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North Idaho College • Coeur d'Alene • English & Humanities • English

English Composition ENGL-101

  • Fall 2012
  • Section 42
  • 3.0 Credits
  • 08/27/2012 to 12/20/2012
  • Modified 08/20/2012

Contact Information

Instructor:  Annie T. Oakes

Email:  [email protected]

Office: Lee-Kildow Hall 204E

Phone: (208) 665-5067

Method of Course Delivery:

Online instruction on Blackboard site with individual and collaborative writing activities. Students must keep up with course deadlines but may not work ahead. Class activities will be posted at the beginning of each week. All assignments must be submitted for successful completion of the course.

Office Hours

  • Wednesday, 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM, LKH 204E

and by appointment


English 101 prepares students for the demands of academic and professional writing. Students will learn processes and strategies for writing clear, precise, and accurate prose and will demonstrate their abilities in a series of expository essays. Students will also learn to read, analyze, synthesize, and respond to a collection of written texts. This course is required for all degree programs. A grade of C- or above allows the student to enroll in ENGL 102.


North Idaho College English Faculty. Exploring the Purpose of Education. Southlake, TX: Fountainhead Press, 2012. ISBN: 978-1-59871-608-5

Lunsford, Andrea A. Easy Writer: A Pocket Reference. 4th ed. New York: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2010. ISBN: 978-0-312-65031-5

Zusak, Marcus. The Book Thief. New York: Knopf, 2007. ISBN: 978-0375842207

Reliable access to a computer for typing and revising your papers as Word documents. Problems with technology cannot interfere with timely completion of assignments.

Infallible, always-available Internet access, either at home, a library, or at a place that provides free Wi-fi. This is a basic and compulsory element of taking an online class.

Some method of keeping your course materials, such as a three-ring binder or a file folder for each assignment, allowing you to keep printed versions of your work. In addition, you should set up electronic file folders under "Eng 101-18" on your computer and a thumb-drive or other storage to keep all assignments organized and backed up. Please keep all drafts of your work until the semester is over.


After completing English 101, students should be able to:


 Use the writing process to create essays (primarily expository) that communicate ideas to a variety of audiences


  Write strong, clear prose
 a.Use words accurately
 b.Write clear and direct sentences that follow conventional structure, grammar and punctuation


 Develop essays that focus on a central idea, develop the idea adequately, and show organization and unity
4. Read and respond thoughtfully to peers' and published authors' essays, using them as models for good writing
5. Recognize and avoid plagiarism







Your Scores

Unit 1 Short Assg. (2 letters)




Unit 1 Major Paper (Personal Narrative: Education and Me)




Unit 1 Prewriting




Unit 1 Participation (Peer reviews, Discussion Thread posts)




Unit 2 Short Paper (Pers. history)




Unit 2 Major Paper (Rhetorical Analysis)




Unit 2 Prewriting




Unit 2 Participation (Peer reviews, Discussion Thread posts)




Unit 3 Short Paper (Pet Peeve)




Unit 3 Major Paper ("Student as Consumer")




Unit 3 Prewriting




Unit 3 Participation (Peer reviews, Discussion Thread posts)




Unit 4 Short Paper (Future 2022)




Unit 4 Major Paper (Novel Analysis)




Unit 4 Prewriting




Unit 4 Participation (Peer reviews, Discussion Thread posts)




MLA Quiz




Final Portfolio (2 revs. and Reflection)









Accumulated points will be assigned letter grades as follows:

A      93-100%                                                           C         73-76%

A-     90-92%                                                              C-        70-72%

B+    87-89%                                                              D+       67-69%

B      83-86%                                                              D         63-66%

B-     80-82%                                                              D-        60-62%

C+    77-79%                                                              F          0-59%

Course Policies

Non-Payment Information

You must attend and participate in the first week of class by responding to the two Week 1 Discussion Threads and posting your Diagnostic Essay by Friday of Week 1. Failure to do so will result in your being dropped from this class and may result in your financial aid award being reduced. If you are registered for a class and do not attend, you will still be liable for the tuition unless you drop the class. For Internet classes, attendance is based on participation in an instructional activity; you must complete the first week’s assignment(s) by the assignment due date. Drop for non-attendance occurs at 5:00 PM Pacific Time on the second Tuesday of the semester.

Additional Notes

This is a course about writing the essay -- to think, read, and write rhetorically (strategically and effectively, depending on the situation). You’ll inquire into different personal, academic, and civic contexts and read, analyze, and compose in different genres. You’ll also further develop flexible reading, discovery, and writing processes to help you develop as an academic and civic participant. Much of your work will involve different kinds of collaboration, including small group workshops, online discussions in designated Discussion Threads, and  conferences – all while preserving academic integrity. Self-assessment and reflection, as well as peer and teacher feedback, are important ways for you to make the most of the learning opportunities ENG 101 offers.


