WR 123 - Composition: Research Writing
While continuing the goals of WR 122, this course emphasizes skills needed to complete a quarter-long research project. Students will write a research essay that supports an analytical and/or assertive thesis. WR 123 also emphasizes the critical reading and writing skills involved in defining and researching a genuine problem of inquiry, as distinct from encyclopedic reporting. May be offered online.
Prerequisite: With a grade of C- or better or pass in WR 122 or WR 122_H or placement test.
Upon successful completion of this course, the student should be able to:
1. Engage in and value a respectful and free exchange of ideas.
2. Demonstrate critical thinking and reading skills:
a. Actively read challenging college-level texts, including: annotation, cultivation/development of vocabulary, objective summary, identification and analysis of the thesis and main ideas of source material.
b. Evaluate sources for authority, currency, reliability, bias, sound reasoning, validity, and adequacy.
c. Research and synthesize disparate sources, weighing various conclusions based on the evidence presented in order to build a credible research-based discussion.
d. Develop a thesis or claim based on the evaluation and synthesis of primary and secondary sources.
3. Make appropriate and effective rhetorical choices during all stages of the writing process: invention, drafting, revising, and editing:
a. Use appropriate rhetorical strategies to support an argumentative or position-based thesis/claim in a research-based paper.
b. Address issues of purpose and audience, anticipating and preparing for reactions to written work by audiences outside the classroom.
c. Choose appropriate language (voice, tone, style, etc.) to persuade an informed and educated reader or to assert a position taken by a writer.
4. Exercise Appropriate methods of development and support:
a. Demonstrate the ability to organize longer research papers with an introduction, logically arranged body paragraphs that develop the thesis and synthesize information from a variety of sources, and a conclusion.
b. Utilize an organization that will reflect the scope and nature of the thesis.
c. Thoroughly develop and support the thesis with a balanced and insightful presentation of evidence.
d. Demonstrate an ability to summarize, paraphrase, and quote sources in a manner that distinguishes the writer’s voice from that of his/her sources and that gives evidence of understanding the implications of choosing one method of representing a source’s ideas over another.
5. Demonstrate successful use of the research and writing process:
a. Use library resources (e.g., subject indexes, online databases, etc.) to locate information, recognizing that there are different resources available for different purposes/subjects.
b. Demonstrate successful use of the research process: writing research proposals, formulating incisive questions, conducting library and/or field research, taking careful notes, and compiling an annotated bibliography or review of literature.
c. Use some advanced research techniques to locate sources (e.g., subject indexes, Boolean search terms, etc.).
d. Recognize the recursive nature of both research and writing.
6. Effectively and correctly use accepted conventions and formatting:
a. Demonstrate the ability to use Edited Standard Written English (ESWE) to address an academic audience.
b. Use a writer’s handbook and/or other resources with increasing sophistication for style, grammar, citation, and documentation.
c. Include index, pagination, and appropriately integrated visuals into projects, as needed.
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