English Composition I (ENGL 1301)

Instructor: Brent Baggaley

A course devoted to improving the student's writing and critical reading. Writing essays for a variety of purposes from personal to academic, including an introduction to argumentation, critical analysis, and the use of sources.

HCCS Syllabus: Fall 2010

English 1301: Composition I


Class Information                                                   Contact Information

English 1301 – Section 65150                              Instructor: Brent Baggaley

Fall 2010 (August 30-Dec. 19)                              Phone: (713) 783-8013

Tuesday/Thursday 9:30-10:30 A.M.                      Email: [email protected]

Spring Branch: Room 312                                     Office Hours: Thurs. 12:30-1:30 P.M.




English 1301 is a course devoted to improving the student’s writing and critical reading. The course involves writing essays for a variety of purposes from personal to academic, including the introduction to argumentation, critical analysis, and the use of sources. English 1301 is a core curriculum course.

English 1301 is designed to help students write multi-paragraph expository, analytical, and argumentative essays that have the following qualities:

·     clarity in purpose and expression,

·     appropriate and sensible organization,

·     sound content, including applications of concepts from and references to assigned readings,

·     completeness in development,

·     unity and coherence,

·     appropriate strategies of development,

·     sensitivity to audience,

·     effective choice of words and sentence patterns,

·     grammatical and mechanical correctness, and

·     appropriate MLA citations format.  

. In order to take this course, you must register and pay for this course at Houston Community College, and bring in proof of registration by Thursday, August 27.


Required Textbooks:

These textbooks must be bought at the Houston Community College bookstore.


The McGraw-Hill Handbook, 2nd ed. Eds. Elaine P. Maimon, Kathleen Blake Yancey.

            Boston: McGraw-Hill, 2009.


The Writer’s Presence, 6th ed. Ed. Robert Atwan. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin, 2006.


Other Materials:

Paper and pens

Pocketed folders for portfolios and handouts

College-level dictionary or thesaurus

Floppy disks or jump drive






Major Assignments: The final grades will be calculated as follows:

% of Final Grade                  Due Date

  • Quizzes and Journals         15%                            n.a.
  • Personal Narrative               10%                           
  • Critical Comparison             10%                           
  • Mid-Term Exam                    10%                           
  • Definition Report                 15%                            To Be Assigned
  • Persuasive Essay                15%                            To Be Assigned
  • Gender Case Study             15%                           
  • Final Exam                            10%                           




Grading Scale: Essays and exams will be scored on a rubric of 1-10, “10” being the highest score, and “1” the lowest. For the purposes of grade calculation, an average score of 9-10 will earn an A, 7-8 a B, 5-6 a C, 3-4 a D, and anything below, an F. Students will be provided with the rubric of criteria ahead of time.




By the time the students have completed English 1301, they will:

·     understand writing as a connected and interactive process which includes planning, shaping drafting, revising, editing, and proofreading;

·     apply writing process to out-of-class writing;

·     apply writing process as appropriate to in-class; impromptu writing situations, thus showing an ability to communicate effectively in a variety of writing situations (such as essay exams and standardized writing tests like the TASP);

·     apply suggestions from evaluated compositions to other writing projects;

·     understand and apply basic principles of critical thinking in analyzing reading selections, in developing expository essays, and writing argumentative essays;

·     apply concepts from and use references to assigned readings in developing essays;

·     analyze elements of purpose, audience, tone style, and writing strategy in essays by professionals writers

·     complete short writing assignments, journal entries, readings quizzes, and other activities to strengthen basic thinking an writing skills

·     understand and appropriately apply various methods of development in writing assignments;

·     avoid faulty reasoning in all writing assignments;

·     fulfill the writing requirements of the course, writing at least 6,000 words during the semester.




·     READING: Reading material at the college level means having the ability to analyze and interpret a variety of materials -- books, articles, and documents.

·     WRITING: Writing at the college level means having the ability to produce clear, correct, and coherent prose adapted to purpose, occasion, and audience. In addition to knowing correct grammar, spelling, and punctuation, students should also become familiar with the writing process, including how to discover a topic, how to develop and organize it, and how to phrase it effectively for their audience. These abilities are acquired through practice and reflection.

·     SPEAKING: Effective speaking is the ability to communicate orally in clear, coherent, and persuasive language appropriate to purpose, occasion, and audience.

·     LISTENING: Listening at the college level means the ability to analyze and interpret various forms of spoken communication.

·     CRITICAL THINKING: Critical thinking embraces methods of applying both qualitative and quantitative skills analytically and creatively to subject matter in order to evaluate arguments and to construct alternative strategies. Problem solving is one of the applications of critical thinking used to address an identified task.

