Tuesday, August 19, 2014

120 syllabus

English 120-3014                                              College Composition

Meeting Times: 9:30-10:50 a.m., T Th
Room: 51-578
Instructor:  Swan Ashby
Instructor email: swan.ashby@gcccd.edu
OR swan0816@aol.com
Instructor Phone Number: 619-997-6665 (text or call)
Office Hours:  By appointment;  likely 11-1:50 T Th

Course Description:
This is a Freshman composition class which requires students to write expository and argumentative essays, including a fully formatted research paper, utilizing a variety of rhetorical methods. Students will also read and evaluate expository essays and fiction to use to further the development of their individual writing styles.


Required Texts:

Kirzner, Laurie G. and Stephen R, Mandell. Patterns for College Writing: A Rhetorical Reader and Guide.

Hacker, Diana and Nancy Sommers.  A Writer's Reference.

Student Learning Outcomes:

Reading Outcomes

Students will:

1. Read critically and analytically, identifying central arguments (theses/claims) and lines of reasoning in a number of different kinds of texts, emphasizing non-fiction texts.

2. Recognize specific rhetorical strategies writers employ to advance their arguments (theses/claims), taking into account purpose and audience.

3. Locate and evaluate primary and secondary sources for depth, breadth, credibility, and relevance, using the library databases and Internet; books and printed scholarly articles; and non-print sources such as audio/visual, interviews, site visits, and field studies.

4. Identify, evaluate, and synthesize multiple points of view, noting how various perspectives inform, complicate, and/or build upon one another.

5. Recognize that all writing takes place in contexts, such as historical, cultural, biographical, religious, and political.


Writing Outcomes

Students will:

1. Employ a variety of organizational patterns to support or advance central ideas (theses/claims).

2. Make effective choices regarding point of view, tone, and voice in relation to audience and purpose.

3. Conduct research in response to a question, problem, or issue, defining and articulating the nature and extent of information needed.

4. Synthesize, integrate, and contextualize multiple outside sources (through quotations, paraphrasing, and summary) with their own voice, analysis, or position, while avoiding plagiarism.

5. Understand the value of accurately formatting papers and citing sources applying conventions such as MLA style.

Textbooks are available at the Grossmont College Bookstore and through online book sellers. You may purchase new or used books; you may rent or use electronic books if available. However, you MUST have all the required texts by Tuesday, September 3, or you may be dropped from the class.



Participation is an important part of this class. Please come to class. After three (3) absences, (excused or unexcused), you may be dropped from the course. Please come to class on time. Coming in late disrupts other students and you may miss hearing important information about the class.


If you must miss a class, it is YOUR job to get the homework assignments and have them ready on time. I recommend exchanging phone numbers or email addresses with two classmates so you can call them to find out what was covered.


Late work may be accepted with prior notice; however, assignments turned in after the deadline will automatically loose at least 10% of the points possible for that assignment.



Grades are given on a percentage system.  The maximum percentage you can earn is 100. Once you have earned 70% you have passed the class. Grades will be based on the following: Grades are based on:

Homework (Reading Responses): 10%

Journals: 10%    

Quizzes: 10%     

4 essays (4 pages each): 30%

Research Paper (6-10 pages): 15%

Class Participation: 10%

Mid Term: 5%   

Final Exam: 5%

Final Presentation: 5%



You are responsible for monitoring your grade online.  Within the first 2-3 weeks of class, you will receive a secret number written on the top of one of your assignments.  DO NOT LOSE THIS NUMBER.  This number will allow you to access your grade anonymously online.  Once you receive your number, you may access your grade by following these instructions: Go to www.gradesource.com.  Once you get on the web site, you do not have to log on.  Select English 120 either by my last name or course name.  Once you have selected the appropriate course, find “Overall Course” as one of the options on the menu.  Scroll to find your number.  Scroll right to find the percentage highlighted in yellow.  That is your cumulative grade up to that point in the semester.  Your grade will fluctuate throughout the semester.  It is your responsibility to continually monitor your grade, but if you have any questions after viewing your grade, please consult me.


Your final grade will be based on the following scale: (I do not utilize +/- grading for this course.)

A          100-90%

B          89-80 %

C          79-70 %

D          69-60 %

F          59% or less


Please NOTE: On June 11, 2011 the Board of Governors, the governing body for the California Community Colleges, adopted new regulations that limit the number of times a community college district could receive state funding for a student who has enrolled in the same credit course. The maximum number of times a student may enroll in the same credit course is three times.

