Below please find our class syllabus, distributed on February 1, 2016.  Please note that the information recorded below is subject to change; our OpenLab site contains the most accurate, up-to-date information regarding coursework, assignments, etc.

New York City College of Technology, Spring 2016:  English 1121, Section D492

Monday/Wednesday, 4:00-5:15 PM  – Namm 523A

OpenLab site:

Contact Information

Kara Hughes –

Office hours:  Wednesdays, 2:45-3:45 PM (Namm 529) and by appointment


In ENG1121, we will explore four writing tasks – summary, critical reading/critique, synthesis, and research.  Our semester will be divided into six units of focused study:

  • unit 1: annotation, MLA citation, best practices
  • unit 2: academic essays
  • unit 3: literary fiction
  • unit 4: periodical publications
  • unit 5: research project
  • unit 6: final portfolio

Units 2 through 4 will require preparation of short response papers that reflect an understanding of one or more of our writing tasks.  Unit 5 will culminate in a research paper that links something from the past with something from the present, and unit 6 will result in the creation of a final portfolio containing revisions and evidence of self-reflection.

Textbook and Readings

Behrens, Laurence M., and Leonard J. Rose. Writing and Reading Across the Curriculum, 13th edition. Upper Saddle River: Pearson, 2000. Print.

Please always bring your textbook, readings, and handouts with you to class, as we will refer to them throughout the semester.  You may also choose to bring a dictionary to assist you with any in-class writing exercises.  You must devise a system for filing the paperwork provided and created during our semester; do not discard anything until after you have received your final grade.  Further, back-up all of your own work on a thumbdrive, Dropbox, Google docs, etc.

Requirements and Classroom Rules

All students will be required to join and participate in our OpenLab community.  As our syllabus and related assignments may shift during the course of the semester, OpenLab will reflect the most accurate and up-to-date information regarding homework, coursework, etc.

In addition to adhering to the rules delineated in this syllabus, you are asked to conduct yourself diplomatically and respectfully.  Further, during class hours you are to refrain from using any electronic devices.  If you use your cell phone or other device during class, you will be asked to leave and will be counted absent.


For this section, three late marks equate to one missed class (being late is arriving more than five minutes after the start of class).  Per University policy, missing more than four total classes can be grounds for failure.  Whenever possible, please notify me of your absence before the start of class.  If you must miss a class, the onus is on you to determine what work you missed by checking our OpenLab site.


No late work will be accepted.  If circumstances prevent you from being in class on the day an assignment is due, please contact or speak with me before the assignment is due so that we can strategize together.  Below please find a breakdown of how various components of our coursework will contribute to your final grade:

  • unit 1 homework: 5%
  • response papers: 50%
  • unit 5 research paper: 15%
  • unit 6 portfolio: 10%
  • classroom participation: 10%
  • final exam: 10%

Submission Guidelines

All work is to be typed and printed out before class unless otherwise noted; please use 12-point type, double spacing, 1-inch margins all around, no extra spacing between paragraphs, and Arial, Calibri, or Times New Roman font.  Please title your work; the title should be in 12-point font and centered, with no quotation marks, bolding, italics or underlining.  No cover page is necessary; instead, create a heading in the upper left-hand corner of your first page:  using single-spacing, please list your name, ENG1121, D492, the name of the assignment, and the due date.  Use of page numbers should begin on the second page.  After an initial warning is given in writing, failure to adhere to these guidelines will result in a grade penalty.

MLA Citation and Plagiarism

We will be using MLA (Modern Language Association) style to cite sources.

Visit the Purdue OWL website for additional information about MLA:

According to the University’s Academic Integrity code, “[p]lagiarism is the presenting of someone else’s ideas without proper credit or attribution.”  Plagiarism may be punished not only by failure in English 1121, but by suspension or dismissal from the University as well.  To allow someone else to pass off your written work as their own is another form of the same practice and may receive the same punishment.  Because the charge of plagiarism is so serious, it is important that you learn how to work with the ideas and words of other people responsibly.  If, at any stage, you are unsure about how to properly acknowledge a source, see me.

You can find the full version City Tech’s Academic Integrity policy at:

The below information is subject to change; our OpenLab site will contain the most accurate, up-to-date information regarding coursework, assignments, etc.

