This course is the required first course in a series of two designed to develop the ability to produce clear expository prose. Emphasis is on the writing process including audience analysis, topic selection, thesis support and development, editing, and revision. Upon completion, students should be able to produce unified, coherent, well-developed essays using standard written English.


Like other college students, you are probably preparing for a career, and there is no profession in which communication, particularly through writing, does not play an important role. Depending on your field, you may need to write articles for professional or academic journals, write proposals for business projects, answer customer correspondence, prepare manuals for in-plant use, or carry out a variety of other writing tasks. This course will help you improve your communication and writing skills. At the completion of the semester, you will know how to gather and organize information; draft, revise and proofread your papers properly; employ the appropriate writing strategies; and adapt your writing for specific audiences and purposes. In short, you will know how to take charge of your thoughts and express them through quality writing

Satisfactory Placement Score

Vorel, Desirée E.

Adjunct Assistant Professor in English
Part Time
B.A. (2004), Clemson University; M.A. (2007), M.F.A. (2007), Chapman University
Subject Matter: 

Desirée Vorel received her college degree in 2004 from Clemson University in Clemson, South Carolina. Between 2004-2007, Mrs. Vorel completed her Master of Arts in English and her Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Chapman University in Orange, California. During her tenure at Chapman University, Mrs. Vorel assisted in the Writing Center, taught introductory English and worked as an English tutor. Mrs. Vorel has taught 8th and 9th grade English and served as a copywriter. From 2007 through 2009 she was also employed as an Adjunct English Instructor and Writing Center tutor for Tri-County Technical College in Pendleton, SC.

Course Credit: 
Three (3) semester hours
Required Texts: 

Mosaics: Focusing on Essays (4th ed.) by Kim Flachmann
ISBN-10: 0-13-231968-3

You are responsible for the chapter readings that correspond with each class lecture. Please read the assigned chapters and/or essays prior to viewing the lectures and finishing the weekly assignments

Additional Readings: 

Most weekly readings will be in the Mosaics textbook, however essay samples will be posted to lesson pages in .pdf format.


A video lecture will be provided for each lesson. Additionally PowerPoint slides (that you may download in .pdf format) may accompany some lectures. Please see the course webpages for further details.

Course Requirements: 

Weekly Assignments
1. Icebreaker - To officially begin this course you must complete the icebreaker assignment. Please post a short (200 word or less) autobiography as a reply to the "Icebreaker" topic on the Lesson 1 Discussion Forum. Do NOT create a new discussion. Please use the following questions to guide your biography:

a. What is your name?
b. What church area do you attend?
c. Where do you plan to attend the Feast of Tabernacles this year?
d. What do you believe are your writing strengths and weaknesses?
e. What do you hope to learn from this class?

2. Discussion Board Posts - For each rhetorical mode (narration, illustration, process/analysis, comparison, causation), you will read a corresponding essay then answer a few questions about that essay on that lesson’s Discussion Board. As it is a discussion board, please read and respond to at least one other student’s reply. The idea is to talk about the various elements of the essay so that you may better understand how to implement them in your own papers.

3. Practices - Most weeks, you will complete and turn in the assigned Practices (please see Weekly Schedule for specific assignments). The Practices are scattered throughout the chapters, so you may complete them as you complete the weekly reading. While the list of Practices due each week may seem long, each is only one or two questions, so you should be able to complete them quickly. You will submit your answers on Friday (or earlier) in a Word document via the Assignments tab on our course page. I will then post an answer key (in .pdf format) the following Sunday so you may check your answers. If you miss any and do not understand why your answer is incorrect, simply send me an email with your question.

4. Grammar Quizzes - You will take a grammar quiz for each grammar chapter we cover. Access the quizzes through the Tests tab, or through the link on the Lesson page. Quizzes will be due on Fridays, but you may complete them early.

5. Essays - This term, five papers are required. Essay assignment specifics may be found in the document “Essay Assignments.” You may turn in only one late paper during the semester, and it must be turned in within 48 hours of the due date. Any plagiarized paper, whether copied or paraphrased from a published article or another person’s paper, will result in an F.

To turn in essays, click on the Assignments tab and then click on the assignment you want to submit. Beneath the description of the specific assignment, click on the “add” button and follow the steps to upload your document for grading.

If you have trouble planning, drafting, or revising a major paper, I urge you to contact me immediately. After grading, I will return your final drafts, with comments. Each paper will be graded on content and grammar. I will grade the grammar in the first essay relatively leniently, but as the course progresses and we cover additional grammar lessons, I will expect higher proficiency and as such will grade more strictly. You will have the opportunity to earn back lost grammar points, however, by turning in an Error Log for each paper within one week of receiving your graded essay.

6. Final Exam - For the final exam you will turn in a Final Portfolio, which will include revised copies of the five essays you write during the semester. Please see the document “Essay Assignments” for further details.

Late Work
You are allowed to turn in one late assignment. This does not apply to weekly assignments, grammar quizzes, or the final portfolio. It does apply to the five essays. If you need to use the late pass this semester, keep in mind that the late assignment MUST be turned in within 48 hours of the due date. Every essay is due on a Monday, therefore if you decide to use your late pass, you must turn in the essay by that Wednesday. If you fail to turn in your essay by midnight Wednesday, you will receive a zero.


Grading Category Weight   Letter Grade Percentage
Weekly Assignments 10%   A 90-100%
Grammar Quizzes 10%   B 80-89%
Narrative Essay 12%   C 70-79%
Illustration Essay 12%   D 60-69%
Process/Analysis Essay 12%   F 0-59%
Compare/Contrast Essay 12%      
Cause/Effect Essay 12%      
Final Portfolio 20%      

Students With Disabilities
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities have a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. Students having a disability requiring an accommodation should inform the instructor by email (on the “Course Info” page click on the instructor’s name and then select “Send Email”).

Technology Access
This course requires web access and the student has to have an established e-mail account. The Adobe Acrobat Reader is necessary to view documents that are PDF files. One can download the reader free at

Course Evaluation
Student input is welcome for improving this course. Making suggestions by e-mail is helpful. Our goal in this course is to facilitate the successful achievement of all instructional objectives by all students. At the end of the course students have the opportunity of assessing the course. We want to make e-learning courses as effective as we can. We may also ask some other questions concerning a student’s experience in distance learning to help us improve our program. We appreciate students letting us know how we can improve our products and services for them and other distance learners.

Withdrawing From or Dropping This Course
It is the responsibility of a student to drop a course if he or she cannot meet the requirements of the course. Any student who stops attending a course without officially withdrawing from it risks receiving a punitive grade for that course. Withdrawal requests may be conveyed in any manner to the course professor, Registrar, or Vice President of Academic Affairs. This action is sufficient for ensuring any refund owed you. Please note the following: If a student drops a course on or before the “Last day to withdraw from a course without a grade penalty” as published in the University Academic Calendar, even if his or her work is not of a passing grade, then a “W” is recorded. If a course is dropped after that date, but before the last 21 calendar days of the semester, then the instructor determines the grade. The faculty member will at this time record a grade of “W” if passing (not computed in GPA) or “WF” if failing (computed in GPA). Students who drop a course, yet remain in one or more other courses during the last 18 calendar days of the semester, will receive a grade of “WF.” Students who completely withdraw from the University at any time during the semester may be given a grade of “W” on all courses. If students do not initiate the withdrawal process, the instructor is required to initiate the administrative process and to record a grade of “W” or “WF” for the course depending on the date the faculty member drops the student from the course. Students who register for a course as an audit, but then withdraw will be assigned a grade of “W” for the course.