Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Required Texts

  • Raimes, Anne. Pocket Keys for Writers. 2nd ed. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 2006. ISBN: 0618445463.
  • Course Packet for 21G.227/228 - available in lecture notes.
  • A paper portfolio in which to keep all the work you hand in for a grade.
  • Handouts from class.

For students needing additional work in reviewing English grammar:

  • Azar, Betty Schrampfer. Understanding and Using English Grammar: Chartbook: A Reference Guide. 3rd ed. New York, NY: Pearson Publishing Group. ISBN: 0139587039.
  • An English/English dictionary of your choice.
  • A dictionary of synonyms or a thesaurus.

Criteria for HASS CI Subjects

Communication intensive subjects in the humanities, arts, and social sciences should require at least 20 pages of writing divided among 3-5 assignments. Of these 3-5 assignments, at least one should be revised and resubmitted. HASS CI subjects should further offer students substantial opportunity for oral expression, through presentations, student-led discussions, or class participation. In order to guarantee sufficient attention to student writing and substantial opportunity for oral expression, the maximum number of students per section in a HASS CI subject is 18.

Course Description

This workshop is designed to help you write clearly, accurately and effectively in both an academic and a professional environment. In class, we analyze various forms of writing and address problems common to advanced speakers of English. We will often read one another’s work. I will sometimes use your sentences as examples to work on, because I believe revising your own writing is an effective teaching tool. I will not identify you as the writer. If this is a problem for you - that is, you do NOT want your work used in class - please let me know privately or via email.


I expect you to attend every workshop. More than 3 absences will affect your grade. If you feel you cannot make this commitment, then you should probably reconsider taking the class.

If you must miss a workshop, please inform me ahead of time on email and be sure to contact another member of the class so that you come to the next class prepared.


Attendance in class, preparation and participation count for 35% of your grade. Those who do not prepare, contribute to discussions, complete assignments on time and attend class regularly can expect their final grade to suffer.


Your grade will be based on:

Attendance and participation 20%
Preparation (homework) 15%

Five shorter written assignments:

Extended definition for a general audience (2 pp.)

Resume and cover letter responding to a particular ad (2+ pp.)

Response paper (quote, paraphrase, summarize, comment) (2-3 pp.)

Proposal Memo with Bibliography /References (3 pp.)

Abstract and Introduction to final paper (3 pp.)


Final paper (and brief presentation):

Approximately 15 pp. plus Works Cited/References page. This can be a stand-alone research paper, or it can be a portion of your thesis. You may work on a paper in connection with another class IF I receive email from the instructor that this is acceptable to him/her.


No late papers or homework, please. If there is a dire emergency, speak to me personally so we can work something out. Please don’t just disappear or simply fail to turn something in. Always talk to me and ask for an extension.


Editing work: We will do in-class editing. Depending on the class size, I may put you in permanent editing groups. Then it will be your responsibility to get your paper to the members of your editing group in advance, so that they can read through it and have their comments ready before coming to class. We will decide on this together.


Do not copy work from the Web, do not submit papers you have already submitted for other classes*, do not give your papers to native speakers to edit. I will talk more about the seriousness of plagiarism as we move along, but for now please be advised that any writing you submit must be completely your own. There are severe sanctions for students who plagiarize—including loss of degree and/or termination from the Institute.

*you may work on a paper you are currently writing for another class, however—(a chapter of your thesis, for example)

Personal Requests

  • Avoid eating in class. It’s distracting for everyone. Try to eat before you get here.
  • Turn off your cell phones, please.
  • Use laptops only for related work, please. It’s distracting to have students using laptops while class is in session.
  • Assignments due in class are to be typed and printed out on paper according to the guidelines in the course packet.

Course Info

As Taught In
Spring 2007
Learning Resource Types
Lecture Notes
Presentation Assignments
Written Assignments