We will begin by reading, discussing, and writing about essays and our own ideas, identifying characteristics of good writing that will then serve as objectives for our own essays. Even objective essays can be creative, drawing on the diversity of personal experience and expertise each of us brings to the class. We will also focus on the expression of our ideas in clear, convincing prose.


Standards for this course, which the students as a class help to establish as they become comfortable with doing so, tend to be high. This course is crucial to success in college and life beyond it, and student-centered learning activities and a variety of student-support resources will help ensure your success. Students assume much of the responsibility for learning in this course, however, so this section is not for the unmotivated.

Class Community

Community is especially important in an online class. We will work together to create an environment that promotes collaborative learning and effective, thoughtful discussion. Student conduct codes at virtually all colleges ask students to respect the rights, privileges, and dignity of others in action and in speech. Class discussion directly relates to the success of papers through feedback and support. Class participation is evaluated based on the productivity, diplomacy, and relevance of discussion generated by each student. You will be asked to make substantive responses of different lengths (often 100-150 words) to improve development of ideas. Writing classes seem to cover provocative topics, but they must be a safe place for a variety of opinions and points of view to be expressed. You will have the opportunity to work with many of your classmates in large and small peer groups, and you should establish a “buddy system” to help one another in an emergency.


Your success in this course is largely up to you; if you engage wholeheartedly in it, striving to reach beyond your current level of proficiency, the class will be a rewarding experience. If, for whatever reason, this class is not a priority for you, the self-initiated nature of this section will not work to your benefit, and you might consider enrolling at another time.


It is your responsibility to become familiar with the Blackboard site for our classroom, so please use the college’s numerous training resources available. There are many people on campus well-equipped to train you on Blackboard, but I lack both the time and resources to do so. I will post announcements and course materials on our Angel site so that deadlines, handouts, and other materials will be available to you 24/7. You will find many other helpful resources there as well. It is also your responsibility to keep track of due dates and instructions.

Evidence of Writing Process

The pre-writing that you do is as important as the finished product. In fact, your contributions to discussion, completion of activities, and rough drafts are essential to showing evidence of your process. Assignments submitted without prewriting (one reason why your presence in the Discussion Threads is essential) will not be accepted.

Due Dates

Due dates are established at reasonable intervals. If you have made productive use of class time, followed instructions, and used adequate time management skills, you should be able to submit papers on time. They don’t have to be perfect; they just have to be done.


This policy is not open for negotiation. No late papers.


If you know you are going to be done ahead of time for a wedding inDenveror a volleyball tournament inLas Vegas, you are welcome to turn in papers early.  


Late Coupon:

To accommodate an emergency, each student may turn in one essay late, so long as it is submitted with pre-writing, is within one week of the due date, and is accompanied by a “Late Paper Coupon” which I will post on our Angel site. No essay will be accepted beyond one week past the original due date. Due to the scheduling requirements of student grading, the Unit #4 Major Paper and the Final Portfolio cannot be submitted late (and must be submitted according to any special format requirements)! To avoid confusion and lost papers and points, please cooperate with and assume personal responsibility for these rules. I am not responsible for papers not submitted according to the guidelines in this syllabus.


Specifically, please use the following format for submitting written assignments unless instructed otherwise or unless you’re following specific genre or medium conventions:


  • Provide a basic header in the upper left hand corner of page 1:
  • Double-space the text.
  • Use one-inch margins.
  • Use a standard 12-point font (like Times New Roman) or some equivalent.
  • Number all pages in the upper right hand corner starting with page 2.
  • Give assignments a title, centered just above the text and following the header.
  • Use a Works Cited page as needed.
    • Your name
    • Course section and number (e.g., ENG 101-18)
    • Instructor’s Name (spelled correctly)
    • Date


Keep copies of all your work, as hard copy and in electronic format, in more than one location, such as your hard drive and a memory stick or in some type of online storage. Emailing your papers to yourself is a good safeguard against lost work.


Consider setting up electronic folders to keep all your course materials organized, one folder for each assignment. Do not delete the prewriting and drafts for an assignment just because you have turned in the final draft! You will need to keep all drafts in case they are needed for your Final Portfolio, which is the most heavily-weighted assignment in our class.


Your papers will be submitted and scored through Turnitin, the plagiarism-prevention software used by North Idaho College. Turnitin is used to detect plagiarized passages, and if any are found, I will contact you to make you aware of your options.


