First Impressions Essay

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First Impressions Essay

Writing 101: Writing in the Discipline, Psychology

Truong / Fall 2009

Christian Magallon (9/1/09)

In my opinion it is your first impression of something that ultimately gives you the perfect vantage point in which to accurately assume the true nature of something. Your notion of this something is then unaffected or swayed by any outside sources or by second guessing yourself. Upon first experiencing this first time offered course, I immediately felt right at home concerning the direction in which the course was headed and also with the enthusiasm and involvement of the professor.

The first class began as any other, anxiously awaiting an unknown professor and the educational information he bears. With a proverbial collective sigh of relief, the class was greeted with a pleasant professor offering a most interesting lesson plan on the writing in the discipline of psychology. After welcomed introductions class was underway and a new appreciation for my major was attained. Our first homework assignment required us to read and analyze an article entitled “Making Science Understandable to a Broad Audience” by Richard Reis. The article portrays the notion that we as those in search of educational advancement must accommodate the manner in which we write for individuals many whom are otherwise unaware. This piece I believe sets the tone for this course in its entirety and my perceptions as to what is seeks to achieve, in that to truly know and understand an idea or concept one must have the ability to correctly perceive and present information of the utmost importance to the vast majority.

Throughout my college career I have strived to put forth my best effort and achieve a great standing in all my courses. I plan on not doing any different here, so upon perusing the course syllabus I noticed many assignments wherein groups were involved. In my past experience, sadly I have had many instances in which fellow group members became ‘clingers’ to my dedicated work whilst I labored on it. Assignments listed as anything prefaced by the dreaded utterance “Group,” made me question my position here. Despite my reservations I believe that those fellow students in my class are just as dedicated as I and wish to succeed just as much. Without further explanation of the group work involved, much of it looks fairly familiar to projects that I have done in past classes both in college and high school concerning poster presentations and literature reviews.

My worries, other than those aforementioned, lie in the “Individual Components” of the course description and what they might entail. At least for me, when work pertaining to that of doling out constructive criticism is required I simply feel inadequate in telling others how to go about their work. Other than that one hiccup, the rest of the work to be done individually seems common or at least manageable. In the past I have kept a record or journal of daily events of significance, in that I can see doing well in keeping a research journal. Being accustomed to modern times and technology use should help serve me in using the “Learning E-Portfolios,” and submitting assignments online.

My major is in psychology and therefore have read extensively on the subject as well as taken previous writing courses, all of which will hopefully aid me in doing well this semester. I feel as though this course will play towards my strengths and will be successful overall. Although, I do not expect to go without surprises, I trust this course to challenge my writing ability as well as my grasp on psychology


  1. How would you describe your experience in working on this assignment (Was it difficult to begin? Did the ideas come easily or with difficulty? What obstacles did you face in the process of writing? How long did it take you?)?

A: As with any paper, I found it slightly difficult to begin because I enjoy taking the time to organize my thoughts into a cohesive and coherent piece. In the writing process I found it difficult to completely fulfill the requirements in that the book contained in the courses required reading section had been backordered and in an attempt to continue, I had purchased a copy on and am sadly still awaiting its arrival. From beginning to end this essay took me around two hours to complete in its entirety.

  1. What do you see as the strengths of this paper?

A: I believe the strengths of this paper to be my honesty involving the course. It may or may not help with improvements and or changes in future assignments and course direction.

  1. What do you see as areas for improvement in the paper?

A: Not to sound cliché but I believe that all papers still require improvement. No matter how many edits or drafts it takes there will always be one idea or point that may have been over expressed or a central one that had been simply left out completely. I may need to improve upon my ordering or overall flow of my paper to achieve a better read.

  1. What did you learn (about yourself, the subject, writing, or reading) from doing this assignment?

A: While writing this piece I learned that I truly enjoy expressing myself through writing. Although I consider myself to have a limited vocabulary I find nothing more exciting than to surprise someone with my work.

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