Date of Class Homework (due the following class period unless otherwise noted)
Feb 1 (M) ·      Write 2-3 (legible) questions on index card provided

·      Buy our textbook (you’ll need it in advance of Feb 10)

·      Sign up for OpenLab

Feb 3 (W) ·      Read “MLA In-Text Citations” (handout)

·      Read “Quicktips: MLA documentation style” (handout)

·      Review “Proofreader’s Marks” (handout)

·      Complete quote integration exercise (handout)

Feb 8 (M) ·      Complete unit 1 homework
Feb 10 (W) ·      Read pages 3-25 (re: summaries)

·      Read “Society is in the Mind” (handout)

·      Complete response paper 1 (due Feb 17)

No class

Feb 15 (M)

(No classes school-wide)
Feb 17 (W) ·      Find and summarize one link between something you learned from Cooley and something you have observed or believe to be true (your summary can be handwritten)

·      Read pages 51-77 (re: critical reading)

Feb 22 (M) ·      Read “An ‘American’ Publishes a Magazine” (handout), annotating to reflect your critical reading reactions
Feb 24 (W) ·      Complete response paper 2
Feb 29 (M) ·      Read pages 96-129 (re: explanatory synthesis)

·      As you read, consider what sources/voices we could synthesize with “An ‘American’ Publishes a Magazine”

Mar 3 (W) ·      Read “A Chilean Writer’s Fictions Might Include His Own Colorful Past” (handout)

·      Read “Stray Questions for:  Roberto Bolaño?!” (handout)

Mar 7 (M) ·      Read “Beach” (handout)

·      Complete response paper 3

Date of Class Homework (due the following class period unless otherwise noted)
Mar 9 (W) ·      Read pages 130-173 (re: argument synthesis)

·      Read “The Other Place” (handout)

Mar 14 (M) ·      Read the New Yorker’s interview with Mary Gaitskill about “The Other Place” (handout)
Mar 16 (W) ·      Complete response paper 4
Mar 21 (M) ·      Read “On Seeing the 100% Perfect Girl One Beautiful April Morning” (handout)

·      Read “Sleeping Beauty and the Airplane (handout)

·      Begin working on response paper 5 (due Mar 30)

No class

Mar 23 (W)

(No Wednesday classes; today follows a Friday schedule)

Note!  The Literary Arts Festival will be held on Thursday, March 24

Mar 28 (M) ·      Complete response paper 5
Mar 30 (W) ·      Read pages 496-498 (“A Psychology of a Rumor”)

·      Read pages 512-516 (“How to Fight a Rumor”)

Apr 4 (M) ·      Complete response paper 6
Apr 6 (W) ·      Watch “Do What You Love” speech (see page 461 for details)

·      Read pages 463-465 (“Do What You Love #@&** That!”)

Apr 11 (M) ·      Read pages 466-467 (“Dear Grads:  Don’t Do What You Love”)

·      Read pages 468-472 (“In the Name of Love”)

Apr 13 (W) ·      Complete response paper 7
Apr 18 (M) ·      Think through your research paper (due May 9)

·      Come to class with questions about the assignment

Apr 20 (W) ·      Come to class with a preliminary topic and working bibliography

·      Note!  You may only get started writing after your topic has been approved by me (either during class or via OpenLab)

No class

Apr 25, Apr 27

(No classes school-wide; spring recess April 22-30)
Date of Class Homework (due the following class period unless otherwise noted)
May 2 (M) ·      Continue researching/writing

·      Bring all relevant work with you to class

May 4 (W) ·      Complete your research paper
May 9 (M) ·      Begin working on your final portfolio (due May 18)

·      Bring all relevant work with you to class

May 11 (W) ·      Continue working on your final portfolio
May 16 (M) ·      Complete your final portfolio
May 18 (W) ·      Read “Do You Really Remember Where You Were on 9/11?” (handout)

·      Read commentary on George Fisher and Barbara Tversky’s talk, “The Problem with Eyewitness Testimony” (handout)

May 23 (M) ·      Annotate, summarize, and critique the articles if you haven’t already done so

·      Bring the articles with you to class, and be prepared to synthesize them

·      Note!  You may also bring your textbook, which you are welcome to use as a reference during our in-class final exam

May 25 (W) ·      Congratulations; you’re all finished!


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