I. Course Catalog Description

English Composition I is a college level course in critical reading and writing designed to help students develop their ability to think critically, to organize their thoughts, and to express ideas clearly and effectively. The course will focus on the various modes of expository writing, such as process, description, narration, comparison, cause/effect, and analysis, and give significant focus to argumentation. Students will be introduced to documentation. Numerous in-class assignments are required in addition to extended essays written outside of class. Required of all students. This course is a transferIN course. 3 class hours.

Prerequisite(s): A grade of C or better in ENGL 011 and READ 011, or a grade of C or better or concurrent enrollment in ENGL 079, or a grade of B or better in ENGL 009, or SAT Writing score of 440 or greater and SAT Reading score of 420 or greater, or appropriate placement test scores.


II. Course Designation


This course is a:

  • UCC course


III. VU Liberal Education Outcomes met by this course:


  • Engage in articulate expression through critical reading and effective written, oral, and digital communication.
  • Evaluate ethical behavior as an individual and as a member of local and global communities.
  • Apply critical and creative thinking skills to solve problems.
  • Integrate knowledge and perspectives of different disciplines to answer complex questions.


IV. UCC/State Outcomes met by this course:


1. Written Communication

1.1.  Produce texts that use appropriate formats, genre conventions, and documentation

styles while controlling tone, syntax, grammar, and spelling.

1.2.  Demonstrate an understanding of writing as a social process that includes multiple

drafts, collaboration, and reflection.

1.3.  Read critically, summarize, apply, analyze, and synthesize information and concepts

in written and visual texts as the basis for developing original ideas and claims.

1.4.  Demonstrate an understanding of writing assignments as a series of tasks including

Identifying and evaluating useful and reliable outside sources.

1.5.  Develop, assert and support a focused thesis with appropriate reasoning and adequate evidence.

1.6.  Compose texts that exhibit appropriate rhetorical choices, which include attention to

audience, purpose, context, genre, and convention.

1.7.  Demonstrate proficiency in reading, evaluating, analyzing, and using material collected from electronic sources (such as visual, electronic, library databases, Internet sources, other official databases, federal government databases, reputable blogs, wikis, etc.).


V. Course Outcomes

            Students who complete this course will:

  1. Articulate how writing is a process by
    1. Understanding assignment, establishing controlling idea, and developing supporting content;
    2. Developing and reflecting upon drafts;
    3. Employing researched sources without plagiarizing;
  2. Generate ideas appropriate for the assignment by
    1. Exploring, researching, and narrowing the topic;
  3. Produce an appropriate final draft by
    1. Utilizing an appropriate tone for audience and purpose;
    2. Exploring and organizing appropriate content for various rhetorical modes;
    3. Developing effective thesis statements, introductions, and conclusions;
    4. Integrating outside sources;
    5. Constructing final drafts with effective paragraphs, transitions, and documentation;
  4. Revise to improve writing by
    1. Demonstrating peer and self-editing techniques, ensuring standards of written English;
  5. Read critically and write critically reflective papers by
    1. Comprehending, analyzing, and synthesizing researched content;
    2. Valuing multiple points of view, constructing counter-arguments and refutations;
    3. Establishing logical arguments while avoiding fallacious statements.


VI. Course Content

In this course, students will be expected to:

  1. Read critically in order to develop writing skills by
    1. Discovering, interpreting, and evaluating readings to develop ideas;
    2. Developing various short writings that demonstrate critical readings skills;
  2. Write well-organized essays with a clear introduction (featuring a solid thesis), body, and conclusion;
  3. In each essay, support the thesis statement with specific examples and details;
  4. Follow the standards of written English by
    1. Using appropriate sentence structure, avoiding fragments, run-ons, and comma splices;
    2. Focusing on appropriate/necessary punctuation, agreement, and spelling;
  5. Revise essays while developing peer-editing, self-editing, and reflective skills;
  6. Write a minimum of 5,000 words total, including
    1. An analysis essay, an argumentation essay, and a reflective portfolio;
    2. At least one essay incorporating outside sources using MLA style documentation;
  7. Conduct basic research by
    1. Using library resources, including electronic databases;
    2. Developing necessary skills to evaluate reliability of outside sources.


VII. Course Text and Materials Policy

  • Kirszner, Laurie G., and Stephen R. Mandell.  The Vincennes University Writers’ Handbook.  Boston:Thomson/Wadsworth, latest edition
  • Greene, Stuart, and April Lidinsky. From Inquiry to Academic Writing: A Text and Reader. Boston, MA: Bedford/St. Martins, latest edition.*
  • Austin, Michael. Reading the World: Ideas that Matter. New York: Norton, latest edition.*
  • Vincennes University Department of English.  English Composition I: A Guide to Writing and Word Processing.  Hayden-McNeil Publishing, latest edition.


*See individual instructor’s syllabus


VIII.    Course Grading Policy


Quizzes/Homework/Exercises                        10%

Critical Reading and Short Writings                10%

Revision and Reflection Activities                   10%

Essay Assignment                                          10%

Essay Assignment                                          10%

Analysis Essay                                                15%

Annotated Bibliography                                   05%

Argumentation Essay                                      15%

Portfolio                                                           15%


*Library/Documentation skills will be assessed as quizzes and an element of research writing.


Grading Scale                                    


A                     =                       93  - 100

A-                    =                       90  -   92

B+                   =                       87  -   89

B                     =                       83  -   86

B-                    =                       80  -   82

C+                   =                       77  -   79

C                     =                       70  -   76

D                     =                       60  -   69

F                     =                       59 and below


  • In order to successfully complete ENGL 101, a student must earn a grade of C or better. Students who complete the course with a grade of “D” or “F” must repeat ENGL 101.
  • Students who do not complete the course must repeat ENGL 101. Austin, Michael. Reading the World: Ideas that Matter. New York: Norton, latest edition.
  • Vincennes University Department of English.  English Composition I: A Guide to Writing and Word Processing.  Hayden-McNeil Publishing, latest edition.