Final English pro folio

The final portfolio offers you an opportunity to put your best foot forward, choosing your best work throughout the quarter to revise and turn in for your final grade. The purpose of the final portfolio is to make a compendium of all your work, but also, to take the opportunity to choose and revise your best work, the assignments you feel best represent you as a student over the course of the quarter. Correspondingly, every portfolio must include:

A 1-2 page cover letter, written with attention to the requirements outlined in the Cover Letter Assignment.
Every paper assigned in the course: Short Assignments 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 2.1 Major Assignment 1.1. Optional: You may include Short Assignment 2.2 or Major Assignment 2.1 depending if you choose to write a shorter or longer essay about Vertigo.
Thoughtfully revised versions of three (3) short papers and one (1) major paper.

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The final paper will be turned in digitally, via Canvas. Do not take this assignment lightly, as it constitutes 70% of your final grade. The reason for this is not to make the portfolio particularly scary, but rather, to account for the fact that the portfolio includes every single paper you’ve written. Part of the credit for the portfolio will simply be showing that you have written every assignment. Thus, in many ways, the portfolio is easier than you might imagine, as a large portion of the credit you receive from it will simply be from the act of turning in a completed version.

So what are you being graded on? Portfolios will be assessed using the following rubric.

An outstanding (4.0-3.8) portfolio is one that:
Features a cover letter that (1) makes a clear, thoughtful, and honest argument regarding your experience with writing and revision (2) explains clearly and thoughtfully why you chose to revise each paper (3) explains clearly and thoughtfully how your portfolio demonstrates your grasp of each of the four EWP course outcomes.
Shows thoughtful and intelligent revision of each chosen paper. Thoughtful revision includes attention paid to comments generated from previous drafts, both from me and your peers; revision that can be thoughtfully explained in your cover letter; attention paid to making sure that each revised draft demonstrates one or more of the EWP outcomes; thorough grammatical and sentence-structure proofreading; revision that is, overall, appropriate to the original paper’s weaknesses and strengths.

A strong (3.7-3.5) portfolio is one that:
Features a cover letter that follows the same requirements as an outstanding portfolio; a strong portfolio’s cover letter may be slightly less in-depth than that of an outstanding, but will still provide an intelligent discussion of all four EWP outcomes.
Shows thoughtful and intelligent revision of each chosen paper in much the same vein as an outstanding portfolio. A strong portfolio may still have grammatical errors or argumentative weaknesses that do not interfere with the coherency of the overall paper.

A good (3.4-3.0) portfolio is one that:
Offers a cover letter that is less in-depth. A good cover letter may not be as thoughtful or honest as that of a strong or outstanding portfolio; it may not discuss each of the EWP requirements, or forget to explain all three short papers and one major paper. A good portfolio cover letter may be fragmented or disjointed, but still demonstrates an attempt to engage with the questions asked of the cover letter assignment.
Shows revision of each chosen paper, though that revision may seem less-thorough than that of a strong or outstanding portfolio. A good portfolio might have papers that still suffer from disjointed argumentation or a lack of clarity, but are still fairly understandable and feature a clear thesis statement and minor claims.

An acceptable (2.9-2.7) portfolio is one that:
Offers a cover letter that may not meet all the sub-requirements (i.e., does not address all four EWP outcomes, or does not reference the revised papers directly) while still offering a general attempt at providing an argument regarding one’s experience with writing and analysis.
Shows revision that may be weak, harried, or fail to improve a paper’s clarity or argumentation. Papers will by and large still lack major and minor claims, be confusing or difficult in places, or seem truncated, incomplete, or lacking.

You will notice that every possible grade on a completed portfolio is passing; as I have stated before, if you put in the effort and turn in the work, it is very difficult to do badly in this class. But beware of the incomplete (0.0). In order for a portfolio to be graded, it must include every paper written over the course of this quarter: four short assignments, and two longer assignments. It must include a 1-2 page cover letter, and must have in it three short papers and one major paper that have been thoughtfully revised. A portfolio that does not feature these things will receive an Incomplete. It is impossible to pass this class with an incomplete portfolio.

