WR 121 and ENGL 104 Outcomes, Common Syllabus Elements, and Means of Assessment Based on PASS Standards
WR 121 Outcomes:
- Quality of Thinking: Develop, support, and convey clear, focused, and substantive ideas in ways appropriate to topic, context, audience, and purpose.
- Organization and Coherence: Organize writing in clear, coherent sequences, making connections and transitions among ideas, paragraphs, and sentences.
- Sentence Structure and Word Choice: Use and vary sentence structures and word choices to achieve clear and fluent writing.
- Editing: Edit for correct spelling, grammar, punctuation, capitalization, paragraph structure, sentence construction, formatting, and, when appropriate, citations.
- Writing Process: Use effective processes–including drafting, peer responses, and, when appropriate, tutorial assistance–to generate, compose, organize, revise, and present writing.
- Research Process: Identify and frame topics, questions, and purposes for inquiry; plan and conduct research.
- Analysis of Information Sources: Locate and interpret varied information sources; distinguish among facts, supported inferences, and opinions; evaluate information.
- Use of Researched Information: Use, integrate, and cite researched information and evidence.
- Single Source and Multi-source Analytic Prose: Integrate a single source or multiple sources that have been critically evaluated into an essay, while presenting the writer’s own carefully and thoughtfully considered point of view on a topic.
- Reflection: Evaluate and articulate one’s own strengths and weaknesses as a writer; plan ways to address weaknesses and take advantage of strengths.
WR 121 Common Syllabus Elements
Based on the outcomes above, the English/Writing faculty agreed on the following elements of a common syllabus:
- Research: A short argumentative or essayistic, multi-sourced research project or sequence of research activities.
- Summary/Response: At least one summary/response paper based on at least a single source.
- Narrative: At least one analytical narrative or description.
- Timed Writing: At least one timed piece of writing, based on response to a source, and simulating a WPE exam.
- Reflection: At least one reflective piece analyzing the writers strengths and weaknesses.
English 104 Outcomes
- Breadth and Depth of Literary Experience: Read works from a number of periods and in a number of genres.
- Analysis of Literary Elements and Devices: Recognize, examine, and understand the uses and effects of literary elements, language use and structure, and themes within and among literary works.
- Interpretation and Use of Textual Evidence: Use textual evidence to develop and support an interpretation of a literary work.
- Criticism: identify one’s approach to literature and its intellectual sources and currents; be aware of alternative approaches and their intellectual sources and currents.
- Understanding of Contextual and Biographical Influences: Explain how works from the humanities are influenced by historical, social, cultural, political, literary, or creative contexts and individual experiences.
- Understanding of Social/Cultural Representations: Examine how works from the humanities characterize or fail to characterize individuals, groups, and cultures.
- Understanding of Social/Cultural Commentary: Explain social/cultural perspectives, themes, and commentary and examine techniques used to promote or critique social change in works from the humanities.
ENGL 104 Means of Assessment
The English/Writing faculty identified these means of assessing students. Of course, not every section would employ all these methods:
- Breadth and Depth of Literary Experience: listserv commentaries, reading checks or pop quizzes, small group responses focused on study questions, tests, exams, in-class analytic writing, full class discussion, small group or individual presentations, read alouds in class, response forms or sheets, individual participation: speaking in class, one-on-one meetings with the teacher, tutoring, study guides, three sentence prompts, writing toward discussion, peer teaching, peer assessment, creative responses, imitation, reading response portfolios, reading response journals, questions, quotations.
- Analysis of Literary Elements and Devices: Use an element to analyze a text, line-by-line group scansion–linked to meaning, definition testing, linking to the body: choral recitation, memorization linked to a record of growing understanding, generating metaphors, found poems, first-line poems, guerilla poetry.
- Interpretation and Use of Textual Evidence: triple readings, commentary in a round with follow-up quiz, small group or individual presentations: creative, analytical, research; analytical/interpretative essay or paper, formal explication, peer teaching of a text or group of texts, use of literary elements to uncover meaning, paraphrase, conduct a trial, employ the interpretive paragraph model, thesis construction, establish a “climate of analysis,” a theory of literature final, a self-evaluation final, an interpretation final.
- Criticism: Employ professional critical essays through citation or discussion, apply critical approaches orally or in writing, assign small groups a critical approach and compare results, employ a dramatistic approach, require a self-reflexive response, move out from personal opinion using Scholes’ triad: reading/interpretation/criticism, construct theories of subjectivity.
- Understanding of Contextual and Biographical Influences: Require attention to context and biography in interpretation, emphasize intertextuality, study a sequence or works.
- Understanding of Social/Cultural Representations: Focus on values as they are represented in literature, examine the literature of difference, study the generation of a text.
- Understanding of Social/Cultural Commentary: Select literature where this focus dominates, uncover social commentary in texts.
English 104 Common Syllabus Elements
Based on the outcomes above, the English/Writing faculty agreed on the following elements of a common syllabus. A given course will include almost all of these requirements, and many of those listed above in addition:
- Short written Analytical responses
- Collaborative Analytical Responses
- Analytical essays
- Written midterms and/or a final
- Peer teaching
- Creative Responses
- At least one Research Activity
- Encouragement or requirement of attendance at a literary performance ( a play or reading)
Developed at Fall Retreat 2001.