English 109—Second Assignment: Concept Paper
Requirements: Three pages in standard MLA Format.
Font: 12-point Times New Roman or its equivalent (Arial, Verdana, Calibri).
Peer Review Date: October 3rd, 2008.
Due Date: October 10th, 2008.
Write an extended definition of a term or concept that interests you, and which you want to
study further. When you have a good understanding of the concept, explain it to your readers,
considering carefully what they already know about it and what your essay might add to their
Remember, your Concept Essay will go beyond mere dictionary definition to a clear, concise,
and functional understanding of the concept, based on explanation, illustration, comparison,
anecdote, and example.
-Select a topic.
Determining Rhetorical Stance
-Define your readers.
-Determine what they need to know and how best to present the material.
-What is your goal in relationship to your readers?
Invention and Pre-Writing
-Freewrite. Basics—Writing a Concept Paper:
-Become an expert on your topic. concept.
Planning and Organizing
-Determine your approach to your topic.
anecdotes, comparisons, etc.
-Create an outline of your essay.
Composing/Drafting you have said.
-Write the first draft.
-Re-read your essay, alone, and in company with others.
-Reconceive the essay.
Revising and Rewriting
-Make adjustments, rewriting parts of your essay where necessary.
-Read through your essay a sentence at a time.
-Make improvements where necessary, so that every sentence is readily understood.
-Read your work word-by-word, and punctuation mark by punctuation mark.
-Make any necessary adjustments.
-Hand in the final draft of your essay.
For a list of possible essay topics, consult Reading Critically, Writing Well, p. 284.
Possible Concept/Definition Topics
Art Self-fulfilling prophecy
Modern Art Bodhisattva
Dark Ages Doctrine
Middle Ages Faith
Rhythm and Blues
Classicism New Age
Fairy tale Orthodox
Transcendentalism Rites of passage
Pacifism Black holes
Republicans Brownian Motion
Psychology Ockham’s Law
Ego Quantum Physics
Id String Theory