Composition I

Composition I

Instructor: Eric Lauritzen


The following information is subject to change. Please contact me with questions about the course. 

Course Description

Composition I is, above all, a writing course. All of the assignments, readings, discussions, and other activities you will take part in are designed to better prepare you for the writing tasks ahead. Much of the writing that you will do in college involves participating in conversations—learning what others are saying about a topic and responding with your own contribution to a growing body of knowledge. The assignments in this course provide practice with the interrelated skills involved with this type of argumentative writing.

At the end of the course, you will have learned how to:

  1. Identify the purpose, audience, major claims, and kinds of evidence offered in a variety of texts;
  2. Participate in academic discourse, as well as other forms of writing, by producing text with a clear purpose and audience, supported by evidence acceptable to that audience and, when applicable, using an appropriate citation style;
  3. Develop recursive writing and researching processes, including identifying a controversy within a conversation or discourse community, conducting appropriate research, planning, drafting, critiquing, revising, and editing – taking into account written and oral feedback from the instructor and from peers;
  4. Demonstrate essential information literacy skills, including discovering subject-specific information and arguments, understanding how information and arguments are produced and evaluated in relevant academic communities, critically evaluating claims in sources, and using source material effectively in creating new knowledge and participating ethically in communities of learning;
  5. Locate resources for the continued support of their development as writers; and
  6. Develop credibility by using appropriate language and diction, by effectively incorporating source material, and by portraying ideas in clear and clean prose.


Major assignments: You will complete four formal writing projects, each approximately 5-8 pages long. Together, these four essays account for the majority of your grade.

You will write genres about social and political topics which mirror those we’ll be reading about and discussing as a group. These topics include food, technology, identity, and higher education.

Supplemental assignments: Supplemental assignments include short essays, exercises, reading responses, quizzes, and forum posts. Expect one or two per week. Most supplemental assignments can be completed in one sitting. Length and point value vary; 30% total.

Required texts and materials:

I plan to assign an eBook package through IDAP that includes the materials listed below. By enrolling in the course, you will automatically gain access to the required materials, and before the semester begins, a bookstore IDAP rental charge will be added to your MyUH account.

Lunsford, Andrea et al. Everyone’s an Author with Readings, 3rd ed., W. W. Norton, 2020.

Bullock, Richard, et al. The Little Seagull Handbook. 3rd ed., W. W. Norton, 2017.

InQuizitive for Writers. An adaptive game-like learning tool that will help you learn about information literacy and how to document sources and revise sentence-level issues.

Important: Please do not attempt to purchase these materials on your own until you have contacted me.