English 1102 Syllabus
Section Q1 CRN #571 MWF 7:00-7:50 AM
Spalding High, Room TBD
Mr. Peter Higgins
Student Center # 240
Office Hours: By appointment
Prerequisite: In order to enroll in English 1102, students must have earned at least a “C” in
Description: English 1102 incorporates research methods into interpretive and evaluative
writing. You should expect to spend time in an academic library, such as Gordon’s.
Course Objectives: In order to successfully complete ENGL 1102, the student should fulfill
Students must further advance their reading, comprehension, and response skills, both written and
oral, in relation to nuanced and complex texts.
Critical Thinking Objectives
Students should develop or significantly improve their ability to
Synthesize, for example in the use of multiple texts as support for an original idea.
Reflect on argumentative and research writing processes and products.
Develop and respond to individualized critical questions.
Students should develop or improve their ability to recognize and apply complex writing
processes, including but not limited to the following:
Increased awareness of process fundamentals as stated in the process objectives section
of the ENGL 1101 Course Objectives.
Strategies and skills for academic research.
Strategies and skills for framing and developing an argument.
Strategies and skills for critical interpretation.
Students should develop or improve their ability to produce an organized, coherent, and
developed essay demonstrating a mastery of Standard Written English. Successful demonstration
of these skills includes the following:
Increased competency in rhetorical strategy as related to audience, tone, and purpose in a
variety of contexts.
Articulation and understanding of complex subtleties involving a thesis idea.
Demonstration of the ability to correctly apply modal competency in research and
Demonstration of advanced documentation skills, including but not limited to the
analysis, interpretation, and appropriate documentation of primary and secondary critical
Competency in grammatical and mechanical correctness.
Required Texts and Materials:
Literature and Ourselves, Fifth Edition
The Gordon College Reference Guide to Grammar and Usage
Dracula (Norton Critical Edition)
Pens or pencils; plenty of lined paper; an open mind; and a willingness to work
A good paperback dictionary and thesaurus
Ten components will determine your grade for this class. We will write five formal essays: three
out-of-class papers of about 750 words each; one longer research paper of about 1500 words; and
an in-class final exam essay. The three shorter essays count 10% each. The research paper
counts 25%. Five in-class writing responses to our supplemental text will count a total of 10%.
The final exam counts 15%. Quizzes (at least weekly) count 10%. An oral presentation on your
research paper will count 10%. Also, every student is required to have one face-to-face
conference with me, to discuss the progress of his or her research paper. Not showing up for your
conference will result in a letter-grade penalty on the research paper.
Essays will be evaluated according to the following criteria:
A. Knowledge of the subject and following the assignment
B. Development and awareness of audience
C. Organization (structure and coherence)
D. Grammar and punctuation (as recommended by the English Department, I will fail
essays with more than five major errors or excessive minor errors)
Remaining in my class after this first meeting (or, if you missed the first class, after reading this)
means that you understand the following policies and agree to abide by them.
1. As a general policy, I will run this class as though it were a Gordon College class. We keep
the Gordon College schedule, meet when Gordon College classes meet, and break when
Gordon College classes break. I cannot excuse absences or extend due dates just because
your high school’s schedule conflicts with Gordon College’s schedule. It is my
understanding that ACCEL students are aware of this policy prior to registering for this class;
if you were not told this, please duly note it now..
2. Attendance is mandatory. As recommended by Gordon College, I will take attendance each
day by circulating a sign-up sheet. If you arrive late, you risk missing the attendance sign-up.
It is your responsibility to make sure your name gets on the sign-up sheet. Telling me on
Monday that you were actually in class the previous Friday is NOT a valid alternative. If you
accumulate more than six unexcused absences, you fail the course. I retain the right to count
you “absent” if you simply sign the sheet and then leave. You must actually sign the sheet
AND stay for the class.
3. If you miss class because of illness or personal hardship (a death in the family, for example),
I WILL ask for proper documentation. The documentation MUST speak directly to your
inability to attend the classes you missed (a torn-off page from a doctor’s prescription pad,
for example, with her signature at the bottom IS NOT ACCEPTABLE
DOCUMENTATION). I reserve the right to check on excuses (usually I get the Dean’s
office to check for me).
4. There are no make-up lectures; make a friend on whom you can depend for notes and
information if you must miss class. I will not “repeat” the day’s class for you, either in my
office or via email (see #16 below for more about email). You may certainly ask me a
question about something that we went over in class, but asking me “what happened” in class
is NOT an appropriate question. Ask your classmates.
5. Chronic and habitual tardiness is unacceptable. It distracts me and the other students in the
class. I’m assuming that you signed up for this particular section because your personal
schedule allows you to meet it regularly and punctually. Class begins when the door closes.
Chronic and habitual tardiness will affect your grade at my discretion.
6. If you do happen to come in late, it is common academic courtesy to do your best NOT to
interrupt or distract the professor. This usually means taking the closest vacant seat and not
crossing in front of the professor (or the speaker) if you can help it. It is entirely
inappropriate to interrupt the professor to explain why you are late; on days that papers are
due, it is even more inappropriate to come in late, interrupt the professor to hand in your
paper and explain why you aren’t staying for class.