·     COMPUTER LITERACY: Computer literacy at the college level means having the ability to use computer-based technology in communicating, solving problems, and acquiring information. Core-educated students should have an understanding of the limits, problems, and possibilities associated with the use of technology and should have the tools necessary to evaluate and learn new technologies as they become available.




Attendance Policy: Regular Attendance is required at Houston Community College courses. HCCS class policy states that a student who is absent for more than 12.5% (6 hours) of class may be administratively dropped. Students who intend to withdraw from a course must do so by the official date (November 12) or they may receive an F instead of a W. Attendance will be taken every class period and this policy will be enforced. Students who are more than 10 minutes late for class will not be allowed into the classroom, and will be marked as absent.

If you should miss class for any reason, it is your responsibility to make up the work you missed and to contact me by phone or email for any special instructions on work you missed.




Policy on Academic Dishonesty:

All work you submit must be your own. If you consult any sources, whether written or on the Internet, you must clearly identify and document them, using the official MLA format, both in-text and on a Works Cited page.

Scholastic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to:

  • Plagiarism: the appropriation of another person’s work, and the unacknowledged (without MLA or APA documentation) incorporation of that work into one’s own work for credit.
  • Collusion: the unauthorized collaboration with another person, whether from the class or from the internet, in preparing written work for credit.

A student guilty of a first offense will receive a grade of 0 on the assignment involved. For a second offense, the student will receive an F for the course.



Any student with a documented disability (e.g. physical, learning,
psychiatric, vision, hearing, etc.) who needs to arrange reasonable
accommodations must contact the Disability Services Office at the
respective college at the beginning of each semester. Faculty is authorized
to provide only the accommodations requested by the Disability Support
Services Office.

Northwest ADA Counselor     Mahnaz Kolaini - 713.718.5422




Other Course Policies:

  • Please turn off cell phones and beepers prior to entering the classroom.
  • Please be prepared to take notes during class.
  • Late papers will not be accepted. There will be no extensions of due dates.
  • Please do not chat with class colleagues during discussion.
  • Please do not pack up books and belongings prior to being dismissed – I will announce when class has been completed and it is time for you to leave.

If you should miss class for any reason, it is your responsibility to make up the work you missed and to contact me by phone or email for any special instructions on work you missed.


This Syllabus, and all other calendars, assignment sheets and handouts can be found on the Learning Web page. Go to www.hccs.edu.
















Fall Composition I

Calendar: Weeks 1-3


Week 1

Tuesday, August 31

Introduction to Composition I

  • Review Attendance, Syllabus and Calendar
  • Discuss Purposes of Class and Assignments
  • Write journal about Composition Skills (What skills do you feel you need to improve (i.e. Reading, Writing, Listening Speaking, etc)

Assignment: Buy textbooks and read “Salvation” (142-45) and “Learning to Read and Write” (94-99) and McGraw 20-32



Thursday, September 2

Critical Reading Process

  • Read and discuss McGraw 20-32, do exercise 2.1
  • Read Narrative essays “Salvation” 142-45, “Learning to Read and Write” 94-99
  • Follow Critical Reading Process (Preview, Annotation, Summary, Response, Re-read, Connections)

Assignment: Brainstorm Narrative essay topics, Read McGraw 120-36, “Shooting an Elephant” (203-209), “Mother Tongue” (249-54


Week 2

Tuesday, September 7

Personal Narrative Essay

  • Choose a topic for a first person Narrative about a specific event, experience or conflict that taught you a valuable lesson.
  • Review Descriptive strategies
  • Read and respond to “Shooting an Elephant” and “Mother Tongue”

Assignment: Begin first draft of Narrative essay


Thursday, September 9

Organize Memories, Events and Descriptions

  • Review Narrative strategies and organization
  • Outline and compare “Salvation” and “Shooting an Elephant”
  • Write first draft of Narrative essay

Assignment: Bring in Narrative first draft

Read “On Being a Cripple” (157-67), McGraw 76-95  Study for quiz


Week 3

Tuesday, September 14

Take Story Quiz

Revise and edit Narrative essay. Read McGraw 76-95

Read and discuss “On Being a Cripple”

Assignment: Bring in Narrative Portfolio; read story packet


Thursday, September 16

Turn in Narrative Portfolio

Read and Compare “Two Kinds” and “Everyday Use”

Discuss Gender Case Study assignment

Assignment: Read “Why Women Smile” (324-31) and “On Being a Cripple” (157-67)

Course Information

A syllabus hasn't been posted for this course yet.

1301 Syllabus