Course Goals

The Goals of the Course

To foster the kind of ownership and confidence exhibited in most academic-related projects, English 110 offers activities and assignments that build on one another to reflect the rhetorical and emergent processes of writing. The program requires each instructor to create a “Course Overview” that makes this sequence evident. These short overviews (around 250 words) are designed to emphasize practices of academic writing which work towards meeting the goals stipulated for student writing in the General Education curriculum. Effective course overviews frame English 110 as writing via inquiry and exploration of a specific theme or topic. In addition, the overviews demonstrate how the goals that students achieve in earlier reading and writing assignments enable them to meet the requirements of later, more complex assignments.

Student Learning Practices and Outcomes

ENGL 110 is designed to facilitate the following Student Learning Practices and Outcomes (SLPOs):

Learning outcomes should be listed on the syllabus and make clear to students that these outcomes shape the activities and assignments of the course. Queens College asks that these learning outcomes be measurable and directly tie into how instructors assess and evaluate students in the class. By organizing 110 classes around these goals, the program can ensure consistency among the 110 classes for students, while also providing space for pedagogical creativity.

Rhetorical Knowledge

By the end of English 110, students will produce writing that responds appropriately to a variety of rhetorical situations. Such writing should:

  • Focus and communicate consistently on a specific purpose.
  • Analyze and respond to the demands of a variety of audiences and situations, demonstrating awareness of the variety of stakeholders involved in a particular issue and how such issue may be multifaceted.
  • Choose evidence and detail consistent with purpose and audience.
  • Recognize the utility of digital technologies for composition. The digital platforms could include anything from blogs, wikis, podcasts, videos, Blackboard discussion threads, Epsilen software, social networking sites, or anything along those lines.

Academic Literacy Practices

By the end of English 110, students will produce writing that summarizes, synthesizes, analyzes and critiques other people’s arguments and ideas fairly. Their writing should demonstrate:

  • An understanding of knowledges and languages as existing within a broader context, including the purpose(s) and audience(s) for which a text may have been constructed.
  • Active engagement with a variety of texts and genres of appropriate difficulty for first-year writing.
  • Basic research practices in identifying and analyzing electronic sources, including scholarly library databases, the web, and other official databases.
  • Rhetorical awareness in integrating and formatting source material into their writing. For instance, accurately employing stylistic guidelines to show how they draw from their researched materials.
  • Experience reading and composing in several genres to understand how genre conventions shape and are shaped by readers’ and writers’ practices and purposes. 

Composing Processes

By the end of English 110, students will produce writing that shows how writers may navigate the diverse processes of composing. Students’ writing should exhibit:

  • Multiple strategies of invention, drafting, and revision through the analysis of evidence. For instance, drafting ideas in multiple languages.
  • Development of flexible strategies for reading, drafting, reviewing, collaborating, revising, rewriting, translating, rereading, and editing.
  • Navigation and delivery of language(s) in ways that are consistent with the given purpose and audiences. For instance, considering what languages and types of academic content are most appropriate when delivering a plan for a community of teachers.
  • Active collaboration and feedback with peers, instructors, and their own writing at different stages of the writing processes.
  • Translation and use of a variety of technologies to address a range of audiences.

Languages and Conventions

By the end of English 110, students will produce writing that strategically employs appropriate language conventions in different writing situations. Their writing should:

  • Use structural conventions such as organization, formatting, paragraphing, and tone.
  • Demonstrate growing linguistic dexterity, by communicating awareness of the fluidity of languages and tones in academic writing, and the vocabulary often tied to composing processes, like the student learning outcomes stipulated here.
  • Exhibit the use of conventions tied to composing multimodally. For instance, demonstrating familiarity with principles of design, such as alignment, contrast, and repetition.
  • Expanded knowledge of proofreading and editing practices, such as reading a sentence aloud to grasp its meaning and pauses.
  • Show emergent control of such stylistic and mechanical features as syntax, grammar, punctuation, and spelling.

Confidence and Ownership

In fulfilling the above outcomes, students will take ownership of their work and recognize themselves as writers who:

  • Have a growing understanding of their own voice, style, and strengths.
  • Can draw on their varied and emergent linguistic and rhetorical knowledges.
  • Reflect on their emergent writing and language practices, and how such practices may influence and act on multiple aspects of their life.
  • Understand that authorship can be shared and produced in collaboration, but should work to ethically engage the works that informed this “new” production.

Statement of Learning Goals on the Syllabus

All 110 syllabi should include learning goals/outcomes that concisely reflect the above five categories. Here is an example of a list that you are welcome to use in your own syllabi:

Students will:

  1. Produce writing that responds appropriately to a variety of rhetorical situations with a particular focus on academic argumentation.
  2. Learn reading strategies to summarize, synthesize, analyze, and critique other people’s arguments and ideas fairly.
  3. Learn research practices that will help strengthen their writing and thinking.
  4. Produce writing that shows how writers may navigate the diverse processes of composing including revision and collaboration.
  5. Produce writing that strategically employs appropriate language conventions in different writing situations.
  6. Take ownership of their work and gain an understanding of their own voice, style, and strengths.
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