Writing 20 - Cora Agatucci
Basic Writing I

Fall 2000

Instuctor Cora Agatucci
Deschutes 14
Office Phone & Voicemail:
(541) 383-7522
Office Hours:
TBA & by
appointment (see my
current schedule)
Mailbox: Deschutes 12, in
Humanities Dept. Office
Electronic mail:
or via First Class,
address to: Cora Agatucci

Required Textbook & Materials

Additional Resources:

Course Grading

10% - Preparation/Participation Credits (abbreviated PC) - evaluated Credit/No Credit
10% - Writers Profiles (abbreviated WP) - evaluated Credit/No Credit
40% - 3 Paragraphs & 1 Essay (@ 10%) - letter graded
10% - Quizzes - letter graded
30% - Portfolio (20%: 2 revised "best" writings; & 10%: Cover Letter) - letter graded

See Wr 20Course Plan for a week-by-week schedule of course assignments & activities,
which will be assigned and discussed in more detail in class.

Course Description & Learning Objectives
(Course Competencies)

Writing 20 and Writing 40--Basic English I & II--will help students develop the college-preparatory writing skills needed to succeed in Writing 121, as well as in future college and professional writing tasks. Writing 20 will emphasize writing effective paragraphs and developing proficiency in the fundamentals of sentence structure, word choice, grammar, punctuation, and mechanics.
Nine key course Competencies, or learning objectives, for Writing 20 students have been established by the Humanities Dept. Composition Committee.  This course has been designed to help students meet those course Competencies, which are listed and discussed below.

Paragraph Writing Skills

Competency 1: Be able to produce stand-alone paragraphs with a topic sentence and supporting details.

Competency 2: Be able to maintain focus and coherence for stand-alone paragraphs of at least 200 words.

Competency 3: Be able to distinguish between general support and specific evidence and to apply the distinction to one’s writing.

Writing 20 will introduce effective paragraph and essay writing skills, emphasizing the principles of focus, organization, and development. Textbook assignments offer introductions, examples, techniques, and topic ideas to guide students in developing their own writing. Students will apply what they learn through frequent skill-building exercises and graded writing assignments.  Students will also learn to adapt and expand their paragraph skills to in-class timed writing and to composing short essays.  To help students become self-reflective writers and independent learners, a series of short informal Writer’s Profiles (WP) will accompany major graded writing assignments. Writers Profile assignments will prompt students to recognize their writing strengths and sentence style, to identify their writing weaknesses, and to develop plans for improving their writing skills.  At the end of the quarter, students will prepare a portfolio representing their best work, selected and revised from previous graded writing assignments; with a cover letter explaining their choices, reflecting on their learning experiences, and assessing their performance in meeting Writing 20 course competencies over the term.

Sentence Editing & Correction Skills

Competency 4: Be able to produce paragraphs containing a variety of sentence lengths and structures, including some complex sentences.

Competency 5: Be able to edit one’s own writing to avoid most major sentence errors.

Competency 6: Be able to edit one’s own writing to avoid capitalization, spelling and confused word errors.

Competency 7: Be able to edit one’s own writing for generally accurate use of commas, semi-colons, apostrophes, and pronouns.

Textbook assignments will review the fundamentals of sentence structure and style. Exercises, directed class discussion, and quizzes will build students' skills in identifying and correcting common errors in grammar, usage, punctuation, and mechanics. However, emphasis will placed on students' ability to apply what they have learned in their own writing, by editing to improve their sentence style and by correcting sentence errors. Writers Workshops with other students, the instructor's editing comments on student writing assignments, and Writer's Profiles will help Writing 20 students develop these competencies.

The Writing Process

Competency 8: Understand the principles of the writing process in its basic form: generating ideas, organizing ideas, drafting, revising and editing.

Textbook and course instruction will emphasize the value of an effective writing  process to producing a successful finished composition. Each major writing assignments will be approached as a step-by-step process, from generating and organizing ideas, to drafting, revising, editing, and proofreading. Process-oriented assignments and activities will include "pre-writing" preparation, preliminary drafts and Writers Workshops with other students, revision and editing, instructor feedback, Writers Profiles, and the Portfolio.

Writer's Workshops

Competency 9: Be able to assist other writers with accurate analysis of focus, coherence, and specific development, at the paragraph level.

Students will work cooperatively with other students to achieve common course goals for developing effective writing skills in Writing 20.  Writers Workshops, especially, will enable students to learn--with and from other students--how to communicate successfully with readers.  Such small group activities will build upon individual learning experiences from instructor's feedback and Writer's Profiles on successive writing assignments, to develop students' competency in offering specific suggestions to help others strengthen their writing. Exposure to other students' writing will also enlarge everyone's appreciation of the possibilities, as well as the challenges, of achieving one's writing purposes successfully with an audience.

Attendance & Late Work Policy

Attendance Policy: I expect students to come regularly to class prepared for the day's activities, to participate actively in in-class learning experiences, and to complete assignments promptly to that they will receive timely feedback from Cora and other students needed for development and improvement of students' writing skills. College students are responsible for course content and assignments whether or not they are present in class. In case of absence, students should consult the Wr 20Course Plan, and contact Cora as soon as possible to arrange to make up what they have missed when possible by arrangement with the instructor. Note that some in-class assignments and activities cannot be made up if they depend upon in-class participation, although a limited number of extra credit options will be offered to compensate (in part). Also read carefully the Late Policy on Graded Assignments (below).

Late Work Policy on Graded Assignments:  One (1) graded writing assignment will be accepted late with no penalty. Thereafter, late graded writing assignments will be penalized one letter grade.

The 2 required QUIZZES cannot be "made up" or taken late. A missed quiz receives an F.  However, Optional Quiz #3 may be taken at the Final to improve students' Quiz grades.

The Portfolio will not be accepted late.

If unforeseen problems
 emerge during the quarter that may seriously hurt
your progress or performance in this course,
please see Cora right away.
- or E-mail me now cagatucci@cocc.edu -
Together we can perhaps reach a solution or compromise
that will enable you to continue the course
and complete requirements successfully.

Need extra help with writing assignments? Visit COCC Links,
a hyperlinked list of Online COCC Resources for Student Writers & Researchers

Any WR 20 student with a documented disability
(physical, learning, psychological, vision, hearing)
who needs to arrange reasonable accommodations
must inform the College and Cora as soon as possible.
If you require any assistance related to a disability,
contact the Disability Services Office located in
Boyle Education Center – call (541) 383-7580,
or send e-mail to

I look forward to working with all of you this term! . . . Cora

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Student Writing
WR 20 Course Competencies & Benchmarks - Fall 2000:

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