ENGL 5389 Seminar on Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking Summer II 2010

Margaret Lowry

Tim Morris

1030-1230 MTWTh

310 Preston Hall

office hours by appointment
Lowry 203E Carlisle Hall 817.272.2488
mlowry at uta dot edu
Morris 203C Carlisle Hall 817.272.2739
tmorris at uta dot edu

office mailbox 203 Carlisle Hall

mailing address Box 19035, UTA 76019

to the schedule of readings and assignments

reading list

to buy:

provided free:

syllabus: This syllabus may be updated as the semester goes on. We may post updated versions that indicate readings, discussion plans, and reference materials. However, every component of your grade is shown here at the beginning. Please refer to the date and time of printing (at the bottom of each page) to see when the version you are holding was printed. For continuous updates look on line at http://www.uta.edu/english/tim/courses/5389su10/5389main.html

course description and student learning outcomes: This seminar investigates problems and approaches to teaching composition and reading to first-year college students. Readings concentrate on current theories of composition, reading, and critical thinking. Although the course is specifically oriented towards training new graduate teaching assistants at UTA, it is possible to adapt material to other courses and other levels of instruction. Students will learn how to/be able to:

Descriptions of Major Assignments with Due Dates:

I. Summary-Responses. You will need to respond to all assigned articles/essays from the email "handouts." Summary responses are DUE on 12 August. Incomplete assignments will not receive full credit. Write approximately 1-page-long (DS) summary responses. Be sure to have the following three parts in each of your summary-responses:

  1. Summarize: In two or three sentences (a short paragraph – approx. 50 words), restate in your own words the author's main argument and support reasons.
  2. Synthesize: In the next paragraph or two, weave together ideas/material from the reading with something else. That "something else" can be information/ideas from prior readings/class discussions or personal prior knowledge (especially try to draw on personal experience as a student or teacher).
  3. Apply: Try to think of a way that the reading might apply to or influence your own teaching practice: is this an idea to try (how so)? Or is this an idea to avoid (why)?

II. Develop a detailed syllabus and course calendar for ENGL 1301 and write an essay (2 pages DS) that explains your approach to teaching 1301. Think of this essay as a rationale for your syllabus. Incorporate explicit references to relevant course readings, class discussions, and other class activities. DUE 2 August.

III. Complete the major ENGL 1301 assignments:

IV. Observe an ENGL 1301 or ENGL 1302 class and write a brief (2 pages DS) report on the observation. DUE 12 August.

V. Final project. DUE 16 August: Consider the following questions throughout GTA Training, and write an essay (5-7 pages DS) that reflects on them. On 16 August, you will also give a five-minute presentation based on this final paper.

  1. Describe your own background, training, and experience in the teaching of composition.
  2. Why do you want to teach composition?
  3. What are your guiding goals, values, ideals or principles for teaching composition?
  4. What theoretical paradigms will inform your teaching? And why?
  5. What specific classroom practices or strategies do you plan to use?
  6. Describe some negative examples of teaching or teaching composition and explain what you plan to do differently.
  7. Describe some examples of teaching that you will emulate and explain why.
  8. Consider to what extent teaching is a matter of personality or persona or performance. Consider how you can most effectively play on your own personality to develop a successful teaching style.
  9. Consider how your gender, sexual orientation, race/ethnicity, social class, disabled/nondisabled status and/or religion will affect your approach. Consider whether and how your politicized identity categories—whether normative or not—will affect your teaching.

grading: Your grade for the course will be based on your satisfactory completion of all five categories of major assignments (see descriptions & due dates above). This course is guided but ungraded: you will receive extensive feedback throughout the course, but you will not receive letter grades until the end of the semester. All GTAs must successfully complete the course in order to start assistantships/fellowships in the fall. No incompletes will be given.

attendance policy: Regular and prompt attendance are indications of professionalism and reliability. Missing class and/or coming to class late will jeopardize your grade and your assistantship.

drop policy: A grade of W may be assigned if a student chooses to withdraw from a class after Census date, but prior to the last date to drop posted in the Universityís Academic Calendar. However, the grade of W is not automatically awarded. Graduate Students must consult with their Graduate Advisor before withdrawing from a class. Further, graduate students must secure the permission of their instructors and be passing the course (have a grade of A, B, C or P) at the time they intend to withdraw to receive a grade of W.

academic dishonesty policy: It is the philosophy of The University of Texas at Arlington that academic dishonesty is a completely unacceptable mode of conduct and will not be tolerated in any form. All persons involved in academic dishonesty will be disciplined in accordance with University regulations and procedures. Discipline may include suspension or expulsion from the University. "Scholastic dishonesty includes but is not limited to cheating, plagiarism, collusion, the submission for credit of any work or materials that are attributable in whole or in part to another person, any act designed to give unfair advantage to a student or the attempt to commit such acts." [Regents' Rules and Regulations, Part One, Chapter Vi, Section 3, Subsection 3.2, Subdivision 3.22]

disability policy: The University of Texas at Arlington is on record as being committed to both the spirit and letter of federal equal opportunity legislation; reference Public Law 93112--The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. With the passage of new federal legislation entitled Americans with Disabilities Act - (ADA), pursuant to section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, there is renewed focus on providing this population with the same opportunities enjoyed by all citizens. As faculty members, we are required by law to provide "reasonable accommodation" to students with disabilities, so as not to discriminate on the basis of that disability. Student responsibility primarily rests with informing faculty at the beginning of the semester and in providing authorized documentation through designated administrative channels.

student success: The University of Texas at Arlington supports a variety of student success programs to help you connect with the University and achieve academic success. They include learning assistance, developmental education, advising and mentoring, admission and transition, and federally funded programs. Students requiring assistance academically, personally, or socially should contact the Office of Student Success Programs at 817-272-6107 for more information and appropriate referrals.

schedule of readings and assignments

All readings and assignments are DUE by the start of class on the date listed.


