5. Course Requirements
Any form of writing is a skill; it is not easy to learn (or teach), and meaningful progress only comes with practice.
- In high school, your teacher may have called your attention to every
single spelling and punctuation mistake on your rough drafts, and then
given you points for correcting them.
- In college, however, you are
expected to develop the ability to edit and proofread your own papers.
Hence, I do not plan to mark every mistake I find when I review your drafts.
I may mark up only one section of your paper, to show you the kinds of problems that you should address; it will then be your responsibility to identify more of those same mistakes -- as well as other mistakes that I did not mark.
This same philosophy -- which is not unique to me or to Seton Hill -- also explains why I do not assign, censor, proofread, or fact-check articles that appear in The Setonian. My goal is not to produce a perfect newspaper; rather, my goal is to create an educational environment where students can develop important skills that will be demanded of them in the outside world.
At any time during the semester, if you want additional feedback, feel free to make an appointment with me, or go to the writing center.
The class format will involve workshops, discussion, and some lecture.
- Keep up with the readings. Reflect on them before coming to class, and help sustain an active, positive learning environment. (We won't have time to discuss every reading in glass, so there is an online component that I will introduce shortly.)
- Please keep copies of rough drafts of papers; that is, instead of saving overtop of your old files, save each new version with a new name "Exercise 1 - Aug 30," "Exercise 1 - Sep 3." I may want to talk with you about your rough drafts before recording a grade.
- I will often send out bulk e-mails to the addresses on file in GriffinGate. If you check a different address more regularly, please use SHU's e-mail forwarding service so that you don't miss important updates.
- Although this course does include a great deal of online information, it is not an online class. That means in-person attendance and face-to-face interaction are important components of the course. It also means that I will not be making any attempt to ensure that the online material duplicates everything we cover in class.