English 101: First Year composition

This syllabus is for an ENG 101 course that I taught which was focused on asking students to understand viewpoints-- their own and others. The first project asked students to write about a strong opinion they held. They then did primary research: they interviewed someone who influenced their opinion such as a family member, friend, or mentor. Following that, they wrote a reflective essay in which they examined the values and beliefs that formed their opinions. The second asked them to write an unbiased informational report on a voting issue. Students were split into groups, and each group researched a topic in which they were interested. At the end of the project, each group created a presentation in which they were to teach their classmates about the voting issue. So, they each wrote an individual paper that they synthesized in order to give a group presentation. The third project asked them to think critically about another person's viewpoint. We read short stories by Claudia Rankine, Sandra Cisneros, and a chapter of Fun Home by Alison Bechdel. Using Focault's concept of power as a lens (specifically pp. 92-96), students examined the ways in which power worked in each of these short stories.