Writing for Graduate Studies: A 5-week intensive course

Sample Syllabus for Intensive Academic ESL Writing Program

5 Weeks; College level

 

Rationale: Understanding research writing for publication is essential for graduate students. This course will review the basics of college writing and introduce the process of writing a research paper. For week 4, students will complete an 8-10 page research paper on a topic of their choice accompanied by a research proposal, research outline, annotated bibliography, abstract, and letter to editor (for potential publication). All assignments will be completed in an on-line writing journal/blog (if possible) and students will deeply examine the significance of peer review, audience, and writing revision.

 

Week 1

                Day 1 – Introduction to course

·        Reading: “What is I?” by Hayao Kawai

·        Activity: Creation of blog/online writing journal

·        Discussion: What makes an effective essay?

·        Homework: Narrative essay, answering the question, “What is I?”; 2-3 pages, double-spaced

                Day 2 – Complete journal creation; intro to other genres of writing

·        Reading: “Shitty First Drafts” by Anne LaMott

·        Activity: Read and respond to classmates’ writing; read examples of descriptive writing

·        Discussion: The revision process

·        Homework: Descriptive essay, topic of student’s choice; 2-3 pages, double-spaced

                Day 3 – Peer feedback and responding to writing

·        Reading: “Responding to Other Students’ Writing” by Richard Straub

·        Activity: Read and respond to classmates’ writing; read examples of expository writing; practice peer response

·        Discussion: What makes an effective essay?

·        Homework: Expository essay, topic of student’s choice; 2-3 pages, double-spaced

 

                Day 4 – Intro to research writing

·        Reading: “Writing for an Audience” by Linda Flower

·        Activity: Using the internet for research

·        Discussion: The differences between college and graduate writing; importance of considering audience

·        Homework: Choose topic for research essay and write research proposal; 3-5 paragraphs

Goal: This week’s goals were: 1) to introduce students to three common genres of writing – narrative, descriptive, and expository; 2) for students to create their writing journals; 3) to introduce students to the concepts of revision and peer feedback; 4) to address the importance of considering audience when writing; 5) to introduce approaches to gathering research information; 6) to discuss common errors students make and characteristics of effective writing; and 7) to plan a research paper.

 

Week 2

                Day 1 – Finding sources for research; annotated bibliography

·        Reading: Students will read classmates’ research proposals

·        Activity: How to identify peer-reviewed sources for research

·        Discussion: Annotated bibliography

·        Homework: To find and annotate 3 peer-reviewed sources and 2 other sources that can be used in the research paper

 

                Day 2 – Pre-writing techniques

·        Reading: “The Maker’s Eye” by Donald Murray

·        Activity: Mindmaps, outlines, and free writing

·        Discussion: Managing writing anxiety

·        Homework: Re-visit research proposal and make changes as needed; find one more peer-reviewed source and one other source

 

                Day 3 – Research outline

·        Reading: Review of research sources to examine format

·        Activity: Re-visitand complete research outline

·        Discussion: The common format of research writing; why outline?

·        Homework: Complete outline; find one more peer-reviewed source and one other source

 

                Day 4 – Getting started on the research paper; publication

·        Activity: We wil luse this class time to begin our papers. I’ll consult with each student during class.

·        Discussion: Where, how, and when to publish

·        Homework: Reflective letter on what the student has learned so far in the course: Suggestions for revision of class; teacher feedback and evaluation, reflection on students’ own writing processes, ideas for student improvement, etc.; 2-3 paragraphs, double-spaced

 

Goal: This week’s goals were: 1) to become familiar with the concept of ‘research writing’; 2) to create an annotated bibliography; 3) to practice pre-writing activities; 4) to discuss writing anxiety; 5) to revise the research proposal; 6) to create a research outline; 7) to consider the format of a research paper;8) to consider publication and the significance of audience; 9) to consult with the instructor; 9) to reflect on the overall learning process; and 10) to begin the actual research writing process.

 

Week 3

                Day 1 – Introduction and literature review;  audience re-visited

·        Activity: Examine the introductions and literature review sections of articles we’re using for research

·        Discussion: How does knowing where we might publish affect our writing process? Discussion of plagiarism

·        Homework: Complete 2-3 pages of the research paper

                Day 2 – Methodology

·        Activity: Examine methods sections of articles we’re using for research.

