Student Guide alp 053: American Language II: Writing

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Bergen Community College

Division of English

Department of The American Language Program
Student Guide

ALP 053: American Language II: Writing
Semester and year: Spring 2012

Course and Section Number:

Meeting Times and Locations: C-316; Fridays 6:20pm to 9:05pm
Instructor: Katherine Howard

Phone: 609-502-2306

E-mail Address:
Course Description

ALP-053 American Language II: Writing gives students work on both guided and free writing exercises at the paragraph and essay levels.

3 lec., 3 non-degree credits

Prerequisite: ALP-043 Pre or CO-requisite: ALP-051/052
Course Texts and/or Other Study Materials

The required texts for this course are:

Engaging Writing 2, by Mary Fitzpatrick, Pearson Longman

(ISBN: 9780132483544)

The Longman Advanced American Dictionary (ISBN: 978-1405-8295-26)

Learning Goals:

As a result of meeting the requirements in this course:

  • Students will be able to generate ideas based on readings and discussions, and formulate a plan for expressing them cognizant of audience, purpose and voice.

  • Students will be able to write paragraphs and essays using academic rhetorical patterns.

  • Students will be able to select, and use appropriate resources for research assignments. Students will be able to select, use and cite resources in their writing.

  • Students will be able to construct grammatically correct sentences that convey the writer’s intended meaning.

  • Students will demonstrate a blend of basic and sophisticated language that is level appropriate.

Means of Assessment

  • Students will write journals, paragraphs and essays in class and out of class.

  • Students will show their prewriting strategies.

  • Students will show their revising and editing skills.

  • Rubrics will be used to help assess student performance.

  • Students will share their work with classmates and the classmates will help revise and edit the work.

  • Students will complete a research assignment.

At the end of the course, all students take a course-wide Writing Exit Test. Students will write one essay in 70 minutes. Students must pass the final exam in order to pass the class. Practice final exams are made available to acquaint the students with test format and content.

Course Content

  • Students will employ strategies of pre-writing organization: brainstorming, bubble diagrams, Venn diagrams or outlines.

  • Students will determine audience for and purpose of writing as well as voice appropriate for audience and purpose.

  • Students will write guided and unguided paragraphs, essays, and journals.

  • Students will demonstrate competency in the form of the paragraph: topic sentence and supporting sentences within an essay.

  • Students will demonstrate competency in the form of the essay: ability to formulate thesis, body, and conclusion.

  • Students will begin to demonstrate competency in the writing of major and minor support for an idea.

  • Students will write argumentative/opinion, comparative/contrastive, narrative and cause/effect essays.

  • Students will write at least two 350 word essays.

  • Students will be able to use standard formatting for paragraphs or essays.

  • Students will write essays and paragraphs with reference to texts and support writing based on information in texts.

  • Students will write summaries and paraphrase texts.

  • Students will use information in an ethical and legal manner.

  • Students will write an effective blend of simple sentences with compound elements, compound and complex sentences, all of which are reflective of thoughts students intend to write.

  • Students will make revising and editing a part of the writing process.

  • Students will use capitalization and punctuation correctly.

  • Students will use vocabulary that is varied and appropriate for level two.

Special Features of the Course

I have constructed a website for this course. It is the WRITING portion of the grammar site from last year.

This is the website where all the course information can be located.

Grading Policy

A student’s final grade for the course is based primarily on his/her performance on the required work for the course (homework, writing assignments, tests), class participation, group work and on his/her overall mastery of the material covered in the course.

Sample grading policy

Essays: 30%

Class participation and quizzes: 5%

In-class paragraphs: 40%

Journals: 10%

Research Project 15%

Grade Breakdown: A 90-100

B+ 86-89

B 80-85

C+ 76-79

C 70-75

D 65-69

F 64-below

Attendance Policy in this Course:
Students are expected to attend class regularly and punctually. Attendance will be taken at each class session. If students occasionally arrive late, they should enter quietly, and not disturb the class. If students miss class, they should find out what they missed. It is probably a good idea for students to exchange telephone numbers with other students as a way to find out about missed classes.
Poor attendance will affect a student’s grade. If a student’s absence exceeds one and a half times the number of weekly meetings, the student’s grade will be lowered by one full letter grade. If a student is absent excessively, the student can expect to fail the course. Lateness counts, too. Two late arrivals will equal one absence.
Student and Faculty Support Services

ELRC (English Language Resource Center)

Room E-156

201- 612-5292

The Office of Specialized Services (for students with disabilities)

Room S-131


The Sidney Silverman Library – Reference Desk

Room L-226


Sample Course Outline & Calendar

Note to Students: The following Course Outline and Calendar is tentative and subject to change, depending upon the progress of the class.






Class canceled




Sandwich making

Sample essay (Groundhog’s Day)



Discussion of essays

Valentine Day’s sample

Pick a research topic



The Five Paragraph Essay

President’s Day




Bring your topic and your brain



Thesis Statements, Topics and Hooks

Pick a research thesis statement



In class writing

Research paper outline due




Examples and Support

St. Patrick’s Day discussion



Drafting and Revising

Bring notecards and your research for your research paper



In class writing & Editing



In class writing & editing

Conferences with teacher



Good Friday – I will not be in class.

Write your research paper and get your portfolio ready



Portfolio due

Earth Day discussion



I think this will be test day

Research paper due




Get back research paper and portfolio.

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