GCCAZ Personal Reflection Rep

Overview: This quick write will be a letter with advice to future students for how to be successful in this course. The letter should be multi-paragraph and reflect on your learning and writing process throughout the semester. This is designed to help you reflect on your work as a student to identify areas of success and areas for improvement. This should be a very personal piece of writing: it is more about you and what you learned. It should highlight any problems you faced, how you feel you improved, and factors that went into the choices you made in your essays. You should provide specific examples of your experiences, learning, and process as part of this letter.

Writing this letter will help you pull together what you’ve learned, so it isn’t just a jumble of unrelated techniques or facts. You know more than you think you do, and a little bit of critical thinking about it all will help you realize how much you do know. This letter of your reflections should draw on what we have covered in class, but it should be centered primarily on how you have seen yourself change (or not change) throughout the semester. While your essay should discuss specific skills, concepts, and changes in thinking related to your own writing and writing process, you need not limit yourself to a consideration of your growth as a writer.

Think About:

  • Reviewing the course description and competencies for English 101:

Official Course Description:

Emphasis on rhetoric and composition with a focus on expository writing and understanding writing as a process. Establishing effective college-level writing strategies through four or more writing projects comprising at least 3,000 words in total.

Course Competencies:

    1. Analyze specific rhetorical contexts, including circumstance, purpose, topic, audience, and writer, as well as the writing`s ethical, political, and cultural implications.
    2. Organize writing to support a central idea through unity, coherence, and logical development appropriate to a specific writing context.
    3. Use appropriate conventions in writing, including consistent voice, tone, diction, grammar, and mechanics.
    4. Summarize, paraphrase and quote from sources to maintain academic integrity and to develop and support one`s own ideas.
    5. Use feedback obtained from peer review, instructor comments and/or other resources to revise writing.
    6. Assess one`s own writing strengths and identify strategies for improvement through instructor conference, portfolio review, written evaluation, and/or other methods.
    7. Generate, format, and edit writing using appropriate technologies.

How you have met these goals? Which competencies do you think you excelled in and which could use improvement? Feel free to review the Module and Unit overview to help you as well.

      • What was your writing like when you began the course?
      • Is it better now?
      • Are you more confident?
      • Do you know where to look stuff up?
      • What do you consider the single most important insight this course has given you – the idea that had the strongest impact, or will stay with you for a long time?
      • Do you have any ideas for improving this course?
      • Which assignments did you enjoy the most and why?
      • Which assignments did you struggle with the most and why?
      • What would you do differently if you could take this course over again?
      • Be specific. What specific strategies, techniques or skills have you learned? It never hurts to be specific.

Essay Organization:

Given the number of possible items you could address, it’s important to have a clear controlling purpose (AKA a THESIS) in your letter so that your writing does not sound like a long list of points in paragraph form.

You can and should discuss things like:

      • important revisions you made in the process of writing
      • decisions you made in building your essay, and rationale for these decisions
      • challenges with specific parts of the assignments
      • what you learned from the authors you read
      • how you look at writing differently than when the semester began
      • how your writing has changed
      • how your writing process has changed

You should avoid comments like:

      • “I learned a lot this semester.”
      • “My teacher was so great” or “My teacher was horrible because…”
      • “Thank heavens this class is over”
      • “I hope you were impressed with my essays. I worked so hard on them.”
      • “Clearly, I am ready for another English Course

Overall Requirements:

  • Introduction with thesis statement
  • 2-4 Body Paragraphs
  • Conclusion
  • 500 word Minimum

Criteria for grading will be: How well organized is your letter? Does it flow smoothly and logically from one point to the next? Do you back up your points with specific examples? Do you identify your sources (no sources are required, but if you use one you must cite it)? Do you understand the concepts I’m asking about? How thoughtful is your essay?

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