Topic Considerations

Essay topics are up to the student, but are subject to teacher approval and the following requirements:


o     Papers written for other classes--or this class taken previously--will not be accepted.


o      Essays based on faith or the supernatural do not rely on the rhetorical techniques taught in this class and so will not be accepted for credit. This requirement does not necessarily disallow essays on religion, for example, as long as the essay is not based on faith. (Even religion classes expect writers to analyze rather than preach a personal view of faith.)


o      I may discourage you from writing on certain topics if they are not suitable and would not lead to your successful completion of the assignment. For example, over the last 20 years, I have read thousands of unsatisfactory papers on abortion, legalization of marijuana, divorce, and lowering the drinking age. These topics seem to generate biased, poorly-researched essays relying on loaded language rather than rhetorical strategies. There are millions of other topics on which you can write creatively and authentically, so please direct your attention to them instead.

o      Research argument topics are the bailiwick of ENG 102 and assessing them requires the evaluation of skills not taught in this class. Off-topic or off-assignment papers will not be accepted. Please check with me before you write your essay if you have any doubt. 

Response to and Revision of Papers

Writing for an audience is a key part of writing strategy. Each paper for our class will involve some sort of peer review, but rest assured that this is handled in such a way that crying, weeping, and hurt feelings are very rare. In fact, students often feel that peer review – at least the way we will do it here – is a fun, essential part of a writing class. I will not allow another student to be mean to you, and I certainly won’t be mean to you myself, at least in regards to your writing! Writing classes typically require peer review, and we can use some very creative ways of simulating it here in our online classroom. After receiving feedback from classmates, you will revise your paper and submit a final draft with all pre-writing to me. Submitting an incomplete draft to these peer review opportunities does not allow you to take advantage of discussion, feedback points, and revision, so please aim to have a near-final draft for peer feedback.  


Feedback from well-meaning parents, friends, and roommates is not a substitute for class peer review because they do not know what we are working with. Mechanics alone do not improve a paper – good writing, as we will discuss, includes numerous other characteristics. Neither I nor other students will “edit” or “correct” your paper (please remove these words from your vocabulary!) because your work should reflect your own understanding of all writing concepts and not that of your parent, roommate, spouse, or friend (or mother) who is an English major. This obviously has strong connections to academic integrity, which the college and I take very seriously. You will not be allowed to submit a paper that has been “cleaned up” by your parent, girlfriend or boyfriend, or former teacher. It may make them feel important, but if you learn nothing from it, it’s of no use to you. I encourage you to talk to others about your writing, but maintain ownership of your work at all times.


You will be asked to respond to my feedback on most papers, and usually a specific form will be provided for you to do so. To encourage students to develop their own revision skills, a revision will be accepted for a grade only when I have requested it and on the date I determine. Your final portfolio in ENG 101 will include your best work (we will discuss this in more detail later in the semester) and will attain a form of publication. Clearly, it is in your best interest to present your best work there.

Attendance and Participation

How do we establish attendance in an online class? Simple – you will be provided with opportunities to respond to Discussion Threads two or three times a week. Your required initial response to the thread will tell me that you are breathing, and at least two follow-up responses to classmates in each Discussion Thread will tell me that you are involved and engaged in the process. These informal writing opportunities actually are extremely helpful in thinking ahead to the Short Papers and Major Papers on which you will be scored. Since participation is a significant part of your grade, please check in frequently, if only to catch up on reading your classmates’ posts. If you decide that the online world is not for you, it is your responsibility to officially withdraw to avoid receiving an “F.”


Please keep in mind that 16 students were wait-listed for this course and did not get to take it because it filled up before they could enroll. I hope that out of respect for those who wanted to take this course and couldn’t, you will maximize your opportunity to take ENG 101.


Dual Enrollment: Students who attend high school and NIC at the same time must meet the same requirements as all other NIC students. School-sponsored absences connected to the high school are the same as for NIC.


Use of Email

Last semester, I received over 700 student emails, 99% of which could have been answered by reading the course materials. If you read the Syllabus and class materials, keep up with announcements on Blackboard, read all posts, participate in peer reviews, and STILL have a question, then by all means, ask it. I will provide a weekly Questions and Concerns thread for you to post a question publicly, which may help others who have the same question. If your question is one you do not feel comfortable asking publicly, then go ahead and email me. I will try to be polite in responding to your email, but I may refer you to the Syllabus or course materials which you should have read.


Please do not ask me to give you information regarding your grade over email. Email is not a secure enough method of communicating confidential information such as grades. I have never worked in an academic setting that allowed grades to be communicated in that way. I provide scores and feedback on your papers. You will have plenty of information about your grade as the class progresses.


Also, do not submit your papers by email. If your paper is not submitted in the Blackboard Dropbox for that assignment, you will not earn credit for it.  


