English 101 : Freshman Composition


Fall 2004 Instructor: M. Jamal (jamalma@pgcc.edu)
MW: 1:30-2:45pm Office: M3074; Hrs.: MW 9--10am
Classroom: M3081 Phone: (301) 322-0114


Required Text: E. Dornan and R. Dees: Four in One, 3rd Edition, Pearson and Longman

Reference Text: Diana Hacker. Rules for Writers, 4th Ed.                                                                                                                                           

"Much of what a writer learns he learns simply by imitation," John Gardner (On Moral Fiction).

Simply put, English 101 is aimed at improving your writing skills. You can do so not through plain imitation alone, but through a conscious effort devoted towards analysis and interpretation. The reading selection that follows provides you with a handful of literary works of some appeal. It is expected that an exposure to them, as well as through discussions and regular written assignments, you will ultimately develop into a conscious and skillful writer.


Scheduled Reading/Work*

Week of:

August 30:

Introduction. Diagnostic Essay
Sept. 6: Labor Day: College Closed


Critical Thinking (Chapters 1 & 2) and The Persuasive Principle


Chapter #6: The Thesis Statement and a Formal Plan


Chapter #11. Description: Rendering Experience
Specific Details and Specific Language
  David Brooks: Love, Internet Style, 479
  John Steinbeck: Good Used Cars (Handout)
  Working on an Outline and a Rough Draft
Descriptive Essay Due: 9/27/04


Chapter #12: Narration: Connecting Events
  E.B.White: Once More to the Lake, 609
Langston Hughes: Salvation (Handout)
Student Essay  p.172
Narration Essay Due 10/04/04
October 4: Chapter #16. Process Analysis: Explaining Step by Step
Follow Strict Chronological Order
Group the Steps and Anticipate Difficulties
  Garry Trudeau: Anatomy of a Joke, 579
Ronni Lundy: Corn Bread With Character (Handout)
Kirby W. Stanat: How to Take a Job Interview? (Handout)
Outline for a Process Paper
Process Paper Due: 10/11/04




Chapter #14: Comparison [and Contrast]
Student Essay: Chick Movies and Guy Movies, (Handout)
T. Ebert and M. Zavarzadeh. Our American Diet Divides, 488
Suzanne Britt: That Lean and Hungry Look (Handout)


Comparison and Contrast Paper Continued
Comparison and Contrast Paper Due: 11/01/02

November 1:

Chapter #15. Cause and Effect: Exploring Reasons and Results
  Brent Staples: Black Men and Public Space, 570
Stephen King: Why We Crave Horror Movies, 518
  Jeff Z. Klein. Watch My Back, 521
Professional Development Day (10/26/04): No Class
(Cause and Effect Paper Due: 11/08/02)


Chapter #17: Classification and Division: Analyzing & Arranging  


Principle of Classification and a Consistent Approach
Student Essay, 251


Kenneth H. Cooper: How Fit Are You? (Handout)
Charlotte Latvala: Mother-In-Law (Handout)
William Lutz: Double Speak, 534
  Division and Classification Due: 11/22/04


 <<<November 24-28: Thanksgiving Vacation>>>


 Chapter #19. Argumentation: Convincing Others


Student Essay, 279
Michael Levin: The Case for Torture, 530


Jonathan Swift: A Modest Proposal, 591
Rachel Jones: What's Wrong With Black English? (Handout)
Bernard Sloan: Old Folks At Home (Handout)

December 06:



Final Exam Period. Final Paper Due by 12/14 

*Minor modifications/changes may be made to the syllabus during the semester


All out-of-class papers must be typed.


Regular attendance is required. Only in extreme situations, a student may be excused for missing class (usually, just once a semester). However, he/she will be assigned extra work to make up for the day’s activity. Repeated absence from class will result in loss of grade.


All assignments are due on the day they are to be handed in. No late papers will be accepted. Also, you must complete all assignments to pass the class.


Quizzes will cover all class materials from the readings, discussions, and handouts. They will be unannounced and given during class time. Sorry, no make-up quizzes!

Grades*: The following grade range will be used to evaluate your work:

A+ (97-100) B+ (87-89) C+ (77-79)  D+ (67-69)
A (93-96) B (83-87) C (73-76) D (63-66)
A- (90-92) B- (80-82) C- (70-72) D- (60-62)

*Final course grade will be A, B, C, D, or F, only (no + or - letter grades).

Semester Assignments:

Disruptive Behavior: PGCC Policy dictates that students do not engage in disruptive behavior. As such, any action that interferes with class activity and is considered inappropriate for a college classroom will not be tolerated.