Writing 121 and Writing 104 Outcomes Based on Pass

WR 121 and ENGL 104 Outcomes, Common Syllabus Elements, and Means of Assessment Based on PASS Standards

WR 121 Outcomes:

  1. Quality of Thinking:  Develop, support, and convey clear, focused, and substantive ideas in ways appropriate to topic, context, audience, and purpose.
  2. Organization and Coherence:  Organize writing in clear, coherent sequences, making connections and transitions among ideas, paragraphs, and sentences.
  3. Sentence Structure and Word Choice:  Use and vary sentence structures and word choices to achieve clear and fluent writing.
  4. Editing:  Edit for correct spelling, grammar, punctuation, capitalization, paragraph structure, sentence construction, formatting, and, when appropriate, citations.
  5. Writing Process:  Use effective processes–including drafting, peer responses, and, when appropriate, tutorial assistance–to generate, compose, organize, revise, and present writing.
  6. Research Process:  Identify and frame topics, questions, and purposes for inquiry; plan and conduct research.
  7. Analysis of Information Sources:  Locate and interpret varied information sources; distinguish among facts, supported inferences, and opinions; evaluate information.
  8. Use of Researched Information:  Use, integrate, and cite researched information and evidence.
  9. 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.
  10. 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:

  1. Research:  A short argumentative or essayistic, multi-sourced research project or sequence of research activities.
  2. Summary/Response:  At least one summary/response paper based on at least a single source.
  3. Narrative:  At least one analytical narrative or description.
  4. Timed Writing:  At least one timed piece of writing, based on response to a source, and simulating a WPE exam.
  5. Reflection:  At least one reflective piece analyzing the writers strengths and weaknesses.

English 104 Outcomes

  1. Breadth and Depth of Literary Experience:  Read works from a number of periods and in a number of genres.
  2. 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.
  3. Interpretation and Use of Textual Evidence:  Use textual evidence to develop and support an interpretation of a literary work.
  4. Criticism:  identify one’s approach to literature and its intellectual sources and currents; be aware of alternative approaches and their intellectual sources and currents.
  5. 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.
  6. Understanding of Social/Cultural Representations:  Examine how works from the humanities characterize or fail to characterize individuals, groups, and cultures.
  7. 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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. Understanding of Contextual and Biographical Influences:  Require attention to context and biography in interpretation, emphasize intertextuality, study a sequence or works.
  6. 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.
  7. 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:

  1. Short written Analytical responses
  2. Collaborative Analytical Responses
  3. Analytical essays
  4. Written midterms and/or a final
  5. Peer teaching
  6. Creative Responses
  7. At least one Research Activity
  8. Encouragement or requirement of attendance at a literary performance ( a play or reading)

Developed at Fall Retreat 2001.

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