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Writing Skills II

Course Master Syllabus
Writing Skills II
Developmental Writing DEVW 0320

Updated: 1/16/15

Course Description
A review of grammar, sentence structure, punctuation, spelling, and words often confused. Introduction to writing paragraphs and essays. Emphasis on planning, writing, and revising of assignments. Individualized and group instruction in a classroom or workshop setting. Course Goals: To prepare students to write confidently and effectively in college-level credit courses and to pass the writing portion of the Texas Success Initiative (TSI). Prerequisites: TSI complete in DEVR 0300. Grade of C or better in DEVW 0310 (formerly 0403) OR placement by a Written Essay Score of 4 and objective score of 350-355.

Course Rationale
Students who have not passed the writing portion of the Texas Success Initiative (TSI) must enroll and participate in a developmental writing course until they satisfy the TSI writing requirement.

Learning Outcomes
After completing this course, the student should be able to:

  • engage in writing as a process;

  • identify audience and purpose as needed to determine tone, vocabulary, and content;

  • write essays with a clear lead-in, and develop a thesis statement, using an essay map when appropriate;

  • develop unified body paragraphs using sensory detail and specific examples, and use different strategies for organizing body paragraphs;

  • develop coherent essays by using transitional devices to guide the reader;

  • analyze and evaluate writing for effectiveness in presenting ideas and grammar and mechanics;

  • write simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex sentences;

  • access the library's resources and use an online database for research; and

  • develop proofreading strategies to be able to edit writing for the following errors: apostrophes in contractions, possessives, and misused apostrophes; articles and prepositions; awkward wording; capitalization; commas with items in a series, coordinating conjunctions, introductory clauses, phrases, and transitional devices, and unnecessary commas; twenty commonly confused words - a/an/and; accept/except; advice/advise; among/between; are/our; it's/its; knew/know/new/no; many/much; quiet/quit/quite; raise/rise; set/sit; than/then; their/there/they're; thorough/threw/through; though/thought; to/too/two; want/won't; were/we're/where; whose/who's; your/you're - parallelism; omitted words and letters; pronoun case, agreement, and reference; quotation marks; run-ons and sentence fragments; subject-verb agreement; verb tense consistency; and document design.

Departmental Web Page
Go to www.austincc.edu/writing for additional information on the developmental writing program and for online writing resources.

Attendance/Withdrawal Policy
Regular and punctual class and laboratory attendance is expected of all students. If attendance or compliance with other course policies is unsatisfactory, the instructor may withdraw students from the class.

Students are permitted to miss 4.5 hours of class/lab time. Students who exceed this time limit may be withdrawn by the instructor unless there are extenuating circumstances. If the time limit violation occurs after the withdrawal date, the student may not pass the course. This policy applies to all sessions. Students who are withdrawn for violating the attendance policy should visit with an ACC counselor or advisor to discuss their options.

Students who are TSI mandated are required by the state to participate in developmental education. However, students shall not be removed from college credit courses as long as they are still willing to participate in a developmental program at the level required by THECB regulations.

It is the responsibility of each student to ensure that his or her name is removed from the roll should he or she decide to withdraw from the class. The instructor does, however, reserve the right to drop a student should he or she feel it is necessary. If a student decides to withdraw, he or she should also verify that the withdrawal is submitted before the Final Withdrawal Date.  The student is also strongly encouraged to retain his or her copy of the withdrawal form.

Students who enroll for the third or subsequent time in a course taken since fall 2002 may be charged a higher tuition rate for that course.

Essay Requirements
Students must write and revise at least two academic essays that count for a minimum of 30% of the course grade. A third essay--the midterm--must be written in a supervised setting and count for at least 10% of the grade. A fourth essay--the Departmental Essay--will be written during the week prior to the end of the semester. Students will be given two hours and forty minutes to hand write a four-paragraph persuasive departmental essay on an assigned topic. This essay will be written in class under instructor supervision. Distance learning students will be the only students allowed to test in the testing center. Computers will not be allowed. During the final week of the semester students will be given 50 minutes to revise and edit their essay; their initial score will be averaged together with their revision and editing grade for the final essay grade. Students need to check their instructor's syllabus for specific deadlines. The Departmental Essay will count 30% of the course grade and will be graded using the Departmental Essay Grading Scale, which instructors will give to students at the beginning of the semester.

