9/2 Learning Through Writing

Please post your 100 word responses here!

Discussion: Pick one concept, idea, or strategy from Learning Through Writing that you think will improve your writing this semester. Explain why. Also, choose one term you are unfamiliar with and thoroughly define it.

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18 Responses to 9/2 Learning Through Writing

  1. Kwan Yuk says:

    One strategy from learning through writing that improves my writing is choosing the right and strong verbs because they can make my writing feel more powerful and confident so that the readers can clearly understand what I think about my sources. They can show the implied relationship of me and my readers and my topics in a better way.In next writing, I will be more careful to choose the verbs that I use. For example, I will definitely use endorse instead of agree.

  2. Kailey White says:

    One strategy from Learning Through Writing that I feel will help me greatly is “using quotations and making arguments.” I feel it will improve me as a writer to get a better understanding of the topic, novel, etc by researching the materials of the specific topic, and getting someone else’s insight on a certain subject. Looking up topics for quotations won’t only give me background information, but it will give me more knowledge on what I am writing about and will further me into my writing this semester.

  3. A strategy that I find useful to employ in my writing in order to make an improvement are “Ten Sentence Patterns.” I feel that diction and syntax are aspects of language that often go unnoticed but play an important role on the way a piece of literature impacts the reader. By utilizing a few of the sentence patterns into my work I may find that I will have a more effective way of influencing my audience. I think that how well a person writes is a reflection on how well a person thinks. If I am able to improve my syntax and grammar, hopefully it will allow me to have more clear and constructive thoughts.

    A term which I had no idea what it meant was, “ethnographic essay.” And apparently it is, “… a qualitative research method used most often in the social sciences, such as anthropology and sociology. Rather than relying on statistical data as in quantitative research, ethnography attempts to describe an experience in the social world and the personal lives of people. In order to write an ethnographic essay, you must gather empirical data through one of the following methods: Interviews, participant observation or questionnaires.”

    Read more : http://www.ehow.com/about_6527457_definition-ethnographic-essay.html

  4. A strategy suggested from the Learning Through Writing that would improve my writing this semester is Jason Tougaw idea of “Integrating Sources and Indicating Stance”. After reading the examples provided by Tougaw, I have realized that the verbs used to introduce a source makes the evidence that follows flow fluidly into the argument and thus overall making the argument stronger and having a coherent essay. Throughout the semester I will refer back to the lists of verbs presented in this section of the reading. My goal is to introduce my sources with various verbs other than “states” and “says” without having to refer back to the text.
    A term that I was unfamiliar with was ‘idiosyncratic’, which means a behavior or trait that makes a something or someone unique almost peculiar.

  5. leroy mcleod says:

    After reviewing my writing, I found that the two areas I think I need to improve my engagement with my sources as well as my structure. I found that my writing structure was very similar to the one described in the Structure heading of Gordon Harvey’s “Elements of the Academic Essay”. I also found that I had a very typical relationship with my sources (“This is my thesis, this is my source, my source says this so therefore my thesis is right…”) and therefore creating a typical listing of facts that any reader could simply just Google for him/her self. Why even bother reading my paper, right? I think that the strategies detailed by Gordon Harvey and Mark Gaipa in ways to improve structure and source engagement (respectively) could really help improve my writing this semester.

    One term I am unfamiliar with is “Dropping Out”; I think it means taking a conversation point and turning that into the base and center of the conversation. For example: “HIV is being spread rapidly among the younger generations”; would be the critical conversation and “Premarital sex being common among other things causes it to spread faster” would be a conversation point. “Dropping Out” would then, in my understanding of the definition, turn the whole conversation over to how Premarital sex is the main cause of the rapid spread of HIV and how an premarital sex is wrong and an end to it could be an end to the rapid spread of HIV.

