English Composition I with Sarah Surma

Course Content from McGraw-Hill
Course Number: ENG101
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In English Composition I, students learn how to develop better writing skills by identifying and understanding the steps involved in the writing process-all in this one online English course.

The online English composition course examines five fundamental types of writing: compare and contrast, argumentative, persuasive, narrative, and descriptive. Lessons in this online English course also highlight the importance of proper grammar, punctuation, and spelling, and explain effective research techniques, editing, and revision.

In Professor Surma's version of ENG101 students can expect a much more engaging course including,

Diverse Communication Methods

  • E-mail communication gives students the opportunity to submit partial work for review or ask less urgent questions.
  • In-class discussion forums offer students a space to ask general assignment or course lesson questions as well as communicate with their peers.

Assignment Guidance Materials

  • Assignment guidance materials further explain assignment objectives and expectations, they provide helpful tips and sample thesis statements, and finally, they offer suggested essay structures.

Preliminary Essay Evaluations

  • Preliminary essay evaluations (optional) give students the opportunity to have their drafts evaluated by me prior to submitting the final copy for grading.

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professor
3
college credits
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Self Paced
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English
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24 Reviews
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  • 10/27/14 by Discovertoysto
    Great method of learning and achieving good results. Learn grammar, punctuation skills, and an overall guide to English literature.
    I was really able to learn good writing skills and improve my essay writing.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 10/27/14 by Discovertoysto
    Great method of learning and achieving good results. Learn grammar, punctuation skills, and an overall guide to English literature.
    I was really able to learn good writing skills and improve my essay writing.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 9/6/14 by eraye066
    This course is not hard. There is a second chance for each essay in case you do bad the first time. You learn how to write better grammar.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 8/29/14 by sp3dgoowin
    I needed to be able to take a class that I could do at my own pace. I also needed a class that allowed me to go back and reread items I had previously been taught. I also provided me easy to read and learn from additional links. They Professor got back to you immediately with clarifications.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 8/29/14 by sp3dgoowin
    I needed to be able to take a class that I could do at my own pace. I also needed a class that allowed me to go back and reread items I had previously been taught. I also provided me easy to read and learn from additional links. They Professor got back to you immediately with clarifications.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 8/28/14 by microg84
    This course was excellent! I really appreciated its in-depth coverage of the subject matter, combined with the many opportunities I was given to write essays and research papers. My only real critique is that there seems to be a disconnect between the instructors who review written drafts of assignments and the instructors providing the final grade. I had at least one instance of my primary instructor disagreeing with my secondary instructor's notes which was confusing. Generally speaking, however, the course provided a lot of great information and I gained a lot in taking it. Kudos and thanks!
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 8/28/14 by microg84
    This course was excellent! I really appreciated its in-depth coverage of the subject matter, combined with the many opportunities I was given to write essays and research papers. My only real critique is that there seems to be a disconnect between the instructors who review written drafts of assignments and the instructors providing the final grade. I had at least one instance of my primary instructor disagreeing with my secondary instructor's notes which was confusing. Generally speaking, however, the course provided a lot of great information and I gained a lot in taking it. Kudos and thanks!
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 8/21/14 by dspence33
    The professor was timely with corrections on papers and was also very nice. She answered any question I had on any assignment.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 8/21/14 by dspence33
    The professor was timely with corrections on papers and was also very nice. She answered any question I had on any assignment.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 7/30/14 by taylorleesam
    I found that this course took much longer to complete than the advertised 80 hours. While it was a good course, students should expect it to take much longer than SL says.
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    Overall Rating
  • 7/30/14 by taylorleesam
    I found that this course took much longer to complete than the advertised 80 hours. While it was a good course, students should expect it to take much longer than SL says.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 6/9/14 by eraye066
    This course is not hard. There is a second chance for each essay in case you do bad the first time. You learn how to write better grammar.
    Content Rating
    Overall Rating
  • 9/26/13 by whargrove2
    Professor Tidwell made a huge difference in this class! She is very supportive and responsive to student needs.
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  • 9/17/13 by elaynav
    This course was very thorough with thorough explanation of all assignments.
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  • 8/21/13 by eli
    English Composition is a very good course when it comes to improve ones writing skill as well as getting familiar with different types of writing.
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  • 8/21/13 by chamesrules
    The course was a lot of work. However, the professor was very helpful and encouraging. She graded assignments promptly allowing me to be able to revise and move on to the next topic quickly.
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  • 8/16/13 by davidh
    Gave me the ability to complete what i needed when i needed it.
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    Overall Rating
  • 7/30/13 by mosherosenblatt
    Each section has an online lesson that explains all the concepts relevant that part of the course. After reviewing the lesson, there is usually a quiz that helps solidify these concepts. The course helps one in constructing a well-written essay. The essays were often on topics of choice.
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  • 7/30/13 by bernardo.casares
    The English Composition I at Straighter Line shows students all the basic knowledge for academic writing. All the available resources are extremely helpful to gain knowledge and, the professor, if there is one, does the best job in explaining the topics that remained unclear.
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  • 7/15/13 by brynaes
    The English Composition I course was fairly easy as I did so alongside with a professor. I was able to ask any and all questions I had and they were answered pretty quickly. I enjoyed writing the essays as they gave me a chance to be challenged in a creative way. I would recommend this course to any student who needs to get through College courses in a quick but efficient manner.
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  • 9/26/12 by jstapel
    Sarah Tidwell, who graded most of my written assignments was amazing. She gave helpful suggestions and is a wonderful resource to Straighterline.
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  • 8/27/12 by linamrg91
    I loved the way Sarah Tidwell explained to me what needed to be corrected on the way I was writing my essays.
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  • 5/30/12 by timothy.austen
    Really enjoyed receiving commentary and corrections from one in particular of your graders, Sarah Tidwell. She provided excellent, helpful feedback and was incredibly prompt. When one of my essays was graded by another grader I was disappointed with the lack of depth to answers, and the brusque, unhelpful formatting of responses.
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  • 4/21/12 by Mcopfar
    I liked the material used such as purdue, and the lesson presentations. And there was one grader that was particularly helpful.Her name is Sarah Tidwell. When I recieved my draft papers back from her she was always SO helpful. She tried to focus on my strengths but also let me be aware of my weaknesses. She never made me feel intimidated or as if I was not doing things right. Some of them seem more focused on pointing out wrong things instead of acknowledging strengths.
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Sarah Surma|MA from the University of Phoenix

