ENC 1101 Readings & Resources

Some favorite readings on composition:

  1. “The Ethics of Style” from Style:  Ten Lessons in Clarity and Grace by Joseph M. Williams (not in reader)
  2. “What Is Writing?” Lindemann from A Rhetoric for Writing Teachers by Erika Lindemann with Daniel Anderson
  3. “College vs. High School Writing” (not in reader)
  4. “Too Much Pressure” by Colleen Wenke (reader)
  5. “When Will You Stop Correcting Student Writing if You Don’t Stop Now?” by Ned B. Williams from More Ways to Handle the Paper Load (not in reader)
  6. excerpt from “Teaching Rewriting” from A Rhetoric for Writing Teachers by Erika Lindemann with Daniel Anderson (not in reader)
  7. “In Search of the Perfect Sentence” from _The Writer_ magazine by Jan Tarasovic (not in reader) and, for fun, Tarasovic’s blog   
  8. “Part Two:  Eight Steps to Successful Essay Writing” from Essay Writing:  Eight Steps to Successful Essay Writing by Ruth Ford (not in reader)
  9. “Part One:  Understanding the Need for Essays” from Essay Writing:  Eight Steps to Successful Essay Writing by Ruth Ford (not in reader)
  10. “Not Your High School English Class” & “Stopping to Smell the Roses” from This is Not Your High School English Class:  What You Really Need to Know to Succeed in First Semester English Composition I by Eugene Ortiz (not in reader)
  11. “Avoid Pitfalls” from This is Not Your High School English Class:  What You Really Need to Know to Succeed in First Semester English Composition I by Eugene Ortiz (not in reader)
  12. “The Roses and You” & “The Roses and Your Reader” from This is Not Your High School English Class:  What You Really Need to Know to Succeed in First Semester English Composition I by Eugene Ortiz (not in reader)
  13. “Writing about Yourself: The Memoir” from _On Writing Well_ by William Zinsser (not in reader)
  14. The informal essay explanation from _On Writing_ by Stephen King (not in reader)
  15. Grammar editing in the writing center (Ironically, there are mistakes in the first paragraph!)

Some models of form, for analysis:

  1. “Chicken or Fish” from Couplehood by Paul Reiser
  2. Comp Tales:  An Introduction to College Composition through Its Stories by Richard H. Haswell and Min-Zhan Lu
  3. “My Five-Paragraph-Theme Theme” by from What Is College-Level Writing? Volume 2:  Assignments, Readings, and Student Writing Samples by Patrick Sullivan, Howard Tinberg, and Sheridan Blau
  4. “Celebrating the Pity of Brotherly Love” by Andrew Krull (not in reader)
  5. “Fish Cheeks” by Amy Tan
  6. “Arm Wrestling with My Father” by Brad Manning
  7. “Shooting Dad” by Sarah Vowell
  8. “But What Do You Mean?” by Deborah Tannen (not in reader)
  9. “Disability” by Nancy Mairs
  10. “Bias Against the Elderly Creates a Negative View of Aging” from _The Elderly_ by Thomas Day (not in reader)
  11. “Men—It’s in Their Nature” by Christina Hoff Sommers (reader)
  12. The Abercrombie & Fitch incident from _Stepping Up: A Call to Courageous Manhood_ by Dr. Dennis Rainey (not in reader)
  13. “Supporting Family Values” by Linda Chavez (reader)
  14. “The Myth of Doomed Kids” by Bella DiPaulo (reader)
  15. “Ohio Man Says ‘Bypassing’ College a Mistake” by Katherine Dorsett (cnn.com; not in reader)
  16. “The College Scam” by John Stossel (townhall.com; not in reader)
  17. “Do Too Many Kids Go to College?” by NPR staff (not in reader)
  18. “Needs” by Thomas Sowell (reader)
  19. “The Best Kept Secret on Campus” by Rosie Anaya (reader)
  20. “Bassackwards:  Construction Spanish and Other Signs of the Times” by Jay Nordlinger (reader)
  21. “Nice Pencils—Now Fork Them Over!” from _Somebody’s Gotta Say It_ by Neal Boortz (not in reader)
  22. “Will Your Vote Be Counted in November?” from Ebony magazine by Michele Alexandre (not in reader)
  23. “Holder’s Chutzpah on Voter ID Issue” by Thomas Sowell (not in reader)
  24. “Batting Clean-Up and Striking Out” by Dave Barry (reader)
  25. The lizard essay by Ulyses Gonzalez, former student of mine at USF-Tampa (not in reader)
  26. The sandwich anecdote from _Teacher Man_ by Frank McCourt (not in reader)

I present you with a smattering of composition resources I have found and used throughout the years.  Refer to them as you feel the need.  As the semester progresses, I may refer you to the ones I feel would be most helpful for you.