·         A student, through a combination of substandard grades (D or F) and withdrawals on their student record, may only take a class three times.

·         If a student, through a combination of substandard grades (D or F) and withdrawals, wishes to take a class for the fourth time, they must submit a petition to the Admissions and Records Office. Petitions will only be approved based on extenuating circumstances.

·         Military Withdrawals do not count in terms of repetition restrictions, nor do withdrawals that occur due to fire, flood (Title 5 Sections 55024 and 58509)

·         This rule does not contain a grandfather clause. If a student has already reached the maximum allotted number of course repetitions, the district will not be able to claim apportionment for that course.


Group Work/Discussions

For some exercises and activities you will have to work and discuss questions with other students. Please give others a chance to speak and share their opinions. You don’t have to agree; you just have to listen. Personal attacks on other students, raised voices, profanity, or other acts of rudeness during group/class discussions are unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

Essay Policy:

When essays are returned to you, you will receive a letter grade with comments.  If you are unsatisfied with the grade that you will receive, you may return it to me revised ONE WEEK after the essays are returned to the class.  If you are absent on the day the essays are returned, you must still turn it in from the date the rest of the class received their essays. Revising means that you have revisited your work and found that improvements can be made above and beyond my suggestions.  Revising does not guarantee that you will improve your grade; however, your grade cannot go down from the original. 


Workshop Policy:

Workshopping essays (peer evaluation) is a critical part of English 120.  You and your peers offer a perspective that is unattainable elsewhere; therefore, you will receive class participation credit for being present on the day of the workshops.  In addition, you must have a draft to work on in the workshop.  It is so important that you have a draft that you will receive homework credit for having a draft according to the requirements of the day (as stated in the class schedule or by me, orally). 


Discussion Group Policy:

Within the first week of the course, you will be assigned a discussion group.  You and your group will be responsible for an assigned section of the text that we are discussing in class. Individually, you will each develop a statement about the section of text and a question for the class.  As a group, you will determine which statement and which question will be discussed with the whole class; however, everyone in the group must have one statement and one question to choose from.  On the day of discussion, you will receive class participation points for having a statement and a question about your section of text. 


Late Work:




Journals will contain critical thinking activities as well as responses related to the readings.  JOURNALS MUST BE AT LEAST ONE PAGE PER WEEK. The pages must be entirely filled in order to get full credit for the journal. 




Please respect me and your classmates by turning off your cell phones and/or pagers before coming to class. If you must take a call, do NOT talk in the classroom. Go outside. Do not spend class time text messaging other people or listening to I-Pods or other portable musical devices.


Supervised Tutoring Referral

1.             Students requiring reinforcement of concepts or additional help to achieve the stated learning objectives of the courses taken in English 98 or English 98R are referred to enroll in IDS 198, Supervised Tutoring, for assistance in the English Writing Center (70-119).  To add this course, students may obtain an Add Code for the English reading or writing sections of IDS 198 at the English Writing Center.

2.             Students can also enroll in other sections of IDS 198 to secure assistance for other content areas, i.e. biology, history, sociology, etc.  Add codes may be obtained in the Tutoring Center (70-229).

3.             In addition, students can receive tutoring in general computer applications by enrolling in the appropriate IDS 198 section.  Add codes may be obtained in the Tech Mall.

4.             All Supervised Tutoring courses are non-credit/non-fee. However, when a student registers for a supervised tutoring course, and has no other classes, the student will be charged the usual health fee.


Academic Integrity

Cheating and plagiarism (using as one’s own ideas, writings or materials of someone else without acknowledgement or permission) can result in any one of a variety of sanctions. Such penalties may range from an adjusted grade on the particular exam, paper, project, or assignment to a failing grade in the course.  The instructor may also summarily suspend the student for the class meeting when the infraction occurs, as well as the following class meeting.  For further clarification and information on these issues, please consult with your instructor or contact the office of the Assistant Dean of Student Affairs.


Special Needs

Students with disabilities who may need accommodations in this class are encouraged to notify the instructor and contact Disabled Student Services & Programs (DSP&S) early in the semester so that reasonable accommodations may be implemented as soon as possible. Students may contact DSP&S in person in room 110 or by phone at (619) 644-7112 (7119 is TTY for deaf).





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