ENG 111: College Composition I, 3 Credits

Michele A. Marits, Assistant Professor of English/Humanities, mmarits@email.vccs.edu 757.822.7050

Faculty Home Page: http://faculty.tcc.edu/MMarits/index.htm

Course Description

Introduces and prepares students to the critical processes and fundamentals of writing in academic and professional contexts. Teaches the use of print and digital technologies to promote inquiry. Requires the production of a variety of academic texts, totaling at least 4500 words (15 pages typed) of polished writing. This course requires proficiency in using word processing and learning management software. This is a Passport and UCGS Transfer course.

Prerequisites - None
Corequisites - None

After completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Critical Thinking
    Critical thinking is the ability to use information, ideas, and arguments from relevant perspectives to make sense of complex issues and solve problems. Degree graduates will create, evaluate, interpret, and combine information to reach well-reasoned conclusions or solutions.
  • Written Communication
    Written Communication is the ability to develop, convey, and exchange ideas in writing, as appropriate to a given context and audience. Degree graduates will express themselves effectively in a variety of written forms.

Required Course Text

Connect Master for Composition, McGraw-Hill, ISBN #9781260376500, E-Book

Please purchase this textbook either from the McGraw-Hill publisher or from the TCC Barnes & Noble Bookstore. You will have a free trial period of 10 days. 

Course Learning Outcomes

  • Writing Processes: Demonstrate the ability to use a recursive writing process to create a variety of academic texts, including at least one essay that incorporates and correctly documents outside sources, producing a total of at least 4500 words (approximately 15 pages) of polished, graded writing.
  • Use prewriting strategies to plan assignments (e.g., selecting/refining topics, brainstorming, organizing ideas).
  • Create multiple drafts of an assignment and revise according to feedback from peers and others to improve development, organization, documentation, and clarity of writing.
  • Reflect on assignments and writing processes.
  • Incorporate appropriate, college-level vocabulary in writing.
  • Edit writing with consideration to surface features, including syntax, usage, punctuation, and spelling appropriate to the rhetorical situation.
  • Rhetorical Knowledge: Demonstrate a clear understanding of rhetorical concepts.
  • Use key rhetorical concepts to discuss writing, reading, and speaking occasions.
  • Analyze purpose, audience, and context of a wide variety of texts.
  • Make and discuss composing choices appropriate to purpose, audience, and context.
  • Demonstrate understanding of and use a variety of genres and media to address a range of audiences.
  • Adapt voice, tone, and level of formality to a variety of rhetorical situations.
  • Active Reading and Critical Thinking: Demonstrate the ability to use active reading strategies and think critically about course materials and concepts.
  • Read and comprehend a variety of non-fiction, college=level texts in a variety of genres using active reading processes, including annotation, summary, reflections, response, and evaluation.
  • Distinguish main ideas from supporting details, evaluate claims and evidence, make inferences, and interpret texts.
  • Demonstrate understanding of vocabulary in texts they read.
  • Discuss course texts and use reading as a form of inquiry.
  • Integrate information from course texts and their own ideas into their writing.
  • Inquiry and Information Literacy in a Digital Age: Demonstrate their ability to use digital and print technologies to produce, evaluate, document, and submit texts.
  • Use word processing software to compose and edit texts.
  • Evaluate the relevance and trustworthiness of digital sources.
  • Demonstrate understanding of the concepts of intellectual property ( such as fair use and copyright) that motivate documentation conventions.
  • Find information using library databases and/or informal digital networks and distinguish between scholarly and popular sources.
  • Select and incorporate information from digital and print sources into writing relevant to genre, audience, and purpose.
  • Knowledge of Discourse Conventions: Discuss and implement conventions of academic discourse, demonstrate knowledge of various genres and audiences, and use documentation formats.
  • Demonstrates understanding that conventions differ across communities, disciplines, and genres.
  • Used Edited American English in texts they compose.
  • Demonstrate contextually appropriate usage and linguistic structure ( e.g. syntax, mechanics) in texts they compose.
  • Use conventions of format, structure, style, design, and documentation, appropriate to the text's rhetorical situation.
  • Apply documentation and style conventions systematically in their own work using instructor-specified format ( e.g. MLA, APA).

Topics Covered in this Course

  • Writing Processes
  • Rhetorical Knowledge
  • Active Reading and Critical Thinking
  • Inquiry and Information Literacy in a Digital Age
  • Knowledge of Discourse Conventions

Description of Assignments/Assessments

Welcome to Your Online Classroom, 5%
Four Required Essays, 50%
Writing a Narration/Description, 8%
Writing a Causal Analysis, 12%
Writing an Argument Research Essay, 15%
Comprehensive Grammar Quiz, 10%

Extra Credit, 3% total for one of the assignments
Total Possible Points: 103

Grading Scale: 90-100 points=A; 80-89=B; 70-79=C; 60-69=D; 59 and below=F
Note: For an "A" final course grade, students must complete the four essays: Narration/Description, Causal Analysis, Argument Research, and Reflection. 

Late assignments are accepted with a penalty. For each day beyond the due date, Canvas will apply a late penalty of 10% to your graded score. The minimum score for any assignment is 0 points.

In the case of extenuating circumstances, alternative due dates can be agreed upon between you and your instructor as long as you have communicated with your instructor PRIOR to the due date.

Disclaimer: Points are different from percentage points since assignments are weighted. Canvas computes the percentage totals and the designated letter grade throughout the duration of the course and the cumulative percentage total and letter grade at the end of the course. For example, 91.67% cumulative total might still be a “B” final course grade

College Attendance, Educational Accessibility, and Plagiarism Policies


Attendance: This course is virtual (onsite); therefore, there are no on-campus meetings. Students are required to engage in all online activities and to complete all required assignments as detailed on the weekly schedule. If students are not present online for two weeks and have not contacted the instructor, they may be withdrawn from the course.

Technology Access: Students need to have access to Canvas, the Internet, and TCC Gmail.

Educational Accessibility
Students who have documented, diagnosed disabilities, and who need special accommodations for tests, etc., are advised to see the Educational Accessibility Disabilities Services staff in Student Services so that the instructor may be notified of what accommodations are appropriate in each case. Requests for accommodations should be made to the designated campus Educational Accessibility counselor at least 45 days before classes begin. Documentation must be provided to support the need for accommodations.



Plagiarism is the intentional or unintentional use of another person’s ideas without proper documentation. Plagiarized assignments may result in a student’s failure. Documentation is required on papers turned in that are not original. MLA Documentation Style is required. TCC uses Turnitin Similarity Report Checker. In addition, Turnitin added an AI Writing Detection Capability which will also show an overall percentage of the document that may have been AI-generated.