  6. Erica Arce says:

    To improve my writing this, I believe that Gordon Harvey’s “Elements of Academic Essay will best help me to do so. Harvey introduces 12 fundamental points of an essay. In reading each of these, I understand more thoroughly what is expected and how I can further my skill in writing. Writing has not always been a strength of mine. This document can serve as a guideline this semester. For example, the use of “structure” and “sources” will be most advantageous. I would be able to develop my essays in a basic form while smoothly incorporating data from sources that justify my thesis. Also, I would practice correctly citing sources within the paper.
    A term that I was unfamiliar with, when reading the handbook, was “tangential”.
    “This seemingly tangential or insignificant matter is actually important or interesting”.
    (“Motivating Moves”: Kerry Walk)
    Tangential is divergent or digressive, as from a subject under consideration. In this case it is straying from the main point or idea.

  7. Steph Geliebter says:

    Mark Gaipa’s “8 Strategies for Critically Engaging Sources” included some interesting ways to incorporate a scholar’s idea into your own writing. Different techniques were given, explaining how to take another’s work and bring it into your writing while both avoiding accidentally presenting that writer’s ideas as your own and also giving your own writing a new spin with points of view you may not have thought of previously.
    As I write this semester, I will keep this resource in mind and incorporate these various methods I haven’t thought to use before; this will improve my writing by increasing the interest as I bring my ideas in in new, varied ways.
    I have heard the word “rhetoric” before, but never fully understood it’s meaning. According to the online Merriam Webster dictionary, it is defined as “the art or skill of speaking or writing formally and effectively especially as a way to persuade or influence people”.

  8. The “Principles of excellent writing” such as “the development of style appropriate to a particular audience” is one concept that should help me improve in my writing this semester. This will allow me to see any common mishaps that currently take place in my writing and allow me learn how to write more appropriately to any particular audience of my writing. The term I was unfamiliar with was Stitching. Stitching is the way a writer connects separate parts of an argument. This can be achieved by the placement of transitional words or referring to an earlier part of an argument in an essay.

  9. Cameron Burt says:

    Personally, “strategy 5: Playing Peacemaker” interests me greatly. This strategy entails identifying a predicament, or argument, between two people and resolving it by instilling your own perspective. I believe that this strategy will enhance my writing for many reasons. Throughout my life I have always attempted to settle disagreements between my friends, family and honestly anyone who seems to be arguing. Although I’ve always played the role of a “peacemaker”, I have never attempted to incorporate this technique into my writing. Additionally, I believe this technique will supplement my writing because one of my weaknesses in writing is that I tend to ramble. This technique will enable me to keep my keep my writing concise.

    Finally, one term that I came across in the reading that I was unfamiliar with was “idiosyncratic”. After investigating the meaning of this term it is apparent that it means individual, in so many words.

    Idiosyncratic- Distinctive, peculiar or individual to someone specifically.

  10. Nihad says:

    I have done many papers, essays and works of writing and all of my critiques have said (or in some cases scolded) one thing in common: my writing is often filled up with unnecessary sentences or are misplaced within the writing. “Learning through Writing” identifies this as structure and suggests that sentences within a work of writing would have more relevancy when placed within a structure. This is what I have to work on throughout this course and the handbook does give many suggestions some new, some done before; brainstorming, proof reading, peer critique. A term I did not know prior to reading this handbook was: tangential, which means inconsistent or digressing from the main point, which often times can define my writing.

  11. Jiajiefan says:

    The one concept from Learning Through Writing that I think will improve my writing is based on “Elements of the Academic Essay” by Gordon Harvey. Because it introduces 12 essential points for writing an academic essay, and by including these points can help me to organize my idea ,have a distinct theme and increase the credibility of my idea,etc. However, Orienting is the term that I’m unfamiliar with. Orienting: Helping the reader, who is unfamiliar with the subject, to follow the thesis by using the various and believable information.

  12. avner baruch says:

    The strategy from Learning Through Writing that I think will help improve my writing the most are the ideas presented in Gordon Harvey’s, “Elements of the Academic Essay.” Gordon Harvey articulates the different components that need to be included in an academic essay. For example, in the element of evidence Harvey explains that you must have concrete facts that support your thesis in order for the reader to believe what you have written. This will help me think about selecting evidence that will clearly and persuasively support my thesis. One term that I was unfamiliar with was “stitching”. Stitching is the use of words and sentences that link different concepts together in an academic essay.

