HELP 341W: Writing Expansion 1 

Fall Term 1, 2013                                              TEACHER: Hami 
Monday-Thursday, 8:00 am-9:00 am     EMAIL: ask me

OFFICE HOURS (MC13-5): Wednesday, 9:05am-11:00am and 1:35pm-3:00pm or by appointment.


This course is designed to build your skills in writing and revising for an academic audience. You will learn all the steps of the writing process – brainstorming and outlining, drafting, revising, and peer/self editing – as well as the conventions of standard academic-paper formatting. By the end of the course, you will be able to write the standard five-paragraph essay.


Students will be able to:

  1. Write well-developed and well-organized multi-paragraph essays with clear and appropriate thesis statements. This will be assessed and evaluated by teacher generated rubric.
  2. Write in a variety of rhetorical modes, e.g. narrative, cause and effect, comparison-contrast, and argumentative. This will be assessed and evaluated by teacher generated rubric and assignments.
  3. Demonstrate understanding of the concept of plagiarism by citing sources. This will be assessed and evaluated through assignments and in-class exercises.
  4. Summarize material from authentic texts. This will be evaluated through assignments and in-class exercises. There will also be discussions in class. Therefore, expect to speak up in class, as this will be a part of your participation grade.
  5. Identify and maintain focus on the audience of the writing. This will be assessed and evaluated by teacher generated rubric.


  • Required Text: Writing Academic English (Oshima & Hogue), 2006 .Chapters 1, 2, 4, 7
  • Supplementary Materials: Additional handouts distributed by the instructor


Students will be graded in the following ways:

  • Attendance/Being on time                                                     5%
  • In-class participation                                                             10%
  • Peer-editing                                                                             15%
  • Homework                                                                              20%
  • Free writing and learning journal                             10%
  • Writing assignments (4 papers in total)                            40% (10%/paper)

*Note: items in bold, please see different handouts for detailed explanation.

Attendance/Being on time (5%)
This is the first class of the day and it starts at 8:00 am. Please plan ahead of time, so that you do not miss your bus or get caught in traffic. Being present in class on time is your responsibility, and it is for your own benefit.

In-class participation (10%)
Cell phone or other electronic devices are not allowed to use during the session, but it is fine to use an electronic dictionary. You must be present in our class meetings and actively participate in class discussion.

Active participation means that you should not only be prepared for class, but also provide your ideas or ask questions anyway possible. When your classmates are talking, you should listen to show that you respect them, and vise versa. Your teacher will call on you sometimes in class to answer questions. You will get credit by trying and you don’t have to worry about making mistakes. We are here to learn, so this is the time and place for your make mistakes. Practice makes perfect.

You are also encouraged to ask questions whenever in or outside of class.
(Please also note that HELP has a very strict rule about attendance. You can find this at the end of this syllabus.)

Peer-editing (15%)
You will be required to look at your classmates’ writing pieces, so that you can help him/her to edit their work. More details will be provided.

Homework (20%)
Doing homework is a basic way to improve and practice English outside of class. It is for your own reward, so you should take it seriously. If you want to be successful in learning, you have to take the initiative. How much effort you put in your study will reflect on your writings and performances in class.

The format of homework will be writing to prepare for your writing pieces, and other handouts from the instructor. Late submissions or absent work will take out points from your total grades.
You will be graded based on the completion of your homework, not the accuracy. If you submit it late, you will lose 1/2 point. If you do not submit it at all, you will lose 1 point.

Free writing and learning journal (10%)
You will be keeping your own learning journal everyday. At the beginning of each class, there will also be time for free writing. Please make sure to bring a notebook for this writing class. More details will be provided.

Writing assignments (10% per paper=40%)
You will be required to write four papers this term. There will be specific due dates for each paper, so plan ahead of time. More details will be provided.

HELP Attendance Policy
HELP has set a policy that with 3 Late =1 absence, 4 absence= a warning, and 6 absence= academic probation and will not receive week credit for your graduation certificate.  I will start taking attendance once the class starts. Therefore, plan your time well, and do not be late!

English-Only Policy
In order to ensure that students make the best use of their time at HELP, all students must speak, write, listen to, and read ONLY in English at school and on school activities.

Enjoy learning :)
Everything that we do in class is to help you learn. Sometimes you may not realize how much you are learning, but we can work hard together. As I am teaching you, I am also learning a lot from all of you and I always enjoy teaching and learning. I hope you can feel the same way and enjoy your time at HELP!


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