Writing Portfolio

Assignment 1 Due Thursday 25 Noon CST
Discussion Topic
In this discussion thread, reflect on EN106 and your portfolio project. In addition to the required question, choose two of the numbered questions. (Some of these questions are adapted from Greene and Lidinsky and Elmhurst College professor Dr. Bridget O’Rourke.) Hopefully, this discussion will spark ideas for the reflective essay that you will write this unit for inclusion in your portfolio.

The portfolio for this course asks you to demonstrate your ability with the five core learning outcomes of the course: Process, Focus, Development, Rhetorical Strategies, and Conventions. Review the core learning outcomes and rubric in the Portfolio assignment, and then choose one learning outcome to discuss. Write about a paragraph that describes your understanding of this particular learning outcome, and your own progress toward it. Do you meet expectations? Exceed them? Do you still have significant work to do?

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Choose Two:
1. Think back to the start of the term. What did you expect or want from this course? What will your portfolio of writing reveal about what you got out of this course? Did you learn what you expected to? Are you surprised by what you learned?
2. How did you choose the essays to include in your portfolio? What is important about each one? How has each essay evolved since you first started working on it?
3. In what ways will your portfolio represent your best work? In what ways did you stretch yourself in these writing projects? What is new for you in these writing projects? What should your instructor notice in the portfolio that you will take away with you from this course?
4. What does your portfolio reveal about what you do especially well as a writer?
5. What does your portfolio reveal about the challenges that you face as a writer? Where are you still stuck or struggling? What do you wish we could do over or spend more time learning about?
6. What is the next step for you as a writer? What do you need to learn next? What skills still need practice? What writing challenges do you anticipate facing in your upcoming coursework? In your profession?

Assignment 2 Due Wenesday 24 Noon CST
Peer Review Process
The process for this unit’s peer review will be as follows:
Step One: As early in the unit as possible, but definitely by Wednesday midnight CST, prepare your draft.
Step Two: Attach your draft to your discussion post in .doc, .docx, or .pdf by Wednesday midnight. In the body of your post, give us a paragraph or so of context: why you selected this essay for the portfolio, what areas of the essay you are pleased with, and which areas you believe need more work. Then, describe those errors that you commonly make (referring to “The Top Twenty” in Easy Writer) and the elements of your paper you would like your peer reader to help you improve.

Step Three: Identify another student whose essay has not yet been peer-reviewed. Read the essay and respond to the writer no later than Friday midnight CST. I suggest you use the line-editing strategy called “beginning at the bottom” to give the essay a good, close read for distracting errors. Simply begin at the end of the essay, and move sentence by sentence backwards.
When reading the essay, you might:
· Look for sentences that begin with “There is….” Sentences that rely on this construction over-use “be” verbs (is, are, was, were, been) and can be tightened (see Easy Writer, pp. 101-102 for strategies to recommend to the writer).
· Look for “empty” words (i.e., “kind of” or “thing”) that can be removed or vague modifiers (i.e., “definitely,” “major,” “really,” “like,” and “very”) that don’t add meaning (see Easy Writer, p. 100-101).
· Look for places were apostrophes should be present to indicate possession, and note needed changes (see Easy Writer, pp. 122-125).
· Look for another common error: lack of agreement between pronoun and antecedent (see Easy Writer, pp. 84-87). This most often occurs when a writer has referred to a singular antecedent using a plural pronoun. For instance, this sentence is in error: “The writer accomplished their purpose.” In fact, “their” should be “his” or “her.”
· Look for sentences that start with a subordinating word (see Easy Writer, pp. 96-100 for a list of subordinating words), often indicating a sentence fragment (see Easy Writer, pp. 90-94).
· Note the writer’s sentence variety (or lack thereof) and recommend a paragraph that could easily be revised.
· Note (by paragraph number) the areas of the paper that need more attention to sentence- level concerns, or that contain a blatant spelling or grammar error or typo.

Assignment 3 Due Sunday 28 by Noon CST

Our attention shifts to preparation for the final portfolio, which is due at the end of this unit. Your portfolio should be submitted no later than 12:00 pm CST (Noon) on Sunday. The portfolio counts as 20% of your overall grade in the course.

Final Portfolio Guidelines
Required Components: 
· A reflective essay (about 4 full pages, double-spaced)
· Your two best essays from this class, each with further revision
· Artifacts of your writing process
Length: Your reflective essay must be between 900-1200 words. Your two best essays should be as long as they need to be fully achieve their rhetorical purposes.
Style/Format: The revised essays essays should be formatted in a standard scholarly format. (Most students follow MLA or APA guidelines, which are outlined in Easy Writer.) No matter what format you follow, be sure to do the following:
· Use 12 point, Times New Roman font, double-spaced.
· Use 1-inch margins top, bottom, and sides.
· Although no cover page is needed, you should include your name, my name, the course 
Works Cited/References: Those essays that refer to outside sources must include a page of Works Cited, References, or whatever bibliography is required by the guidelines you choose. 
Deadline: Submit the portfolio as a single file to Submit Assignment no later than Midnight CST on Sunday at the end of this unit.

Your portfolio will be evaluated as a whole according to the following assessment standards. Please note that while these standards are similar to those used to grade your essays throughout the course, they are not identical. Please read through these assessment criteria and ensure that your portfolio demonstrates each outcome. In general terms, significant weakness in any one of these areas reduces the grade of your portfolio by a letter grade. However, serious weakness in one area can lead to the loss of two or three letter grades or to a failing grade.

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