7. Papers are due at the beginning of class on the designated days; any papers handed in after
the door closes on that day will be counted late. Papers handed in by the next class period
will be penalized a letter grade. Papers handed in after that will automatically receive a grade
of F (which is still better than a zero!) All out-of-class work must be word-processed (or
typed if you are a technophobe).
8. In return, you may expect me to be punctual, also—I try to return all work within a
reasonable amount of time: quizzes by the next class period and the three shorter essays in
one week. The research paper, which is longer, will be returned by the last day of class.
However, unforeseen circumstances sometimes arise, and a one-week turnaround is not
always possible. I beg your patience.
9. I hand back graded work at the END of class. If you cannot stay for the whole class, please
do not ask me to hand it back earlier. You may pick up your essay at the END of the next
10. All papers must follow MLA format.
11. Quizzes will be given at the beginning of class. Once the quiz has begun, nobody will be
allowed in the room until the quiz is over. There are no make-up quizzes. A missed quiz is
a zero. Please do not show me notes from your doctor, employer, mother, pastor, or best
friend. Please do not show me fuzzy snapshots of the aliens who abducted you. Please do
not ask for a make-up quiz. Quizzes will be worth ten points each.
12. Laptop computers should NOT be up and running unless we are working on an essay. If you
want to play on your computer, feel free to do so somewhere else (out in the corridor or the
lobby, maybe). I will warn you only once before violations begin to affect your grade at my
13. Please turn off your cell phones and other electronic devices before class begins. In return, I
promise not to call you at your home or place of employment to ask if you are reading your
assignment! If you are experiencing a legitimate emergency requiring your cell phone or
beeper to be active, please talk to me beforehand. As with #12, I will warn you only once
before violations begin to affect your grade at my discretion.
14. Please take off your headphones upon entering class. If you want to listen to music, you
should do so out in the quad. I will warn you only once before violations begin to affect your
grade at my discretion.
15. I hope to have lively discussions about our reading material this semester, but talking during
my lectures is unacceptable. If you want to chat or gossip, please do so out in the hall or in
the lobby. I will warn you only once. Also, disagreement is healthy and part of any
discussion; ridicule is not. Please respect other students’ opinions and comments during
discussions even if you disagree with them. Nothing kills class chemistry more quickly than
a reluctance to speak out because of fear of ridicule. I will warn you about this only once
before asking you to leave class until you feel ready to respect the opinions of others. If you
miss a class (or classes) because you have not respected the opinions of others, you WILL be
16. I see email as a means of communication, not an educational tool. This is not a distance
learning class. If you miss class, it is not my responsibility to repeat the lecture via email
(again, it’s always a good idea to get to know another student in the class). If you opt out of a
Workshop Day, do not email me your essay later that evening. I will ignore it. For the out-
of-class papers, I require hard copies; I do not accept emailed essays.
17. Failure to complete any of the required assignments this semester will result in an F, no
matter how brilliantly you have performed on the other essays. You must complete all work
in order to pass this class. Also, you must pass the Final Exam with a grade of “C” or better
in order to pass the class.
18. Students should save copies of all graded work this semester—this includes quizzes.
19. My final exam is given during the Gordon College-mandated time slot. You must take the
final to pass the course (see #17). If another instructor decides to change the time and/or date
of her exam, resulting in a conflict, I am not responsible for setting up an alternate time for
my exam. Gordon College policy states that any student who misses the final MUST petition
the Dean for a make-up exam, which will be given at MY convenience.
20. Plagiarism: All student work must be solely that of the person submitting the work. Any
student giving or receiving unauthorized help will receive an F or a zero on that
assignment/test and will be referred to the Dean. When source materials are used in the
writing of papers, the student must document such use by clearly indicating material being
used as a summary, paraphrase, or quotation and by meeting all requirements for a
documented paper. Failure to observe these rules will result in an F for the course. Ignorance
of the definition, practice, and consequences of plagiarism is no defense.
21. Visitors—friends, family members, parole officers, and so on—who are not enrolled in this
class SHOULD NOT be sitting in on our classes. Even those visitors who are the epitome of
decorum and respect ultimately prove to be distractions. Please DO NOT invite your
friends/family to sit in on class with you.
22. All students must sign a sheet verifying that they have read the syllabus and agree to abide by
23. Our first quiz will cover the policies outlined in this syllabus.
Tentative Schedule for Major Essays (these dates are subject to change):
Essay #1: February 9
Essay #2: March 16
Essay #3: April 10
Essay #4: April 19 (Research Paper)
Final Exam: Monday, May 4 during class time
What I ask of you this semester seems reasonable enough to me: that you be on time, respect me
and your classmates, and try every day to become a better writer. If you meet these expectations
on a regular basis, we’ll have a great semester. If you do not meet these expectations regularly,
our experience together won’t be as happy, and this might not be the class for you.