·        Discussion: Protection of subjects (human/animal)

·        Homework: Continue working on research paper

 

                Day 3 – Results

·        Activity: Examine the results sections of articles we’re using for research

·        Discussion: Methods of data analysis

·        Homework: Continue working on research paper

 

                Day 4 – Discussion & conclusion

·        Activity: Examine the discussion and conclusion sections of articles we’re using for research

·        Discussion: Making suggestions for future research; drawing conclusions

·        Homework: Complete first draft or research paper

 

 

Goal: This week’s goals were: 1) to become familiar with the parts of a research project;2) to discuss issues of plagiarism; 3) to examine what makes a good literature review; 4) to examine research methodologies; 5) to examine methods of data analysis; 6) to examine effective conclusions; 7) to complete the first draft of the research paper.

 

Week 4

                Day 1 – Peer review workshop #1

·        Activity: Readand respond to classmates’ drafts

·        Discussion: Making suggestions for revision

·        Homework: Complete a second draft of the research paper

 

                Day 2 – Peer review workshop #2; letter to editors

·        Activity: Create a letter to an editor for use when submitting research for publication

·        Discussion: Making suggestions for future research; drawing conclusions

·        Homework: Complete a third draft of the research paper

 

                Day 3 – Peer review workshop #3; writing the abstract

·        Activity: Read and respond to classmates’ drafts; write the abstract

·        Homework: Complete the final draft of the research paper; write end of term reflective letter on the learning process: Reflective letter on what the student has learned so far in the course: Suggestions for revision of class; teacher feedback and evaluation, reflection on students’ own writing processes, ideas for student improvement, etc.; 2-3 paragraphs, double-spaced

                Day 4 – Final papers due; meetings with students; in-class party

 

Goal: This week’s goals were: 1) to workshop a near-finished draft; 2) to discuss and create letters to publishers; 3) to continue the peer review process; 4) to write an abstract; 5) to complete a final draft of the paper; 5) to conference with the instructor; and 6) to reflect on the overall learning process.

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Writing for Graduate Studies: A 5-week intensive course

Sample Syllabus for Intensive Academic ESL Writing Program

5 Weeks; College level

 

Rationale: Understanding research writing for publication is essential for graduate students. This course will review the basics of college writing and introduce the process of writing a research paper. For week 4, students will complete an 8-10 page research paper on a topic of their choice accompanied by a research proposal, research outline, annotated bibliography, abstract, and letter to editor (for potential publication). All assignments will be completed in an on-line writing journal/blog (if possible) and students will deeply examine the significance of peer review, audience, and writing revision.

 

Week 1

                Day 1 – Introduction to course

·        Reading: “What is I?” by Hayao Kawai

·        Activity: Creation of blog/online writing journal

·        Discussion: What makes an effective essay?

·        Homework: Narrative essay, answering the question, “What is I?”; 2-3 pages, double-spaced

                Day 2 – Complete journal creation; intro to other genres of writing

·        Reading: “Shitty First Drafts” by Anne LaMott

·        Activity: Read and respond to classmates’ writing; read examples of descriptive writing

·        Discussion: The revision process

·        Homework: Descriptive essay, topic of student’s choice; 2-3 pages, double-spaced

                Day 3 – Peer feedback and responding to writing

·        Reading: “Responding to Other Students’ Writing” by Richard Straub

·        Activity: Read and respond to classmates’ writing; read examples of expository writing; practice peer response

·        Discussion: What makes an effective essay?

·        Homework: Expository essay, topic of student’s choice; 2-3 pages, double-spaced

 

                Day 4 – Intro to research writing

·        Reading: “Writing for an Audience” by Linda Flower

·        Activity: Using the internet for research

·        Discussion: The differences between college and graduate writing; importance of considering audience

·        Homework: Choose topic for research essay and write research proposal; 3-5 paragraphs

Goal: This week’s goals were: 1) to introduce students to three common genres of writing – narrative, descriptive, and expository; 2) for students to create their writing journals; 3) to introduce students to the concepts of revision and peer feedback; 4) to address the importance of considering audience when writing; 5) to introduce approaches to gathering research information; 6) to discuss common errors students make and characteristics of effective writing; and 7) to plan a research paper.

