Writing Assignments

Major Writing Assignments

Sequence 1: Source-based Essay (15%)

A rhetorical analysis of the initial research that the student finds on their subject. A source-based article, in which the student goes beyond summarizing to analyze/make connections between the concepts of genre, audience and rhetorical situation, and begin to develop a theory of writing. Students summarize the sources, make connections between them, and conduct genre analyses.

Key terms: Genre, Audience, Rhetorical Situation, Reflection

Sequence 2: Inquiry-based Essay (30%)

This essay both expands the research begun in the first essay, presents a research questions, and moves to answer that question. This essay includes:

  • research plan
  • identification of a local agency
  • description of a local agency
  • interviews with personnel or other members of the agency
  • observation of the agencies operations
  • survey of the the documents that circulate in the agency, including a discussion of discourse community
  • research from popular and scholarly sources on this kind of agency
  • proposal for two documents based on agency’s exigence

Key terms: Exigence, Critical Analysis, Discourse Community, and Knowledge

Sequence 3: Composition in Two Genres (30%)

Create documents in two different genres to communicate to a targeted audience about the research topic explored in the second major assignment; includes rhetorical analysis of the documents using the terms audience, purpose, stance, rhetorical situation, genre, exigence, and discourse community, context, and circulation.

Key terms: Context, Composing, and Circulation

Sequence 4: Reflection and Portfolios (25%)

The reflection asks students to identify key terms they believe are most important to their writing practices and to theorize about the choice. In other words, it asks students to create their theory of writing, using the idea of their own “made knowledge” about writing and the idea of reflection as both theory and practice.

Key terms: Knowledge and Reflection