Tuesday 13 July Welcome and introduction, preview assignments and course calendar, English Department tour. READINGS: Wilhoit Ch. 1.

Wednesday 14 July Introduction to Composition and ENGL 1301. Diagnostic essays. READINGS: Lindemann Chs. 1-4 and pp. 226-30; FYW Ch. 1 (Intro to Argument); Bartholomae, "Inventing the University"; FYE course descriptions and learning outcomes.

Thursday 15 July Rhetorical Situation. READINGS: FYW Ch. 2 (Rhetorical Situation); Bitzer, "The Rhetorical Situation"; TSIS Preface, Introduction, Ch. 1; Lindemann Ch. 5-6.


Monday 19 July Reading and Writing Processes. READINGS: FYW Ch. 11 (Reading and Writing Processes); Lindemann Ch. 7; Birnbaum, "Reflective Thought"; Wilson and Anderson, "What They Don't Know Will Hurt Them"; TSIS Ch. 2. Assign Discourse Community Memoir.

Tuesday 20 July Identifying and Developing Claims. READINGS: FYW Ch. 3 (Claims); TSIS Ch. 4-7; Rodriguez, "The Achievement of Desire"; Eighner, "Dumpster Diving"; Tannen, "Marked Women."

Wednesday 21 July Reading and Writing Processes cont. READINGS: Lindemann Ch. 8-12. First drafts of DCM due.

Thursday 22 July Proofs and Peer Review. READINGS: FYW Ch. 4 (Proofs); Peer review readings TBA. Peer reviews of DCMs due.


Monday 26 July A Journal for Jordan. Introduce Synthesis Essay, OneBook Essay, and Visual Argument. READINGS: A Journal for Jordan. Final draft of DCM due.

Tuesday 27 July Syllabus Development Workshop. Read Lindemann Ch. 15 and excerpts from Lemov. Review Wilhoit Ch. 2, ENGL 1301 sample syllabus, and FYE Teacher's Guide.

Wednesday 28 July Designing Mini Lessons/Teaching Synthesis. Introduce Synthesis Essay. READINGS: Essays in Gender, Race, and Class OneBook unit on MavSpace (Scott and Leonhardt, Deresiewicz, McIntosh, Dalton, Hamblin, Rose, Fulbeck, Payne); Wilhoit Ch. 7.

Thursday 29 July Leading Class Discussion/Teaching Synthesis. READINGS: TSIS Ch. 3, 11-12; Essays in Masculine and Feminine Beauty OneBook unit on MavSpace (Bordo; Rubin, Fitts, and Becker; Cofer; Haydar; "Building the Male Body"; Theroux); review Wilhoit Ch. 7; Jim Warren's class discussion handout.


Monday 2 August Developing Writing Assignments. READINGS: Lindemann Ch. 13; Wilhoit Ch. 4; Essays in War and Peace Unit on MavSpace (O'Brien, Sen, Nye, Dance et al, Gilbertson, Sacco, Jehad, Bush); and Smith and Watson's "A Tool Kit: Twenty Strategies for Reading Autobiography" (on MavSpace). Draft Syllabus Due.

Tuesday 3 August Responding to Students' Writing. Conferencing. Web-Based Technologies in the Composition Classroom. READINGS: Lindemann Ch. 14 and 16; Wilhoit Ch. 5 and 8; Murray, "The Listening Eye"; Booth, "The Rhetorical Stance"; Porter, "Pedagogy of Charity."

Wednesday 4 August Grading. READINGS: Lindemann Ch. 14; Wilhoit Ch. 6; Sommers, "Responding to and Evaluating Student Writing"; Smith, "Genre of the End Comment"; sample grading rubrics. Draft Synthesis Essay Due.

Thursday 5 August Start OneBook Assignment. READINGS: A Journal for Jordan.


Monday 9 August Classroom Management and Plagiarism. READINGS: Wilhoit Ch. 9; Student Conduct website (http://www.uta.edu/studentaffairs/conduct/); WPA statement on defining and avoiding plagiarism (http://www.wpacouncil.org/node/9); Excerpts from Lemov TBA. Final Synthesis Essay Due.

Tuesday 10 August Addressing the Needs of Students from Diverse Backgrounds. READINGS: Land and Whitley, "Evaluating Second-Language Essays"; Moss and Walters, "Rethinking Diversity."

Wednesday 11 August Writing Center. Visual Argument. OneBook Essay Due.

Thursday 12 August Senior GTA Panel. Teaching observation write up/Summary responses due.


Monday 16 August Present visual arguments/final projects. Lunch. Visual arguments and final project due. READING FOR NEW GTAS: Office of Graduate Studies GTA Handbook.

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