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Freshman Composition101-12 MTTH 1:00–1:50
Fall 2019

This is a "real time" syllabus that, unlike a print syllabus, will be continually updated and reflect our progress throughout the semester. You can easily check it from a mobile device or from any computer.

The syllabus consists of the Reading Schedule and Course Policies. You are responsible for understanding and following the schedule and the course policies, which are in effect from the first day of class. Please read them carefully (more than once and throughout the semester). Please see me if you have any questions about them.

Think of the syllabus as a flexible guide. It will structure our semester, but we will adjust it to fit our needs as the semester progresses. Not all assignments are listed at the beginning of the semester; some will be added throughout the semester. It may also be necessary to finish some readings the following class period, in which case I will update the syllabus after each class. Again, be sure to check the syllabus regularly.

You do not need to print the syllabus, but if you decide to, be sure to check the online syllabus regularly for new information, added assignments, or reading schedule changes. The print icon above is for print copies.

We will use three texts for the course to help you learn about the writing process as well as writing about sports. These texts are not an unecessary expense but rather helpful resources we will use in class and you will use outside of class to help you become a more effective writer. You will use the grammar book, Rules for Writers, for this course, English 202, and other courses until you graduate. The following acronyms are used on the Reading Schedule.

TSGW=The St. Martin's Guide to Writing
SL=Sports in Literature
RW=Rules for Writers

Readings and assignments should be finished for the day assigned. For example, chapter 1 from TSGW should be read (completed) by September 09, when we will discuss it. Check each class period to see what books you need to bring.

Monday Tuesday Thursday
02 Labor Day 03 Course Introduction: Why Write about Sports?

Pre-semester quiz
05 Review Course Website

For Essay 1: Game Story -You must see your game and complete interviews by 10/2

Essay 1: Game Story
**Preview Course Notes - Taking Notes, Interviews

Look at sample game notes during class

Discuss headline & lead of sample game story (handout)
09 TSGW - Ch 1: Composing Literacy
**Bring reading notes to class in your notebook

Game story: Continue planning: Choose a game you will go see and set up interviews with players and coaches--See Course Notes

Look at sample game notes (9/5)
10 TSGW - Ch 13: Cueing the Reader
**Bring reading notes to class in your notebook

**Look at sample game notes (9/5)
12 Guest Speaker Allison Lund: Taking notes for a game story/interviews

**Bring 2-3 sample interview questions (in your notebook) you might use

16 TSGW - Finish Ch 13/Final Thoughts, Chpts 1 & 13

Sports poetry--SL  (Read these poems--"In the Pocket" (24); "The Sprinters" (121); "Baseball" (199-201)

Assignment: Interpret key lines

RW, Ch 14: Coord/Subord (Just preview this chapter/Concept: What is coordination? Subordination?)

Sample game stories (handout)

17 SL--Sports poetry (9/16)

Essay 1 - Introduction: Writing a Game Story
(**PowerPoint Slides)

Preview Course Notes:
Essay 1 - All links

Planning: TSGW - Ch 2: 12-18; Ch 14: 470-77; 480-89.
We will refer to these chapters during the next weeks.)

***Find two complete print sports sections (not just one or two game stories) from a local and national WEEKEND/MONDAY newspaper: by 10/4. Do not use online newspapers; do not use The Pointer

19 Game Story--Planning

Card Due--sports poetry (5pts)

TSGW, Chpts 2, 14 (9/18)

23 Sample game stories (handouts). Highlight and annotate these based on criteria from class discussions

TSGW, Chpts 2, 14
RW, Ch 14: Coord/Subord

24 Game Story--Planning

Sample game stories (handouts). Highlight and annotate these based on criteria from class discussions (9/20)

TSGW, Chpts 2, 14

26 Game Story--Planning

Description exercise--in class

Discuss: scratch outline (TSGW, 422-23) and audience sheet (Course Notes)

RW, Ch 14 (exercises)

30 Game Story--Planning

Lecture: History of Sports Journalism
01 October

Look Below
03 October

Look Below
Monday Tuesday Thursday

Look Above

01 Game Story--Planning

Quiz on the History of Sports Journalism (10pts)

Sample game stories (handouts). Highlight and annotate these based on criteria from class discussions (9/20)

Handout - Sports section analysis study sheet--fill this out for Friday

TSGW, Chpts 2, 14

03 Game Story--Planning

Analysis of newspaper sports sections--bring entire print sports section (two) to class (see 9/18--you don't need to highlight/annotate these) 

