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Reflective Introduction and Portfolio Prompt

ENG 101: English Composition I

Unit Five Assignment Prompt:

Reflective Introduction & Portfolio

Portfolio Submission Date: Friday, 06 December 2013 


To demonstrate your growth as a writer, your understanding of your composing processes, and your awareness of your rhetorical choices, you will compose a Portfolio of three revised and polished essays. This Portfolio will include Unit Two, along with two of the following: Unit One, Unit Three, and Unit Four.

To introduce your reader to your Portfolio—and to your semester-long development as a writer and scholar—you will compose a Reflective Introduction, which will discuss:

I. the three essays you selected, with attention to rhetorical choices you made about:
i. your initial composition of the essays
ii. your revisions of these essays (both from Rough Draft to Working Folder Draft and from WF Draft to Portfolio Draft)
iii. your reasons for including these essays

II. your development as a writer in this course, with thorough reflection upon:
i. increased skills as a writer and scholar
ii. areas to be targeted for improvement in future courses
iii. how development will serve you in future situations

Thus, in the Reflective Introduction, you will write about your own writing; and, in this process, you will show that you can “take a careful look at [your] own work to identify [your] patterns, strengths, and preferences for negotiating writing tasks, for learning new skills, and for putting those skills into practice” (Portfolio Keeping 6).

The Reflective Introduction builds upon previous writings. In Unit One, you explored an event in your life that increased your literacy education and enabled you to join a community. Here, you will explore your semester in ENG 101, an event that increased your rhetorical education and enabled you to join the community of academia. In Units Two and Three, you analyzed and evaluated the rhetorical choices of others; in this Unit, you will analyze and evaluate your own choices, writing processes, and their results. In Unit Four, you synthesized knowledge from multiple texts to assert your own claim; here, you will synthesize evidence from our entire course (i.e. essays, flashwrites, homework, readings, discussion, etc.) to support your conclusions about your evolution as a writer. Further, the Reflections completed after each Unit serves as a Unit-length example of this course-length Reflective Introduction.

Reflective Introduction Requirements

Page Length:  5-6 double-spaced pages (12-point font, 1” margins) with MLA header

The Reflective Introduction should:

  1. show critical engagement with and reflection upon your own writing processes
  2. demonstrate your ability to use college-level written communication
  3. have a creative, unique title and introduction that captures reader interest
  4. present a thesis that offers an overall evaluation your writing and development
  5. illustrate your writing journey through an overarching metaphor or image
  6. provide sufficient evidence from a variety of sources to support your claims
    these sources (i.e. readings, drafts, responses) must be cited accurately
  7. have a logical organization aided by effective transitions
  8. be virtually free of mechanical, grammatical, and usage errors

Portfolio Requirements:

The Portfolio should:

  1. open with a Reflective Introduction
  2. hold three revised and polished essays
  3. must hold Unit Two
  4. hold two of the following: Unit One, Unit Three, & Unit Four
  5. include WF Drafts and Professor Responses for each included essay
  6. place in an order that supports ideas explored in Reflective Intro

Revision Policy for Portfolio:
Because our course supports the theory that writing is a process occurring over time, and continual improvement is possible for all writers, the English Department strongly encourages all writers to revise the essays selected for their Portfolio.

Since our course also supports and encourages risk-taking, creativity, and invention throughout the composition process, please be advised that you will not receive a lower grade on your Portfolio Draft than you did on your WF Draft. If you choose not to revise, you will receive the same grade. If you revise in a way that some might see the essay as less successful after revisions, you will receive the same grade. Strong, thoughtful revisions, though, can only increase your grade—so, revision is encouraged!


Portfolio Due Date: Friday, 06 December 2013

*submit (1) hard copy in class AND (2) electronic copy via D2L

*if not submitted both in hard & electronic copy, late penalty will occur


Unit Four Prompt: Literature Review/Synthesis

ENG 101: English Composition I
Unit Four Assignment Prompt:
Literature Review/Synthesis

Annotated Bibliography Submission Date:    Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Rough Draft Submission Date:         Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Working Folder Submission Date:    Wednesday, November 20, 2013


Imagine that you have been asked by SIU’s College Life Director to prepare a presentation for Spring Welcome Week 2014 that addresses an issue of our environment. To prepare, the Director asks you to gather and synthesize information on some aspect of this issue into a literature review that will help you locate a focus for your presentation.

The Director asks that your review be an academic essay. Remember that the purpose of synthesizing literature is not only to inform or to assert opinion, but to 1) present specific points from all your sources about your chosen issue and 2) to offer your changing views on the issue as a result of engaging with your sources.

The literature review should draw from a minimum of five sources (three from the Mercury Reader and two from credible, approved sources of your own choosing). These texts must be cited and carefully attributed to their respective authors.

Essay Requirements:

  1. The essay should:
    a.         have a unique, interesting title
    b.         offer logical, clear transitions
    c.         be virtually free of grammatical and surface errors
    d.         give 1+ quote from each source & include an MLA-style Works Cited page
    e.         be 5-6 double-spaced pages (not incl. Works Cited page), 12 pt. font
  1. The introduction should:
    a.         have an opening that captures your reader’s attention
    b.         introduce your topic, articles, and articles’ relevance to your topic
    c.         give your thesis (comments upon current knowledge regarding your issue and your understanding of & reaction to this current knowledge)
  1. The body should:
    a.         briefly summarize each article (2-4 sentences per source)
    b.         analyze all articles, comparing and contrasting their points & strategies
    c.         synthesize all articles, showing your progress toward new understanding
    d.         reflect upon your changing knowledge in response to the texts
  1. The conclusion should:
    a.         restate your thesis and main points
    b.         pull together your new insights and make article relevant to readers
    c.         leave your readers thinking about your topic



Working Folder Submission Date: 10/4/2013


For this assignment your task is to compose a report on the advertisement you have chosen based on its use of visual and verbal rhetoric used to persuade or connect with the audience. You should identify the thesis of the ad and explain how the ad supports that thesis as well as explain how well the ad persuades its audience to accept the thesis. Your writing must support the analysis and evaluation with evidence and do so in a clear and logical manner.

Your essay should be broken into sections labeled with the following headings:
1. Introduction
2. Description
3. Analysis
4. Evaluation
5. Summary

Your introduction should provide a thesis statement about the ad’s approach and effectiveness. The introduction should be concise, but act similar to an abstract so that if your reader were to review only that portion of the essay they could wholly understand the ad’s approach as well as your evaluation.

Your description should be thorough enough so that your reader can visualize your ad it without actually seeing it. In doing this consider the most minute of details down to color, shape, font, light, figures, people, and textures of the ad.

Your analysis must provide a clear and detailed discussion of rhetorical mechanisms at work in the ad. In this section you are offering claims that explain the ad’s thesis along with evidence to your assertions.

Your evaluation will be an argument of whether or not rhetorical devices and approaches are working effectively to convey the thesis you identified in the ad.

Your Summary should recap on the prior arguments without directly restating them. Take this brief section as time to contemplate how you formed this understanding of your ad and if the elements of your ad worked effectively overall.

Because we have transitioned into closed-form writing this essay should be free of grammatical, mechanical, and usage errors. The report should comprise sentences and paragraphs that logically develop your argument. The transitions between sentences, paragraphs, and sections should be clear.

Your working folder submission should be typed in 12pt Times New Roman, double-spaced, and posses 1” margins along with an MLA style header that states your name and the page number.

Please remember to staple your essays before including them in your working folder and do not forget to provide the actual ad that you have focused on, as its inclusion is mandatory. D2L submission is also mandatory for the working folder draft of this essay.