percent; Combined Document (Revised Project) 40 percent; Pre-WPE essay 10 percent.

 

 


Final Exam5/7/2012  TBA

Submission Format Policy

Proper Format and Submission of all Work

  • All writing must be typed (12 point Times New Roman), double-spaced, with a header for the student’s last name (in the default .5 setting in upper right corner), page numbers inserted (upper right, .5 setting), and MLA format for citing, including the Works Cited. However, while the top, right, and bottom margins should be set at one inch, the left margin should be an inch and a quarter to accommodate the folder. On the first page of an essay, the student name, instructor name, course, and date should be in the upper left, double-spaced.
  • Students must submit, and retain, all their typed hole-punched assignments in the clasps (i.e., “brads”) of a folder (which has both brads and pockets) in the order that they were assigned. The photocopy or printout of the relevant sources must be in the left pocket. Each source should be clearly bracketed or highlighted for argument, bias, and alt views. In each source, each of these three passages is clearly divided into three sections which are marked as A, B, or C. The most recent assignment that needs to be graded is always the last item (hole-punched and fixed in the brads).
  • Students must submit their work in person (from their hands into the instructor’s hands). Submission for a due-date is never by e-mail attachment or under the office door, or left on a desk, or by surrogate (classmate or relative). Late work also must be submitted in person.
  • Work submitted apart from the guidelines of this syllabus will not be evaluated and must be resubmitted and penalized for lateness.


Note: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in advance.

Late Paper Policy

An assignment is late if submitted after the class period it is due. If late by one period, the assignment will be penalized 10 points. If late by two class periods, the essay is penalized 20 points (the penalty is capped at 20 points). No late work may be submitted after the last official class period, Thursday, Dec. 1).  A class period is officially over when the instructor dismisses it. All late work must be submitted IN PERSON.

 

If students are too ill to submit their work personally, they should submit it when they return to class. They may avoid penalty for late submission by obtaining documentation from a relevant professional in a timely fashion (e.g., a doctor or the Dean of Students’ office). Absence for the sake of others requires similar documentation.


Plagiarism Policy Plagiarism is the use of someone else's thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")-whether you use that material in a quote, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

Student Honor Creed

As an MSU Student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else do so."

As students at MSU, we recognize that any great society must be composed of empowered, responsible citizens. We also recognize universities play an important role in helping mold these responsible citizens. We believe students themselves play an important part in developing responsible citizenship by maintaining a community where integrity and honorable character are the norm, not the exception. Thus, We, the Students of Midwestern State University, resolve to uphold the honor of the University by affirming our commitment to complete academic honesty. We resolve not only to be honest but also to hold our peers accountable for complete honesty in all university matters. We consider it dishonest to ask for, give, or receive help in examinations or quizzes, to use any unauthorized material in examinations, or to present, as one's own, work or ideas which are not entirely one's own. We recognize that any instructor has the right to expect that all student work is honest, original work. We accept and acknowledge that responsibility for lying, cheating, stealing, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty fundamentally rests within each individual student. We expect of ourselves academic integrity, personal professionalism, and ethical character. We appreciate steps taken by University officials to protect the honor of the University against any who would disgrace the MSU student body by violating the spirit of this creed. Written and adopted by the 2002-2003 MSU Student Senate.

Students with Disabilities The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Disability Support Services in Room 168 of the Clark Student Center, 397-4140.

Safe Zones Statement The professor considers this classroom to be a place where you will be treated with respect as a human being - regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, political beliefs, age, or ability. Additionally, diversity of thought is appreciated and encouraged, provided you can agree to disagree. It is the professor's expectation that ALL students consider the classroom a safe environment.

Contacting your Instructor All instructors in the Department have voicemail in their offices and MWSU e-mail addresses. Make sure you add your instructor's phone number and e-mail address to both email and cell phone lists of contacts.

Attendance Requirements

Roll is taken right away as soon as class begins. The instructor is not obliged to count people present who arrive late. A student with three unexcused absences receives a warning from the instructor. As of the fourth unexcused absence, the instructor reserves the right to notify the Dean of Students and to initiate removal of the student from the course (including the possibility of a WF).


Other Policies

MSU Legal Stipulation By enrolling in this class, the student expressly grants MSU a “limited right” in all intellectual property created by the student for the purpose of this course.  The “limited right” shall include but shall not be limited to the right to reproduce the student’s work product in order to verify originality and authenticity, and for educational purposes.