 Handout - Sports section analysis study sheet: use for discussion

**Set up for SL readings next week

Outside class:
Drafting scratch outline (TSGW, 422-23) + audience sheet (Course Notes)

Be ready for drafting next week

07 Game Story--Planning

Discuss Essays - SL: 
[See Course Notes - Write out responses (notes) to questions]

In-class group assignment--card

Answer all questions but focus on question 2 and, if relevant, question 3 for each piece

Have these read for today

1. "Ace Teenage Sportscribe"
2. "Johnson is Everywhere"
3. "Great Day for Baseball in the 90s"
4. "You Don't Imitate Michael Jordan"

Make connections to TSGW, Chpt 14

Outside of class
Scratch outline of your game story (TSGW, 422-23) & example from class; draft of audience sheet

08  Game Story--Planning

Discuss Essays - SL: 
[See Course Notes - Write out responses (notes) to questions]

In-class group assignment--card due (5pts)

Answer all questions but focus on question 2 and, if relevant, question 3 for each piece

Have these read for today

1. "Ace Teenage Sportscribe"
2. "Johnson is Everywhere"
3. "Great Day for Baseball in the 90s"
4. "You Don't Imitate Michael Jordan"

Make connections to TSGW, Chpt 14

Outside of class
Scratch outline of your game story & example from class; draft of audience sheet

10Essay 1: Game Story: Drafting

Bring completed scratch outline (not just a few paragraphs)
Bring draft of audience sheet--in progress

Begin actual draft of game story in class--headline, lead

TSGW: Review chapters 2, 14

**Final look at description exercise--Ovechkin goal

14 Meet in Computer Lab: TBA

Essay 1: Game Story: Drafting

Have complete/almost completed, typed drafts of game story + audience sheet.  You'll work on these in the lab, so be able to access these in the lab

Bring scratch outline & of course, game/interview notes

TSGW: Review chapters 2, 14/Peer Review, pp 44-45

RW, Ch 16: Wordiness

15 Essay 1: Game Story: Peer Review--Must Attend

TSGW: 44-45--Preview PR questions/See Course Policies on Peer Review

Bring to class:

1. Typed, print (hard) copy of Audience Sheet 
2. Typed, print (double spaced, 12pt, pg #s - not columns) (hard) copy of completed game story. Minimum 3 full pages/Max. 4 1/4 full pages. Drafts must have quotations

**You cannot use an electronic version of your draft or audience sheet for peer review

Please bring TSGW/RW, sample game stories, scratch outline
17 Essay 1: Game Story: Return Peer Review Materials

Formatting - Columns

Revision checklist (handout)

Revision (TSGW, Chpts 2, 14)

**Conclusion/Stats--if time allows


RW, Ch 32: Commas (pp 268-71)

Due:  Game notes due + interview questions and responses; turn in photocopies or print copies if typed (NOT your original notes & questions).  Staple or paper clip--no loose pages
21 Essay 1: Game Story: Revision, Editing, Proofreading

**Bring draft formatted in columns and audience sheet draft (not peer review copies) + revision checklist

Due: scratch outline


**Lead/Game Summary/Quotations
**Audience Sheet
**Pacelli game story (volleyball)


**RW, Ch 16: Wordiness;
Ch 32: Commas, 271-76

22 Due: Essay 1: Game story--Peer review materials Due (aud sheet draft  + gs draft + notebook paper--responses: paper clip)

(**Begin previewing/reading stories for Essay 2--see 11/4)
Game Story (Essay 1)

**Bring draft formatted in columns and audience sheet (not peer review copies) + revision checklist--from 10/22

Revision: Game summary, audience sheet
**Pacelli game story (volleyball)

Editing: RW, Chpts 14, 16, 32: Coord/Subord, Wordiness, Commas

Assign 1: Narrative Response Assignment.  Submit via email, 500 words max

Readings from SL. Preview these.