If you know of other great resources, please let me know–the list may keep on growing.

Keep in mind that some of the resources will seem specific, or tailored to a particular assignment, textbook, or semester; just use the resources according to your own needs.  Also, when using these resources, please be ethical and give credit to authors where it is due.

Grading Criteria:

  1. Alling’s General Checklist for Essays (fairly comprehensive)
  2. Descriptions of A through F essays

Tips for Succeeding in the Course

  1. Guidelines for Keeping a Course Journal/Notebook
  2. Tips for Composing Reading Analyses (handout from Instructor Alling; or try this video)
  3. Handling Timed, In-Class Essays

Composition Philosophy

  1. How Important Are Composition Skills?
  2. Essay Writing (explanation from Purdue OWL)
  3. HighSchoolvs.College,AcademicWriting (PowerPoint)
  4. Transition from High School to University [College] Writing
  5. College vs. High School Writing

The Writing Process

  1. Discovery and Planning Handout
  2. Planning Sheet for Analyzing the Writing Situation
  3. MethodsofDevelopment (PowerPoint)
  4. Reverse Outlining (a technique for reading texts & organizing your own paragraphs; from Purdue OWL)



Composition Skills

  1. Basic Paragraph Skills
  2. Methods for Developing Paragraphs/Entire Essays
  3. Conciseness & Emphasis
  4. Conciseness

Grammar, Mechanics, and Punctuation

  1. Appreciating & Approaching Grammar at the College-Level
  2. Article on effective grammar instruction (intended for high school level, but useful for college too)
  3. Bloopers: The Need for Editing
  4. Common Grammar Mistakes (from Texas A & M University)
  5. Why Sentence Structure Matters (a video from EducationPortal.com)

Critical Reading

  1. Intro to Critical Reading w/ examples
  2. Reading Texts Critically
  3. Sample Reading Analysis


  1. How to Proofread Your Essay for Spelling and Grammar (a video from Education-Portal.com)
  2. Self-Evaluation for Group Project (from Mike Markel)

Peer Review

  1. What is Peer Review & Why Should I Care?
  2. Guidelines for Using Reviewer’s Comments

Research and Library Resources

  1. College of Central Florida LRC (library) page
  2. LRC handouts
  3. Popular,ScholarlyArticlesHandout

Synthesizing Sources, Documentation, and Avoiding Plagiarism

  1. How to Synthesize Sources, Document Sources, and Avoid Plagiarism
  2. MLA Study Questions

Annotated Bibliographies

  1. Genre of Annotated Bibliography
  2. Sample Annotated Bibliography (from Alling’s grad school days)
  3. Grading Sheet for Ann. Bib.

Research Papers

  1. Instructions & Help for Research Paper with Annotated Bibliography
  2. Writing Situation for Career-Related Research Paper
  3. Sample Works Cited Page (MLA)Sample Essay Planning (Very Detailed)
  4. Research Paper Writing Center Workshop(a handout from Professor Andrew Jenkins)

Final Exam

  1. Review Sheet for Final Exam(a worksheet to help you on the objective section)
  2. ENC1101FinalExamReview(a PowerPoint presentation with explanation of the essay portion, and practice items that cover grammar, mechanics, sentence style, etc.)
  3. SamplePrompts for the essay
  4. SampleTimedEssay1 (final exam essay written by former student; although not perfect, this essay earned a good score because it uses original examples and strong transitions between paragraphs; the introduction is strong as well: the reader knows the narrowed subject and thesis, and the writer uses good diction)
  5. TimedEssay2 (another final exam essay written by a former student; this essay also earned a good score; the strengths are the organization and originality. You will notice that there are some spelling errors and a shift in point of view (shift in the conclusion); however, the two essay readers/scorers were willing to overlook some of the mistakes due to other effective features.)

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