Additional Items

Division Policies

NIC English/Modern Languages Division


The English/Modern Languages Division has agreed upon a recommendation that students not miss more than the equivalent of two weeks in a single course, which means six absences in a three-day-per-week class, four absences in two-day-per-week class, two absences in a one-evening-per-week class, or two weeks of online participation.

Plagiarism Policy
NIC's English Department believes strongly in the ability of its students to:
1. write works in which they use their own ideas and words
2. correctly borrow the words and ideas of others

The department's definition of plagiarism comes from the Council of Writing Programs Administrators': In an instructional setting, plagiarism occurs when a writer deliberately uses someone else's language, ideas, or other original (no common-knowledge) material without acknowledging its source.

Behaviors considered plagiarism would include:
1. Using someone else's exact words without using direct quotes.
2. Paraphrasing or summarizing someone's words or ideas without giving credit to the source's author.
3. Submitting another's work as the student's own. This includes a purchased paper, a borrowed paper, or portions of another person's work. NIC now subscribes to a plagiarism-prevention service, called, which is integrated with our Blackboard course software. When you turn in your assignments to this site, whether during the drafting process or on a final due date, the software compares your work to many resources on the World Wide Web, coming up with an "authenticity" report. You will receive more information on this process in class. To avoid plagiarism, cite sources carefully.
Behavior not considered plagiarism but of concern is sloppy documentation of words and ideas borrowed from another source and/or submitting an old paper as new work without the instructor's permission.

In addition to helping students with their current individual writing needs, the Writing Center upholds a student-centered environment that stresses the relationship between strong written and oral communication skills and success both in and beyond college. This environment not only helps students become more critical readers and more competent writers, but also promotes their success across the curriculum and encourages life-long learning.
Click on the link below for additional information.

The Writing Center: The Writing Center is located in Lee Hall Annex (behind Lee/Kildow Hall). It is open to all students across campus for help with their writing. They are open from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Fridays. 

Institutional Policies

Student Responsibilities

As students undertake to fulfill the obligations and duties outlined in this document, the college community of which they are a part undertakes to respect the basic freedoms of students. In recognition of students’ rights and dignity as members of the college, North Idaho College is committed to the principles found in the NIC Student Handbook.

Center for Educational Access/Disability Support Services

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504/508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, North Idaho College provides accommodations to eligible students who experience barriers in the educational setting due to learning, emotional / mental, physical, visual, or hearing disabilities.  Instructors will provide accommodations to students only after having received a Letter of Accommodation from the Center for Educational Access. 

If a student would like to request accommodations, he or she must contact the Center for Educational Access so that a Letter of Accommodation may be sent to the instructor.  Students requesting accommodations must contact the Center for Educational Access at the beginning of each semester.


By registering at North Idaho College, you agree to provide payment by the due dates. You also understand that collection costs and legal fees will be added if the services of a collection agency are utilized.

If you are registered for a class and do not attend, you will still be liable for the tuition unless you drop the class.


Last day for students to withdraw from semester-length classes:

Instructor-Initiated Withdrawal: Instructors have the right to withdraw students for academic reasons up until the same date; in doing so, instructors must notify students through NIC e-mail within 48 hours of submitting documentation to the Registrar's office, and students have the right to appeal the instructor's decision. For more information, see the NIC Procedure:

Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy: All withdrawals, whether for individual classes, total withdrawal from school, or instructor-initiated are not considered to be satisfactory progress for financial aid.  See the Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy:

Additional withdrawal information:


An incomplete is assigned only if the student has been in attendance and has done satisfactory work to within three weeks of the end of the semester (or proportional length of time for a course of less than a semester in length).  Incompletes are issued only in cases of extenuating circumstances, such as severe illness or injury.  Incompletes are not issued in cases in which the student is simply unable to complete his/her work within the specified semester or session.  If a final grade of "I" is recorded, the instructor will indicate in writing to the Registrar what the student must do to make up the deficiency.  The instructor will indicate in the written statement what permanent grade should be entered if the Incomplete is not removed by the deadline.

All incomplete grades must be removed within six weeks after the first class day of the following term, excluding the summer session.  If the Incomplete is not removed by that date, the grade reverts to the grade indicated by the instructor's written statement authorizing the incomplete.

Discrimination and Harassment

North Idaho College has a zero tolerance policy for any acts of discrimination or harassment of any kind.  For more information, please see the NIC Student Handbook, Code of Conduct Article III and Article VIII. Compliance efforts with respect to these laws and regulations are the responsibility of each member of the campus community and are under the direction of the Dean of Students Office for Student Issues (2nd floor, Edminster Student Union Building, (208) 676-7156) and the Human Resources Office (Sherman Administration Building, (208) 769-3304) for employee issues.