1. "Finding Myself" - 10;
2. "Four-Minute Mile" - 38
3. "Why I Play the Game" - 78
24 Due: Essay 1: Game story + Audience sheet + Revision chklist Due: paper clip

Assign 1: Narrative Response Assignment

TSGW, Ch 2 (12; 15, 41-48)

Readings from SL (Answer Study Questions in your notebook.  See Course Notes).  Be prepared to discuss these.  You will choose ONE of these for Assign 1

1. "Finding Myself" - 10;
2. "Four-Minute Mile" - 38
3. "Why I Play the Game" - 78


28 Assign 1: Continue discussion SL readings (10/25)

29(**Continue previewing/reading stories for Essay 2--see 11/4)

Assign 1: SL - "In the Swim" (As time allows; not a choice for Assign 1)

RW, Ch 8: Active Verbs




31Assign 1: Draft Narrative Response in class

Formatting for email assignment

Bring all books, notes, everything you need to draft
Monday Thursday Thursday
04 Assign 1 Due via email by midnight.  Include assignment in body of email, not as an attachment.  500 words max

RW, Ch 33 (Unnecessary commas)

Essay 2 - Introduction: Literary Analysis about Sports Fiction (PowerPoint Slides)

Preview Course Notes:
Essay 3 - All links

You must read all stories, but you will choose one to write about. Preview these

"The 7-10 Split"--SL
"Doe Season" (handout)
"56 - 0" (handout)
"Raymond's Run"--SL
"The Thrill of the Grass"--SL

(You should be reading stories and taking notes--have an organized system of taking notes for each story)

Preview Course Notes:
Essay 1 - All links

Planning: TSGW - Ch 10

RW 13-14 (formal outline); TSGW, 424-26
05 Reading and Writing about Literature (Lecture). We will combine this lecture with preliminary discussion of the stories. TSGW, 392-95/All of Ch 10

RW 13-14 (formal outline); TSGW, 424-26


07 Meet in Computer Lab 323 CCC (Bring your laptop if you wish)

Essay 2: Planning

Story Choice Paragraph Due (Typed), 5pts

In-class Focused Freewriting (TSGW 428) - use short story you are writing about

Freewriting Assessment Chart (handout)

RW 13-14 (formal outline); TSGW, 424-26

TSGW, Ch 10 (Sample Essays, pg 382 & 386)

11 Essay 2: Planning

Quiz - short stories (all 5 are in play). 

Review freewriting (11/12) assessment chart. Bring freewriting sample (print out or electronic copy) + chart

Aud Sheet (Course Notes)

TSGW, Ch 10 (Introduction, 400/sample essays; Thesis, 396-97)

RW 13-14 (formal outline); TSGW, 424-26
12 Essay 2: Planning

Aud Sheet (Course Notes)

TSGW, Ch 10 (Introduction, 400/sample essays; Thesis, 396-97)

RW/TSGw formal outline
Bring your formal sentence outline to class--should be mostly

Draft Introduction--if time allows
14 Essay 2: Planning

Discuss all stories--SL + handouts

Bring formal sentence outline + audience sheet

18 Essay 2: Planning

Discuss all stories--SL + handouts

Bring formal sentence outline + audience sheet

19 Essay 2: Planning & Drafting

Finish discussion of stories--SL + handouts

Drafting:  Bring laptop to classBring introduction and thesis to class.
Revise as needed; begin body paragraphs

Bring formal sentence outline + audience sheet

21 Meet in Computer Lab TBA

Essay 2: Drafting

Draft 1-2 pgs.

** Bring Aud Sheet and completed Formal Outline

TSGW, Ch 10 (Sample Essays, pg 447 & 450)

Reading notes, PowerPt notes; Focused freewriting, Stories

Integrating Quotations: See Power Pt notes; TSGW 546-53

25 Essay 2: Peer Review--Must Attend (No make up if you miss this peer review.  You will receive a zero.)

Bring all booksBring all books--TSGW, 401-02 (preview peer review questions)

1. Copy of Audience Sheet (typed)
2. Copy of outline (typed or handwritten)
3. Copy of completed draft, including quotations (typed): 4 pages min - 5 pages max

Electronic copies of your audience sheet or draft are NOT acceptable for peer review
26 Essay 2: Return Peer Review Materials to Partner

Revision Chklist (handout)

Bring all books

**Audience Sheet
**Formal Outline


**RW, Ch 12 Modification
28Thanksgiving Break
Monday Tuesday Thursday
02 Essay 2: Revision & Editing

Revision Chklist

Bring "clean" copy of your draft (not peer review copy)

Bring all books

**Audience Sheet
**Formal Outline

**Reasons/Topic Sentences

03 Essay 2: Turn in Peer Review docs [aud sheet + draft + responses from partner (notebook paper)] Paper clip

Essay 2:  Final Review: Revision, Editing, Proofreadng

Bring aud sheet and draft from 12/3
Bring all books

**Audience Sheet
**Formal Outline


**RW, Ch 12 Modification/Review

Final look at stories (SL) if needed

Assign 2 - Analyzing a Comic Strip: Girls & Sports
1. Assign Groups/Preview Slides

