Monday, September 21, 2009


Yakima Valley Community College—English Composition 101

Glenn-Anthon 121

Dan Peters, Instructor 574.6800.3194

Office Hours: Fall 2009

Course Description:

In the first of two college-level courses, English 101, students will learn to write clear, unified, coherent, and well-developed essays of increasing complexity. These essays may be about literary and nonliterary texts, or they may rely upon such texts as points of departure for the discussion at hand. Through reading, writing, and discussion, students will learn to critically examine their own assumptions and opinions and to consider the facts and reasoning of others. When documenting sources in their essays, students will use the basic citation methods of the Modern Language Association. Students successfully completing English 101 should be adequately prepared to succeed in the second college-level composition course, English 102.

Required Texts/Materials

  • A Writer's Reference, Hacker 6e
  • The Grapes of Wrath, Steinbeck
  • The Worst Hard Time, Egan
  • Three Ring Binder
  • Spiral bound notebook
  • A good college-level dictionary

Suggested: highlighter pens, mini-stapler, blue & black ink pens, thumb drive

Labs and Internet:

We will meet Thursdays in the lab. Room number C216.

There is also a blog associated with this class:

This site is unofficial and updated when I can get to it. I'll try to post lesson plans, useful links and reading schedules, but you should not rely on this site for anything beyond supplementing your classroom experience. That being said, it will be a big part of this quarter in particular.

Required Work

  • Three complete assignment sequences. Sequences will center on three related topics—

    Essay 1: Why Talk About the Dust Bowl Now?

    Essay 2: A Creative Response

    Essay 2: Why Talk About the Dust Bowl Here?

  • These sequences will include various prewriting activities, a rough draft and a second draft of all three essays.
  • Reading and commenting on students' papers. Your comments on papers should help others to revise and improve their work.
  • Readings as assigned.
  • Participation in class discussions and activities.
  • Preparation for class activities.
  • Quizzes on readings
  • A final revised essay for an improved score

Attendance Policy

If you miss 5 classes for any reason, you will lose one letter grade.

If you miss 10 classes you will lose two letter grades

If you miss 12 classes, you will be withdrawn from the course.

Coming 10 minutes late is absent. Leaving 10 minutes early is absent.

Please, come on time. Turn off the electronics. Lean in.

Requirements for essays and homework

All essays and homework are due on the date assigned.

Late work will not be accepted. Don't push me on this. It works for everybody. You will be given opportunities to make up these lost points through bonus point activities.

  1. Essays are required to be between 3 complete pages and 5 pages long, double-spaced, in a normal sized (12 point) font or type comparable to Times New Roman. Essays not meeting the minimum length requirement, whether through failure to complete 3 pages, use of a larger than normal font, or crayon pictures of a house or a kitty, or large margins, will have a reduced grade. Failing to complete page 3 by a line or two won't affect your grade, but stopping your essay on the middle of page 3 certainly will. Works Cited pages, graphics, charts, etc. do not count toward the minimum page requirement.
  2. All essays must be typed or printed on a computer printer.
  3. Essays must be typed in MLA format: with your name and page number in the top right-hand corner. Double-spaced. Correct heading
  4. Keep a HARD COPY of your essay, so that you will have a back-up in case of loss, fire, flood, locust, jelly donuts, terrorists, disk crash, etc. Anyone working on computer should have a back-up copy of his/her essay on disk.
  5. Plagiarized work will be scored as a 0 and will not be eligible for revision/rescoring.


Your grade will be broken into two parts:

  1. The first will be for all the work you do prior to a second draft.
    1. This work will account for 40% of your final grade.
    2. These assignments will either be assigned a point value (ex: 7/10) or be graded on a +, \, - basis.
  2. The second part of your grade is your second drafts.
    1. This work will account for the 60% of your final grade.
    2. These are essays that I will read, give comments on and score from 0-100.
    3. See attached rubric for guidance on the scoring.


A= 93%

A-= 90

B+= 87

B= 83

C+= 77

C= 73

C-= 70

D= 60

Course Adaptation: If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, if you have emergency medical information to share, or if you need special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please talk with me as soon as possible.

Take everyday actions to stay healthy.

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it. Sneeze into elbows, not hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hands cleaners are also effective.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread that way.
  • Stay home if you get sick. CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them

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