Total students servedTotal Students Served: 910 and counting

My Experience:
I received a Bachelor of Science in Human Services and Management and a Master of Arts in Education/Adult Education and Training/E-Learning from University of Phoenix. I have taught an array of online entry-level English courses where I specialize in assisting students develop their writing skills.

What Students Can Expect:
I have a passion for teaching online, and my dedication to student success is evident by my consistent presence and convenient availability in the virtual classroom. I understand that it is imperative for students to receive answers to their questions quickly so that they feel comfortable moving forward in the course and with assignments. When students understand course concepts, they gain a learning confidence that allows them to move through the course at their preferred pace. Students will also benefit from supplemental guidance materials that clearly explain assignment expectations as well as general writing tips.

Course Objectives

After completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Explain and identify the steps involved in the writing process.
  • Compose a strong thesis statement.
  • Organize an essay into a well written introduction, body, and conclusion.
  • Evaluate the different types of fictional and non-fictional readings.
  • Successfully identify and apply the use of analogy.
  • Identify and compose the following types of writing: argumentative, compare/contrast, descriptive, narrative, persuasive, and summary.
  • Employ proper research techniques.
  • Analyze and judge the validity of the various kinds of reading materials.
  • Correctly use the MLA style of citing.
  • Summarize and paraphrase without plagiarizing.
  • Successfully revise and edit all aspects of an essay.
  • Construct grammatically correct sentences.
  • Compose sentences and paragraphs with correct spelling and punctuation.
Topic Lesson Topic Subtopics Objectives
1 Proper Grammar: Friend or Foe?
  • The Most Common Grammatical Errors
  • Correcting Sentence Fragments
  • Subject Verb Agreement
  • Use of Jargon in Essays
  • Identify the common grammatical errors and apply the rules of correction to edit effectively.
  • Apply the rules of correcting sentence fragments when editing an essay to eliminate them.
  • Apply the rules of subject/verb agreement when editing an essay to eliminate agreement errors.
  • Add to the understanding and use of a basic vocabulary of literary items.
2 Punctuation and Spelling: The Finer Points
  • The Comma
  • The Apostrophe and Quotation Marks
  • Other Types of Punctuation
  • Improve Your Spelling
  • Demonstrate how effectively to use commas.
  • Effectively use apostrophes and quotation marks.
  • Employ the correct use of other types of punctuation.
  • Identify common errors in spelling and apply various strategies to eliminate spelling errors.
3 The Writing Process: You Can Do It!
  • Define Composition
  • Roadblocks to Effective Writing
  • Audience and Purpose
  • The Reading and Writing Link
  • Develop topic sentences that clearly support the thesis and the essay.
  • Identify the audience and purpose before beginning the process of writing an essay.
  • Explain and demonstrate the direct link between successful writing and comprehensive reading.
  • Explain the standard process involved in writing an essay.
4 Thesis Statements: What's the Point?
  • Weak Versus Strong Thesis Statements
  • Importance of Thesis Statements
  • Supporting Your Thesis Statement
  • Structure an essay using a strong beginning, middle, and end.
  • Select and narrow an essay topic and formulate a strong, effective thesis statement.
  • Organize the supporting details and specific evidence in the essay.