Lab Requirement
There is a mandatory lab requirement for this course, which will count at least 10% of the course grade. Students are required to complete a weekly one hour lab assignment for fourteen of the sixteen weeks. The lab is currently scheduled in two ways. The lab either meets immediately before or after class OR the lab will be To Be Announced (TBA). A TBA lab will allow students to meet the lab requirement as they find time in their schedules. Each instructor is responsible for providing students with a lab handout that outlines activities on a weekly basis and how the activities will be graded.

In-Progress (IP) Grades
An IP (In-Progress) grade may be used for students in developmental education courses. An IP may be awarded to students who remain in the class, are attending and are progressing but not achieving the standards for earning a C or better in the course. An IP is a final grade for the term and counts toward the student's term hour load but carries no grade points or credit toward graduation. An IP does not mean successful fulfillment of the objectives of the course or completion of remediation. Students who earn an IP and continue at ACC must re-register in the same course for the next term that they enroll unless TSI requirements are otherwise met, in which case the IP becomes the final grade.

An IP grade is not to be used as an alternative to an I or an F. TSI-mandated students who have excessive absences do not qualify for an IP.

Students may earn an IP in the same course two times. On the third attempt, the student is not eligible for an IP and instead must earn an A, B, C, D, or F.

Grade of Incomplete(I)
An instructor may award a grade of “I” (Incomplete) if a student was unable to complete all of the objectives for the passing grade in a course due to extenuating circumstances that must be documented.  An incomplete grade cannot be carried beyond the established date in the following semester. The completion date is determined by the instructor but may not be later than the final deadline for withdrawal in the subsequent semester.

To qualify for an incomplete in Developmental Writing, a student must have three-quarters of the course completed and permission from the instructor. To receive an incomplete, a student must make a written request to the instructor and then fill out and sign the appropriate school document by the deadline noted in the current course schedule.

Please note that incompletes are rare. They are to be used for extreme circumstances such as a student who is unable to complete the final exam because he or she was hospitalized.

Scholastic Dishonesty Policy
A student attending ACC assumes responsibility for conduct compatible with the mission of the college as an educational institution. Students have the responsibility to submit coursework that is the result of their own thought, research, or self-expression. Students must follow all instructions given by faculty or designated college representatives when taking examinations, placement assessments, tests, quizzes, and evaluations. Actions constituting scholastic dishonesty include, but are not limited to, plagiarism, cheating, fabrication, collusion, and falsifying documents.

Penalties for scholastic dishonesty will depend upon the nature of the violation and may range from lowering a grade on one assignment to an “F” in the course and/or expulsion from the college. See the Student Standards of Conduct and Disciplinary Process and other policies at www.austincc.edu/current/needtoknow.

All work submitted in this course should be a student's own work. When a student borrows ideas, wording, or organization from another source, that information must be referenced using the methods prescribed by the instructor. Plagiarism or collusion could cause a student to receive a failing grade for the course or to be withdrawn from the course. Each instructor will provide students with a penalty policy for scholastic dishonesty.

is appropriating, buying, receiving as a gift, or obtaining by any means another's work and the unacknowledged submission or incorporation of it in one's own work. Collusion is unauthorized collaboration with another person or persons in preparing written work for fulfillment of course work.

Student Rights and Responsibilities
Students at the college have the rights accorded by the U.S. Constitution to freedom of speech, peaceful assembly, petition, and association. These rights carry with them the responsibility to accord the same rights to others in the college community and not to interfere with or disrupt the educational process. Opportunity for students to examine and question pertinent data and assumptions of a given discipline, guided by the evidence of scholarly research, is appropriate in a learning environment. This concept is accompanied by an equally demanding concept of responsibility on the part of the student. As willing partners in learning, students must comply with college rules and procedures.