Collaboration & Writing (TSGW, Ch 27)

**Decide on a strip
**Planning doc(s): TSGW, Ch 11
**Planning schedule for completing essay (handout)
05 Due: Essay 2 + Aud Sheet + Formal Outline + Revision Chklist (paper clip)

Assign 2 - Analyzing a Comic Strip: Girls & Sports

Work with you partner

Collaboration & Writing (TSGW, Ch 27)

1. Decide on strip/take notes
2. Research??  bkgrd: creators/publication/strip's characters, situations, & issues/Quoting from strips?  
3. Planning: Invention docs? TWGW, Ch 11
4. Set up Planning Schedule

Begin drafting over weekend?

09 Assign 2: Drafting

Bring Notes and Planning Docs/TSGW & RW
(See 12/7)

Review/Revise Planning (Invention) Docs & Planning Schedule

Research on strip: bkgrd--creators/strip's characters, situations, & issues/Quoting from strips?

Begin/Continue drafting
10 Assign 2: Peer Review--Must Attend

Each group brings TWO print, typed copies of their draft: 1 1/2 pages, double spaced.  Put names on the draft. 

No handwritten or electronic versions of the draft

Bring your comic strip sheet + books. 
Bring your planning schedules
12 Assign 2: Revision, Editing

Peer Review Due: Turn in 2 peer review drafts + question sheets with responses (paper clip)

Bring all books


**Review Chpts 14, 32, 33, 8, 12


 Assign 2 due date--See Blue Box Below

**Course Evaluations
**Bring quiz from first day of class
**Grammar "competition" -- for extra points!


Finals Week: Dec 16 - Dec 20
Office Hrs during Finals Week: See website home page and all page footers 
Assign 2 Due:  TBA
What's Due: TBA
Course Grades posted online: TBA

The General Education Program--Written Communication

Introductory writing classes provide an essential foundation of communication skills on which students can build throughout the rest of their university careers and beyond. They develop students' skills in analyzing audience, structuring written documents, and understanding and applying the conventions of effective writing. Subsequent writing courses build upon these skills by helping students learn to locate sources, critically analyze information, and synthesize their ideas with those of others to write well-supported academic arguments. They also provide an essential starting point for the more specialized writing students will be expected to do in the future within their fields of study.

  • Compose an articulate, thoughtful, grammatically correct, and logically organized piece of writing with properly documented and supported ideas, evidence, and information suitable to the topic, purpose, genre, and audience.
  • Apply your understanding of elements that shape successful writing to critique and improve your own and others’ writing through effective and useful feedback.
Course Description and Learning Outcomes

This section of Freshman English is a writing-intensive course that will focus on sports, mainly in the United States. Like all writing courses, this course is designed to give you experience writing for various purposes, for various audiences, and in different contexts. More than just a knowledge of "good grammar," effective writing requires a range of activities, from invention and planning to drafting and revising, activities that you will practice throughout the semester. All of our assignments, however, will examine ideas about the meaning of sport in our society and how sport shapes our culture and our sense of identity. No one can doubt the central role of sport in our society today, and even throughout the world, so it makes sense to explore why this is the case through reading, thinking, discussing, and writing. Why are we so interested in, obsessed with, and attracted to sport? The appeal of sport has to be more than its entertainment value. Of course, the most notable sports cliche--life is like a game (or is it a game?)--underscores the significance of sports for us.

Through sports journalism, popular culture, and literary analysis, we will try to gain insights into these questions. You will find your own experience with sport--either as spectators, participants, or both--is a key source of your knowledge and understanding about it. In addition to thinking carefully about sport as a subject for writing, you will

  • Understand how writing is a way of sharing information, expressing viewpoints, bringing about social change, and connecting people, all essential for an inclusive democracy
  • Analyze the relationship between the writer and his and her audience as well as the contexts that shape the writing about sport as well as other types of writing
  • Integrate reading, planning, drafting, peer review, editing, revision, and proofreading into the writing process with a focus on grammatical correctness to acheive effective written communication
  • Express an understanding of the ways in which sport is a microcosm of society.
Text Rental

The St. Martin's Guide to Writing. Axelrod and Cooper. 12th ed., Bedford/St. Martin's P, 2019.

Sports in Literature. Bruce Emra. 2nd. ed., National Textbook Co., 2000.

Purchase at Bookstore

Rules for Writers. Hacker and Sommers. 9th. ed., Bedford/St. Martin's P, 2019.
**You will use this handbook for English 202 and throughout your university education.