Research Paper Objective:

  • Develop a strong thesis statement for the research paper project.
5

Writing a Good Paragraph

& Researching Your Topic: Half the Battle!

  • The Introduction
  • Body of Work and Detail
  • The Conclusion
  • Utilizing Good Research Skills
  • Your Local Library
  • Proper Internet Research
  • Other Means of Research
  • Show appropriate development of the essay and the thesis using sentence variety and specific, coherent, relevant, and interesting details.
  • Make good use of topic sentences, transitions, and concluding statements within the essay.
  • Develop and compose a strong introductory paragraph.
  • Develop and compose a strong concluding paragraph.
  • Utilize proper researching and note-taking techniques for the research paper project.
  • Effectively research a topic in the library and online.
  • Evaluate sources on a given topic.
  • Explain the importance of maintaining integrity while researching.
  • Write a summary for the research paper project.
6 Popular Types of Writing: Who Knew?
  • Compare/Contrast Technique of Writing
  • Persuasive Technique of Writing
  • Descriptive Writing
  • Write a paragraph or essay using the comparison/contrast method.
  • Write a paragraph or essay demonstrating the use of persuasion as a writing strategy.
  • Develop skills in the use of the following strategy: descriptive writing.
7 Types of Readings: Can This Really Influence my Writing?
  • Narrative Writings
  • Non-Fiction Writings
  • Writing Using Analogy
  • Analyze and explain the link between comprehensive reading and successful writing.
  • Apply critical thinking to reading and writing.
  • Differentiate among the different types of analogies and use them in a narrative paragraph.

Research Paper Objective:

  • Develop an outline for the research paper project.
8 Analysis of Reading and Writing: Now What?
  • Comprehension of the Subject Matter
  • Retaining the Subject Matter
  • Forming Opinions
  • Real-World Application
  • Understand main ideas of a text used to write a research paper with an awareness of audience and purpose.
  • Interact with and summarize the text effectively.
  • Evaluate the text using critical and analytical skills to identify common logical fallacies.
  • Effectively write the first draft of an essay with an awareness of audience and purpose.
9 Using Evidence and Reference Materials Properly: Give Credit Where It's Due!
  • How Evidence Adds Legitimacy to an Essay
  • Proper Use of Citations
  • Plagiarism
  • Explain the importance of quality evidence in essay writing.
  • Write an essay following proper standard MLA guidelines.
  • Demonstrate the importance of maintaining integrity while researching and writing an essay or a longer paper.

Research Paper Objective:

  • Create a Works Cited page for the research paper project using MLA format.
10 The Process of Revising and Editing: You're Almost There!
  • The Revision Process
  • Revising Sentences
  • Revising Word Choices
  • The Editing Process
  • Revise your essay to ensure appropriate development of the essay with specific attention to cohesion, support, and organization.
  • Revise the first draft to include varied, interesting, and accurate sentences.
  • Edit and proofread the first draft to eliminate grammatical, spelling, and typographical errors.

