ENGL 1001 Writing, Reading, Culture

Instructor Contact:

Teresa Nugent, PhD

Email: teresa.nugent@colorado.edu

About the Course:

In Writing, Reading, Culture, students hone their reading, research, and writing skills for college-level critical analysis and academic writing. We’ll focus on three skill sets: writing mechanics, literary analysis, and academic research.

Writing Mechanics: Understanding how sentences work in terms of syntax, grammar, and punctuation will help you to compose clear, concise, and convincing prose. In this class, you will draft, proofread, revise, and then repeat multiple times.

Literary Analysis: We’ll read a selection of literary texts, and practice close reading techniques and thesis formulation. In discussion posts and short papers, you’ll identify and critique textual evidence to support or refute interpretations of texts.

Research: You’ll select one author and text for in-depth analysis and devise a research question. Using online research tools on the CU Libraries website, you’ll learn how to find and evaluate scholarly articles, and how to incorporate relevant scholarship into your final research paper.

Learning Goals:

Students who actively participate and complete the work for this course will be able to do the following tasks:

  • Demonstrate comprehension of syntax by identifying and explaining the role that words perform in sentences, clauses, and phrases.
  • Apply techniques for revising drafts to improve your written work.
  • Communicate ideas in clear and concise sentences, using correct syntax, grammar and punctuation.
  • Analyze literary texts with close reading practices.
  • Formulate compelling thesis sentences and craft convincing interpretations of literary texts, based on your close reading analyses.
  • Formulate a compelling research question and conduct preliminary research to identify relevant scholarly sources on authors and literary texts.
  • Search academic databases and select relevant articles; summarize and evaluate scholarly interpretation of literary texts.
  • Integrate relevant scholarship into your written analysis of a selected author and text to produce a research paper.
  • Actively reflect on and revise your own and your peers’ written work, by evaluating syntax, grammar, punctuation usage, as well as application of close reading techniques and argumentation strategies.

Required Text:

Casagrande, June. It was the best of sentences, it was the worst of sentences: A Writer’s Guide to Crafting Killer Sentences. 2010. ISBN-13: 978-1580087407

Additional texts to be determined. Most readings will be provided in digital format in Canvas.


Syllabus Quiz                                                               2%
Perusall Annotation Assignments                              20%
Discussion Posts                                                         25%
Zoom Conferences                                                      6%
Paper 1 – Close Reading Analysis                               12%
Paper 2 – Annotated Bibliography                             10%
Paper 3 – Research Paper                                           15%
Paper 5 – Revised Research Paper or Blog Article     10%


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Monday – Friday
9:00am to 4:00pm


We are located at the corner of University Avenue and 15th Street in a white brick building.


1505 University Avenue
University of Colorado Boulder
178 UCB
Boulder, Colorado