ENC 1101: Writing Academic Arguments

ENC 1101 focuses on the critical thinking and analytical writing skills students need to effectively participate in various intellectual communities. Accordingly, this course introduces students to the written conventions of academic argumentation, especially as these conventions reflexively impact the logical and persuasive choices writers make. Students will therefore learn how to analyze the contextual, rhetorical, and cultural argumentative strategies employed in academic genres through critical reading, writing, and class-based discussion. Students will also improve basic communication skills, collaborative writing methods, and composing practices through a systematic investigation of different academic writing styles.

Course Structure

Since ENC 1101 aims to develop students’ academic argumentation skills, each course is designed to provide a coherent context in which to learn these skills. To this end, ENC 1101 is a themed course, where argumentation and writing are conceived through as a semester long investigation of an intellectual interest. Students will have a writing textbook and a course anthology encompassing a singular area of academic concern, such as science and technology, religion in the 21st century, environmental issues, ethics, or sports culture as a course resource. Alternatively, some sections will work with a multi-genre text that covers subjects important to popular culture, like education, gender roles, race issues, and consumerism. Students should consult the University Writing Program website for specific course themes.

Course Objectives and Outcomes

ENC 1101 will teach students to

  • plan, draft, revise, edit, and proofread an argumentative essay
  • read, write, and think critically
  • use evidence to effectively support argumentative claims
  • write an organized, logical argument
  • avoid plagiarism
  • write coherent, cohesive, and clear paragraphs
  • create direct, grammatically-correct sentences
  • develop a clear, graceful writing style

For more information on what skills and objectives are appropriate in first year composition courses, interested students can go to the “WPA Outcomes Statement for First-Year Composition,” developed by the Council of Writing Program Administrators.