Research Paper Objective:

  • Apply revision, editing, and proofreading techniques to rough draft of research paper project.
11 Checking Your Final Essay: You've Come This Far!
  • Strong Thesis
  • Development of Ideas
  • Proper Grammar
  • Check that the final draft contains a strong, well-written thesis statement that is directly linked with the main point of the essay.
  • Check that the final draft demonstrates clear organization, strong development through the use of a variety of sentence types, smooth transitions, and proper citing techniques.
  • Edit to ensure the final draft is free of grammatical and spelling errors.

Research Paper Objective:

  • Review your research paper to ensure it is ready for submission and grading.
12 Submission of the Final Draft of the Research Paper and Final Review
  • Review

Research Paper Objective:

  • Turn in research paper project.

There are no prerequisites to take English Composition I.

Required Textbook: This course has assigned reading.

Title: College Writing Skills eTextbook

ISBN: 9780077799830

Our Price: $51.70

Assigned reading material as part of taking this online course.
bookshelfWith every purchase of an eTextbook through StraighterLine, students have access to their texts via the Bookshelf App which syncs to their course, provides offline access for studying on the go, and more.
-OR-
book cover

The seventh edition of John Langan's College Writing Skills focuses on the essay using Langan's renowned clear writing style, as well as his wide range of writing assignments and activities that reinforce the four bases of effective writing: unity, support, coherence, and sentence skills. For this new edition, John Langan has added a variety of fresh elements to his proven approach.

Langan, John. College Writing Skills, 7th edition. McGraw-Hill, 2008. ISBN 9780073384092

This course follows the research guidelines of the Modern Language Association (MLA). These guidelines were most recently revised in 2003 in the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (6th ed.). A summary of these guidelines is provided in the Purdue Online Writing Lab.

StraighterLine provides a percentage score and letter grade for each course. A passing percentage is 70% or higher. If you have chosen a Partner College to award credit for this course, your final grade will be based upon that college's grading scale. Only passing scores will be considered by Partner Colleges for an award of credit.

All required assignments (even those that are ungraded) must be submitted in order to be issued a transcript.

There are a total of 1000 points in the course:

Topic Assessment Points Available
A1 Graded Quiz: Plagiarism NA
1 Graded Quiz: Transitions 30
1 Graded Quiz: The Kris Chronicles, Part 2: Banana Bread Brainstorm 60
2 Graded Quiz: Good Word Choices Positively Affect Your Writing...Or Is it Effect? 30
2 Graded Quiz: Homonyms 40
2 Graded Quiz: Grammar at Dinner 75
2 Graded Quiz: Grammar and Punctuation 100
3 Graded Quiz: Writing to Your Audience 90
5 Writing Assignment: Final Draft of the Descriptive Paragraph 10
5 Graded Quiz: Building a Better Paragraph 15
5 Graded Quiz: Website Validity 20
6 Writing Assignment: Final Draft of the Comparison/Contrast Writing Assignment 50
7 Writing Assignment: Final Draft of the Personal Narrative Writing Assignment 40
8 Graded Quiz: Text Analysis 30
8 Graded Quiz: A Different Look at the Mail 30
8 Writing Assignment: Final Draft of the Persuasive Writing Assignment 50
9 Graded Quiz: Works Cited 30
9 Writing Assignment: Final Draft of the Argumentative Writing Assignment 100
10 Graded Quiz: Different Perspectives 20
10 Final Graded Quiz: Be an Editor 30
Review Writing Assignment: Final Draft of the Research Writing Assignment 150
Total   1000

In English Composition I, students learn how to develop better writing skills by identifying and understanding the steps involved in the writing process-all in this one online English course.

The online English composition course examines five fundamental types of writing: compare and contrast, argumentative, persuasive, narrative, and descriptive. Lessons in this online English course also highlight the importance of proper grammar, punctuation, and spelling, and explain effective research techniques, editing, and revision.

In Professor Surma's version of ENG101 students can expect a much more engaging course including,

Diverse Communication Methods

  • E-mail communication gives students the opportunity to submit partial work for review or ask less urgent questions.
  • In-class discussion forums offer students a space to ask general assignment or course lesson questions as well as communicate with their peers.

Assignment Guidance Materials

  • Assignment guidance materials further explain assignment objectives and expectations, they provide helpful tips and sample thesis statements, and finally, they offer suggested essay structures.

Preliminary Essay Evaluations

  • Preliminary essay evaluations (optional) give students the opportunity to have their drafts evaluated by me prior to submitting the final copy for grading.

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