During the semester, you will complete weekly and longer-term writing assignments dealing with the topic of sports. Class discussions will be the most informative and helpful if the reading assignments have been carefully thought over and all students participate and share ideas. To prepare for class discussions, it will be helpful to take notes. Note key passages or language that points to central concerns or ideas in the reading assignments. Write out key ideas and concepts along with your thoughts and questions that you have. Throughout the semester you will be required to complete planning assignments and rough drafts. Please be prepared to bring these to class to share with classmates so that we can discuss them and make suggestions for improving them.

During the semester, there will be weekly writing assignments, some quizzes (announced and possibly unannounced), peer review assignments, and three essays. The course grade will be determined mathematically using the percentages below. Please remember that your course grade will be based on the work that you submit, not simply the effort you make or my subjective opinion.

Course Grade %
Weekly Writing/Quizzes** 15%
Peer Review 10%
Essay 1 - Game Story 30%
Essay 2 - Literary Analysis 30%
Assign 1 05%
Assign 2 10%
** Will be determined by point values: A=10; A- =9; B=8; C=7; D=6; F=5-0

All work must be completed on time. It is your responsibility to keep copies of all of your planning work, assignments, and quizzes. Some assignments may be submitted via email, and email communication will be required throughout the semester.

Late Assignment Policy: Assignments due on a given day must be submitted at the beginning of the class period. An assignment that is finished but not printed out and ready to hand in is late. Late assignments will be accepted one day after the original due date (not the next class), but will lose one letter grade or the point equivalent. After that, they will not be accepted. (Assignments due on Friday that are late must be turned in by 5pm.) Assignments due electronically must be received by the day and time specified. Late email assignments will be accepted 24hrs from the original due date. For any special circumstances, please contact me ahead of time. No incompletes will given in the course.

Essays submitted late will lose 1/3 of a letter grade each day they are late, including weekends (e.g., original grade B. Two days late, C+). For any special circumstances, please contact me ahead of time. It may not be possible to make up some quizzes or assignments.

Peer review: Peer review days are very important because you will receive specific, targeted feedback about your essays and, in turn, provide feedback for a writing partner. This process will help you become a more effective writer. Peer review days are mandatory. If you miss them, you will lose all peer review points. If you do not have all of the required documents, properly prepared, you will lose all points for peer review and your essay grade may be lowered too.

For any special circumstances, please contact me ahead of time. It may not be possible to make up some quizzes or assignments.


Regular attendance is your responsibility and is essential for success in the course. As stated in the online UWSP Course Catalog (UWSP Course Catalog), you cannot "cut" classes. There are no excused or unexcused absences. You have personal days to use and manage as needed.

If you miss a total of two weeks of class (six class meetings since we meet three times a week), you may fail the course. You may be able to make up missed assignments/quizzes with my approval; therefore, it is your responsibility to determine work that needs to be completed and to follow up with all logistical requirements. It may not be possible, however, to make up some assignments or quizzes.

If you are absent, you do not need to email me to explain your absence. If you would like to find out about missed information, it is best to stop by during office hours or make an appointment to see me. You can email me about missed information, but I may not be able to respond before our next class meeting.

However, if an assignment is due or there is a quiz, then you do need to email me before or the day of the assignment due date or quiz.  And you must have a legitimate reason for your absence.  You cannot just expect to be able to turn in a missed assignment or make up a quiz.

Classroom Etiquette

During class meetings, we will discuss and debate issues about writing and literature. It is fine to express your views passionately and debate others in class, but do so in a civil, constructive manner.

Please do not use phones and mobile devices during class, even if you believe you are doing so quietly. Not only is this rude, but also it distracts other students as well as your ablity to focus on and follow class instruction and discussion. It is English Department policy that students cannot and should not record class lectures and discussion without permission from the intstructor. Also, please get drinks of water or use the washroom before or after class, not during class, so that our classroom does not become a bus station. Please see me if you need special accomodations.

Plagiarism (from the Latin "to Kidnap")/Cheating

You will be expected to do your own work throughout the course. Intentionally or unintentionally passing off the ideas, words, or sentences of others (e.g., published authors, website authors, other students) as your own is plagiarism, which will result in failing the plagiarized assignment and possibly the course. Please review the University policy regarding plagiarism.

Anyone caught cheating during quizzes or exams (e.g., looking at someone else's paper or using a cell phone) will fail the quiz or exam and be reported to the Dean of Students Office.