Statement on Student Accessibility Services (SAS)
There is a Student Accessibility Services (SAS) office at each campus. If you have a disability, contact Accessibility Services at the campus that’s most convenient for you.

Students with disabilities who need classroom, academic, or other accommodations must request them through a Student Accessibility Services office. Students are encouraged to request accommodations when they register for courses or at least three weeks before the start of the semester.

Students who have received approval for accommodations must provide the instructor with the Notice of Approved Accommodations form before accommodations will be provided. Students are encouraged to submit the form to the instructor at the beginning of the semester because a reasonable amount of time may be needed to prepare and arrange for the accommodations.

Additional information about Student Accessibility Services is available at www.austincc.edu/support-and-services/services-for-students/student-accessibility-services-and-assistive-technology.

Safety Statement
Austin Community College is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for study and work. Students are expected to learn and comply with ACC environmental, health and safety procedures and agree to follow ACC safety policies. Additional information on these can be found at www.austincc.edu/ehs.

Because some health and safety circumstances are beyond ACC’s control, we ask that students become familiar with the Emergency Procedures poster and Campus Safety Plan map in each classroom. Additional information about emergency procedures and how to sign up for ACC Emergency Alerts to be notified in the event of a serious emergency can be found at www.austincc.edu/emergency.

Please note, students are expected to conduct themselves professionally with respect and courtesy to all. Anyone who thoughtlessly or intentionally jeopardizes the health or safety of another individual will be dismissed from the day’s activity, may be withdrawn from the class, and/or barred from attending future activities.

Students are expected to conduct themselves professionally with respect and courtesy to all. Anyone who thoughtlessly or intentionally jeopardizes the health or safety of another individual will be immediately dismissed from the day’s activity, may be withdrawn from the class, and/or barred from attending future activities.

Use of ACC E-mail
All College e-mail communication to students will be sent solely to the student's ACCmail account, with the expectation that such communications will be read in a timely fashion. ACC will send important information and will notify you of any college related emergencies using this account. Students should only expect to receive email communication from their instructor using this account. Likewise, students should use their ACCmail account when communicating with instructors and staff. Instructions for activating an ACCmailaccount can be found at www.austincc.edu/accmail/index.php.

Testing Center Policy
Under certain circumstances, an instructor may have students take an examination in a testing center. Students using the Academic Testing Center must govern themselves according to the Student Guide for Use of ACC Testing Centers and should read the entire guide before going to take the exam. To request an exam, one must have:

  • ACC Photo ID
  • Course Abbreviation (e.g., ENGL)
  • Course Number (e.g.,1301)
  • Course Synonym (e.g., 10123)
  • Course Section (e.g., 005)
  • Instructor's Name

Do NOT bring cell phones to the Testing Center. Having a cell phone in the testing room, regardless of whether it is on or off, will revoke a student's testing privileges for the remainder of the semester. ACC Testing Center policies can be found at www.austincc.edu/testctr.

Student and Instructional Services
ACC strives to provide exemplary support to its students and offers a broad variety of opportunities and services. Information on these services and support systems is available at www.austincc.edu/s4.

Links to many student services and other information can be found at www.austincc.edu/current.

ACC Learning Labs provide free tutoring services to all ACC students currently enrolled in the course to be tutored. The tutor schedule for each Learning Lab may be found at www.austincc.edu/tutor/students/tutoring.php.

Instructor Syllabus
In addition to the information in this Course Master Syllabus, each instructor will provide students with written statements on the following:

  • Instructor name, course name & number, section number and synonym, and course time and location.
  • Contact information: office hours, office location and number, phone number and e-mail address, and a statement about how to arrange conference/appointment.
  • Any additional course learning outcomes.
  • Required texts/materials.
  • Grading system.
  • Student discipline policy.
  • Class outline/calendar with test and due dates as well as other class activities.
  • Lab handout outlining lab assignments.
  • Course outline/calendar stating test and assignment due dates and activities.

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