Common Reflective Essay

Assignment Background
In this course, assignments were designed to give you opportunities to transfer written communications from one genre to another. This is something you will be asked to do in your academic and professional lives: your ability to respond effectively in various rhetorical situations is why composition is such an important part of any degree or program.
This paper will focus on all student learning outcomes (SLOs) but especially SLO 7: “Explain how your reading and composing practices have developed, will continue to develop, and will transfer to new situations.” Therefore, this is a paper about you: your progress in writing and reading, your work, your ability to transfer these skills.

Assignment Description
You should either choose an essay or a letter as a genre of this assignment. With each, keep in mind the concepts about writing we’ve covered already (paragraph focus, development of ideas, etc.) and the tone for both should be formal. If you choose a letter, for example, this is not one to a friend. You are writing for someone who does not know you or these concepts. “I” should be used in this paper, yet you also shouldn’t assume your audience knows all your work. You still should approach this as if you are writing for someone who does not know what you’ve learned and who was not in our class, someone completely unfamiliar with what we’ve done this quarter.

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You should also become familiar with the following important terms we’ve discussed so far:
a. Audience
b. Genre
c. Rhetorical situation
d. Rhetorical appeals
e. Reflection
f. Purpose
g. Exigence
h. Subject matter knowledge
i. Transfer of writing knowledge
j. Composing
k. Critical reading

Specific Essay Requirements
To complete this assignment, you should do the following:
1. Write an introduction that both eases your reader into this conversation AND shares with your reader what most influenced you as a reader and writer before taking this course. Think about different classes you’ve taken (in college and elsewhere). Think about your writing and reading outside of academics.
2. Next, create several topic sentences to plan the body of your writing. You will be writing body paragraphs dedicated to many of the terms (terms a-k on page 1) with the aim of teaching your reader what you now understand about each of these items. There should be one term and discussion per paragraph in which you do the following:

a. Explain how you now understand that term and its significance in a way that you did not before.
b. Explain how your understanding of this concept will continue to develop as you transfer it to new contexts.

Refer to Nicotra’s text if you are confused about any of the terms.

3. Next, read Dirk’s “Navigating Genres,” which can be found in our Canvas shell. You will need to use evidence from this essay, carefully cited in MLA form, in the body paragraphs of your reflection, in the conclusion, or in both. Remember that when we use evidence, we are looking for those best moments: you are looking to gain credibility by bringing in an outside source, but you are also expected to use the very best of what you have. So how can Dirk’s essay deepen your own thoughts about the concepts you are writing about? Think about what he is saying about the rhetorical situation, about transfer of knowledge, about genre?
4. If you need or want to use Nicotra as extra evidence, please feel free to do so. If you do, she would be correctly cited in text and appear in the works cited.
5. Other than Nictora and the Dirk essay, NO other outside research should be used.
6. Your next step is to draft a conclusion. All communications have an end, just like a beginning, and the conclusion is your moment of power. So to end, how can you get to the so what of your message? What matters about all of this? Why should your reader care?
7. Draft a Works Cited. Make careful note of punctuation: book titles are italicized, and essay titles are in “ .”
8. Revise globally.
9. Revise locally.
10. I encourage you to help one another. Important note: this is the equivalent of a final exam, and because of this, I will not be able to help you. This is your opportunity to show me all that you’ve learned about writing and how writers work collaboratively to create meaning. Use your peers; rely on one another to revise.

Grading
• Refer to the grading rubric to understand the value of this assignment and how it will be assessed. It is a similar rubric to what we’ve been usibcqng all term with the addition of SLO7.

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