 

Week 2

                Day 1 – Finding sources for research; annotated bibliography

·        Reading: Students will read classmates’ research proposals

·        Activity: How to identify peer-reviewed sources for research

·        Discussion: Annotated bibliography

·        Homework: To find and annotate 3 peer-reviewed sources and 2 other sources that can be used in the research paper

 

                Day 2 – Pre-writing techniques

·        Reading: “The Maker’s Eye” by Donald Murray

·        Activity: Mindmaps, outlines, and free writing

·        Discussion: Managing writing anxiety

·        Homework: Re-visit research proposal and make changes as needed; find one more peer-reviewed source and one other source

 

                Day 3 – Research outline

·        Reading: Review of research sources to examine format

·        Activity: Re-visitand complete research outline

·        Discussion: The common format of research writing; why outline?

·        Homework: Complete outline; find one more peer-reviewed source and one other source

 

                Day 4 – Getting started on the research paper; publication

·        Activity: We wil luse this class time to begin our papers. I’ll consult with each student during class.

·        Discussion: Where, how, and when to publish

·        Homework: Reflective letter on what the student has learned so far in the course: Suggestions for revision of class; teacher feedback and evaluation, reflection on students’ own writing processes, ideas for student improvement, etc.; 2-3 paragraphs, double-spaced

 

Goal: This week’s goals were: 1) to become familiar with the concept of ‘research writing’; 2) to create an annotated bibliography; 3) to practice pre-writing activities; 4) to discuss writing anxiety; 5) to revise the research proposal; 6) to create a research outline; 7) to consider the format of a research paper;8) to consider publication and the significance of audience; 9) to consult with the instructor; 9) to reflect on the overall learning process; and 10) to begin the actual research writing process.

 

Week 3

                Day 1 – Introduction and literature review;  audience re-visited

·        Activity: Examine the introductions and literature review sections of articles we’re using for research

·        Discussion: How does knowing where we might publish affect our writing process? Discussion of plagiarism

·        Homework: Complete 2-3 pages of the research paper

                Day 2 – Methodology

·        Activity: Examine methods sections of articles we’re using for research.

·        Discussion: Protection of subjects (human/animal)

·        Homework: Continue working on research paper

 

                Day 3 – Results

·        Activity: Examine the results sections of articles we’re using for research

·        Discussion: Methods of data analysis

·        Homework: Continue working on research paper

 

                Day 4 – Discussion & conclusion

·        Activity: Examine the discussion and conclusion sections of articles we’re using for research

·        Discussion: Making suggestions for future research; drawing conclusions

·        Homework: Complete first draft or research paper

 

 

Goal: This week’s goals were: 1) to become familiar with the parts of a research project;2) to discuss issues of plagiarism; 3) to examine what makes a good literature review; 4) to examine research methodologies; 5) to examine methods of data analysis; 6) to examine effective conclusions; 7) to complete the first draft of the research paper.

 

Week 4

                Day 1 – Peer review workshop #1

·        Activity: Readand respond to classmates’ drafts

·        Discussion: Making suggestions for revision

·        Homework: Complete a second draft of the research paper

 

                Day 2 – Peer review workshop #2; letter to editors

·        Activity: Create a letter to an editor for use when submitting research for publication

·        Discussion: Making suggestions for future research; drawing conclusions

·        Homework: Complete a third draft of the research paper

 

                Day 3 – Peer review workshop #3; writing the abstract

·        Activity: Read and respond to classmates’ drafts; write the abstract

·        Homework: Complete the final draft of the research paper; write end of term reflective letter on the learning process: Reflective letter on what the student has learned so far in the course: Suggestions for revision of class; teacher feedback and evaluation, reflection on students’ own writing processes, ideas for student improvement, etc.; 2-3 paragraphs, double-spaced

                Day 4 – Final papers due; meetings with students; in-class party

 

Goal: This week’s goals were: 1) to workshop a near-finished draft; 2) to discuss and create letters to publishers; 3) to continue the peer review process; 4) to write an abstract; 5) to complete a final draft of the paper; 5) to conference with the instructor; and 6) to reflect on the overall learning process.

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