At the end of each term, we ask students what they have gained from English Composition. Their responses tell us a lot about how they are achieving the learning objectives for the course. We are proud to share some of what they say about their learning in the course and have organized their comments by learning objective:

Demonstrate the ability to approach writing as a recursive process that requires substantial revision of drafts for content, organization, and clarity (global revision), as well as editing and proofreading (local revision).

We wrote more than one draft for each paper we wrote, and I think this really let me figure out where my weaknesses were in my writing and try to address them to the best of my ability. Editing and peer editing were also really helpful to my writing because they allowed me to see my work from another student’s perspective. Their comments were helpful in the editing process as I made revisions.

Be able to integrate their ideas with those of others using summary, paraphrase, quotation, analysis, and synthesis of relevant sources.

I learned how to appropriately integrate authors’ ideas into my own writing by using quotes, paraphrases, and analysis of the sources. At the beginning of the course, I would summarize most of the authors’ ideas, but as the semester continued I became better at really analyzing what the author was writing about.

Being able to integrate my ideas with those of others using summary, paraphrase, quotation, analysis, and synthesis of relevant sources was a huge challenge for me. But I think by the end of the semester that I mastered the process. Before college, I was used to summarizing. Then, when I came to my college writing class, I was pushed to a higher level of thinking. Instead of having a paper solely based on summary, I am now able to easily make connections between texts and use them as evidence to support my own ideas.

One of the things I’ve done in this class more so than any other is think in deep complexity.

Before I came here, I didn’t focus enough on integrating my ideas with those of others through summary, paraphrase, quotes, analysis, and synthesis of sources. I can balance my ideas with the evidence of others way more than I ever could before, and I think I do it well. I know where to put my ideas in order to make them prominent and meaningful.

Employ techniques of active reading, critical reading, and informal reading response for inquiry, learning, and thinking.

I have learned how to take texts and break them down into sections I can understand. This has been really important for note-taking and re-reading. Now, I am able to read my notes and not overhighlight.

I have honed my abilities of active reading and reading response. For someone who never read hard articles before, I initially found... the writings challenging. After class discussions and reading questions, it became less of a challenge for me.

Be able to critique their own and others’ work by emphasizing global revision early in the writing process and local revision later in the process.

I have learned how to revise my papers with the help of peers. I enjoyed the group atmosphere and I was open with my comments. I know now how important the editing process is. I can also effectively take advice from others and apply it to my revisions.

I’ve learned to allow myself to give harsh critique, for it only forces the writer to be even better.

Peer review gave us the opportunity to critique others’ work and also be able to see what we could do differently in our own writing.

Being able to critique others - doing the peer review has helped me learn how to edit/help other students, which in turn helped me with my own writing.

Be able to find, evaluate, and use material located through the library’s online catalog, through subscription databases, and through internet search.

I learned how to search for full text journals. I also learned how to figure out if something is a scholarly publication or not. I learned that Google Scholar can be helpful but isn’t always completely scholarly and should be checked out.

We took a tour through the library’s resources to help us better understand them. I learned how to use the interlibrary loan system and it has come in handy. I can easily navigate the website now and am confident that I would be able to find the resources I need.

Document their work using appropriate conventions (MLA).

Before this class, I had absolutely no idea how to properly cite sources without using Easy Bib. Now I am happy to be able to do it on my own.

All throughout high school I can’t recall a time I needed to document in-text and citations in MLA format. I feel that after writing all these papers, and having my hands on a [documentation reference] book, I have a stronger understanding of how to do this for future papers.

I was able to document a writer’s work using appropriate MLA format. I learned the basic MLA format in high school, for example, how to cite one author of a book. This course challenged me to cite multiple authors from different kinds of sources, such as web journal articles.

Control sentence-level error (grammar, punctuation, spelling).

I honestly didn’t realize how many commas I would use in my papers until this course. It also helped me with semi-colons.

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