  13. avner baruch says:

    The strategy from Learning Through Writing that I think will help improve my writing the most are the ideas presented in Gordon Harvey’s, “Elements of the Academic Essay.” Gordon Harvey articulates the different components that need to be included in an academic essay.

  14. In hoping to improve my writing capabilities this semester, I would like to use a strategy adapted from Mark Gaipa, an author described in Learning Through Writing. One strategy which I hope improves my writing is Leapfrogging, or Biting the Hand That Feeds You. Leapfrogging is agreeing with a certain source before recognizing a problem, such as a contradiction, in the source and correct it. This method would allow me to see mistakes within the reading, and in a way, correct it so I would not repeat the same one while bolstering my argument in my writing.

    One term I am unfamiliar with is Taking on the Establishment, or Acting Paranoid. Essentially, this method question’s everything in the reading by claiming a dispute is based on false information or that the consensus is not official. Basically, this method encourages writers to disagree with the majority claim by proving that my assumptions are correct. And this is a method I am uncomfortable with, because it is very difficult to back up my claims when the information is the exact opposite on what I want to write. I hope the strategy I picked will assist me in my college career as I will learn more about the other method I find questionable.

  15. The idea of allowing students to engage in “scholarly and professional debates, dialogues,and controversies about major issues in a given field” (page 7), would help to improve my writing this semester. By allowing these discussions about class topics students can see views of others that they maybe would not have thought of otherwise. Hearing these different opinions on a subject could allow a student to show a different side of an issue in their writing. These debates could also change opinions on a certain topic or bring to light another issue or fault in the subject. By having the class engage in these talks students are exposed to diverse thoughts and can practice using rhetoric that can also be used in their writing. Using Rhetoric in these debates can allow students to understand how authors sway the readers to make them grasp their opinion and in turn allow the student to utilize this new found skill. One term that I am not completely familiar with is MLA (modern language association) citation format, MLA style for documentation is widely used in the humanities, especially in writing on language and literature. Also MLA includes brief parenthetical citations in the text keyed to an alphabetical list of works cited that appears at the end of the work. (mla.org/style)

  16. Shanna Razak says:

    One strategy from Learning Through Writing that could definitely improve my writing is reflecting, especially in the case of writing an argumentative essay. Its obvious that when a point is needed to be proven, stating evidence from articles or other pieces of writing can be done. However to further convince the reader to believe in my point of view proving my opponent (the counterargument) wrong is definitely a must.This eliminates any doubt one has against my position . To be able to think like my opposition gives me the ability to think of the evidence my opponent might use to persuade others to see things the way they do. This can therefore assist me in looking for additional support that will show the adversary’s evidence as misleading or even weak

    Expository (adj)- used to explain writing that is used to explain something

  17. xiaozhen says:

    I think “using quotations and making arguments” will improve my writing, because I need to understand what the quotation means ,and to analyse what the author really wants to express.I need to explain my idea whether I agree or disagree according to which book or movie I choose. It can push me to read more books to correct more information so that to make my essay more connotation.It’s like “kill two birds with one stone”.
    Stitching: a row of stitches that have been sewn in a piece of cloth. General means to put the two parts together.

  18. Matthew Chan says:

    After reading the pamphlet I feel that all of Gordon Harvey’s “Elements of the Academic Essay” are very important to writing a paper. Mr. Harvey lays out the format of an appropriate paper and gives us an in depth description of each section. In high school, I wasn’t prepared to write long papers and everything seems new to me. Mr. Harvey’s work gives me a bit of an insight into what work is like in college and will hopefully help me write proper papers for the future. My term is ebullient, meaning to be extremely lively or enthusiastic. An example of this would be, “Mr. Jones became ebullient when he learned that he had passed all of his college courses with high grades”.

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