Note: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in

Plagiarism is the use of someone else’s thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")—whether you use that material in a quotation, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

 Language too close to the student’s own documented sources: In our course, restating language word for word (or close to word for word) from the student’s own documented sources without using quotation marks or setting it off as a Block Quote puts an essay at risk of penalty in regard to the grade, even if the student provides a parenthetical page at the end of a sentence and includes the source in the Works Cited. 

The three five paragraph stages of the research project are opportunities for the instructor to have teachable moments with students regarding language which is TOO CLOSE to their own documented source (e.g., any four words in a row verbatim from the documented source must be revised; use of the same key nouns, verbs, adjectives, and phrases must be revised).

Students must revise such lapses in the three stages of the research project—fully, dynamically, creatively, and insightfully—by the due date for the combined revised document. Students who persist even at this final stage in using language too close to their own documented sources risk serious penalty to the project’s grade and the grade for the course.

 

ACADEMIC DISHONESTY & Non-Documented Sources

  Students who use information and/or phrasing from sources that are not documented in the Works Cited bibliography are guilty of academic dishonesty and will receive a failing grade of 0 (no points) for the assignment even if the rest of the essay is original and the other sources are properly documented. The student in this case MUST withdraw from the course. If the student does not formally withdraw from the course, he or she will be removed by the instructor with a WF. Use of undocumented sources is an infraction of the university’s policy on academic dishonesty and must be reported to the Dean of Students.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Disability Support Services in Room 168 of the Clark Student Center, 397-4140.

 

The professor considers this classroom to be a place where you will be treated with respect as a human being – regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, political beliefs, age, or ability. Additionally, diversity of thought is appreciated and encouraged, provided you can agree to disagree. It is the professor’s expectation that ALL students consider the classroom a safe environment.

  • MSU is a tobacco-free campus (chew tobacco is prohibited in this lab). There is no facsimile smoking either: e.g., no use of an “electronic” cigarette.
  • In the lab there should be no eating or drinking.
  • Students should not spend time on computer sites the instructor has not authorized.
  • Students shouldn’t text or talk on their “cells” during class. In an emergency, students should take the call outside the classroom.
  • Students must NOT listen to headsets or any other form of electronics.
  • The instructor may insist on the removal of all visible electronics from the desktop.
  • There is NEVER a reason to disregard the request of the instructor to remove headsets or other electronics or otherwise abide by proper decorum.
  • Students who do not heed the instructor’s concerns may be required to meet with the Dean of Students.
  • Students who do not heed the concerns of the instructor are invited to leave and may be removed from the course with a WF.
  • Students may consult with each other during class (except during the in class essay exam) as long as they don’t hinder the progress of those around them.
  • Students may go to the restroom as the need arises except when the instructor is explaining a detailed point to the whole class.
  • Except for the in class essay exam to prepare students for the WPE, students must allow other class members to see their works-in-progress, including on the big screen. Most importantly, students should know that we write in class. Students need their own memory device applicable to the lab computer. Students MUST demonstrate progress in the lab on the computer.
  • Students must have the instructor’s permission to leave class early.
  • If students know they are going to be absent, they MUST e-mail the instructor or leave a message at 940-397-4246.
  • The above message, however, do NOT constitute an excused absence. But if reasonable or otherwise plausible, these messages may influence the instructor to assume the student is still in the class.
  • An excused absence is when students follow up on their e-mail or voice-mail message to the instructor by showing him documentation from a doctor or clinic or court. The instructor will also count any message from the Dean of Students on the student’s behalf. Students are well-advised to contact the Dean of Students with relevant information about an absence.
  • If the weather calls for snow or ice, the instructor hopes that commuting students will make SAFE decisions about getting on the road. Emergency road conditions are ALWAYS considered EXCUSED.

Writing Proficiency Requirement All students seeking a Bachelor's degree from Midwestern State University must satisfy a writing proficiency requirement once they've 1) passed English 1113 and English 1123 and 2) earned 60 hours. You may meet this requirement by passing either the Writing Proficiency Exam or English 2113. Please keep in mind that, once you've earned over 90 hours, you lose the opportunity to take the $25 exam and have no option but to enroll in the three-credit hour course. If you have any questions about the exam, visit the Writing Proficiency Office website at http://academics.mwsu.edu/wpr, or call 397-4131.