This is not my rule, but rather the language of the EWP program. Common causes of incomplete portfolios include late or missing portfolios, portfolios missing one or more of the quarter’s assigned papers; portfolios missing a cover letter, or featuring a cover letter that does demonstrate an earnest attempt to meet the cover letter requirements, or revision that is largely absent or superficial, focusing only on grammar or deletion.

Portfolio Checklist:
Use this checklist to be sure that you have included copies of all of the required assignments. The titles here should not be your titles; they are the titles on the assignment descriptions.

The Cover Letter
Short Assignment 1.1 (Poe: initial draft and, if given, its scored rubric)
Short Assignment 1.2 (Cather: initial draft and, if given, its scored rubric)
Short Assignment 1.3 (Annotated Bibliography: initial draft)
Major Assignment 1 (Larsen: initial draft and, if given, its scored rubric)
Short Assignment 2.1 (Livingston: initial draft and, if given, its scored rubric)
Optional: Short Assignment 2.2 or Major Assignment 2 (Hitchcock: initial draft and, if given, its scored rubric)
A revised short assignment of your choosing (please start with earliest essay assigned)
A revised short assignment of your choosing
A revised short assignment of your choosing (please end with the latest essay assigned)
A revised major assignment of your choosing (regardless of its placement in the quarter)
If required by the prompt, please included a bibliography after your respective paper (i.e. separate bibliographies for separate assignments)

Electronic Portfolio:
You will be submitting your papers electronically, via Canvas. You will be doing so in the same manner in which you always turned in assignments; however, this assignment will prove to be much larger.

You will be submitting on large doc. or docx. file. Imagine you were compiling a physical portfolio and were going to attempt to print off the document. Naturally, you would have page breaks and new pages for separate assignments. Remember to include:

Firstly, you will turn in your 1-2 page cover letter.

Secondly, you will turn in all paper assignments. Only include the drafts you submitted to me, via Canvas; please submit your short assignment drafts with the instructor’s rubric, if available. This means you will be submitting all your papers: (SA 1.1, SA 1.2, SA 1.3, MA1.1, SA 2.1, MA 2.1).

Thirdly, and finally, you will turn in a final selection of assignments for me to grade. This should include a selection of three short assignments and one major paper.

To Reiterate

Beware of the incomplete (0.0). In order for a portfolio to be graded, it must include every paper written over the course of this quarter: four short assignments, and two longer assignments. It must include a 2-3 page cover letter, and must have in it three short papers and one major paper that have been thoughtfully revised. A portfolio that does not feature these things will receive an Incomplete. It is impossible to pass this class with an incomplete portfolio.

This is not my rule, but rather the language of the EWP program. Common causes of incomplete portfolios include late or missing portfolios, portfolios missing one or more of the quarter’s assigned papers; portfolios missing a cover letter, or featuring a cover letter that does demonstrate an earnest attempt to meet the cover letter requirements, or revision that is largely absent or superficial, focusing only on grammar or deletion.

Cover Letter Assignment:

The cover letter, in many ways, represents the goals of this course in the most through and complete form. In a 1-2 page, single spaced letter, you will construct an personal, first person argument that details your revisions and that uses an analysis of your own writing selections as evidence. Everything that we have been working towards in class has been building towards this assignment which is designed to allow you to demonstrate your own fulfillment of the course outcomes in several ways:

Meta-perspective – One of the main concerns of this class has been to assist you in constructing a critical and analytic perspective on your own writing, thereby allowing you to take that viewpoint into other writing situations beyond the English 131 classroom. The cover letter is a means for you to demonstrate your proficiency in this area. By showing me where your writing fulfills each course outcome, you will also be simultaneously proving your ability to effectively critique your own writing.
Explanation – It is up to you which of your papers you choose to submit and revise as the best examples of your work. Your cover letter should explain to me why you chose to use these particular papers. In addition, you should also explain what revisions you have made and why. Using the outcomes, describe how the work that you have chosen illustrates your strengths (and weaknesses) as a writer, reader, and thinker.
Argumentation – The main goal of the content of the cover letter itself is to argue for a specific interpretation of your performance based on the Portfolio Evaluation Rubric. Utilizing the argumentation techniques that you have been practicing all quarter, tell me why you have achieved a certain level of proficiency. Be aware that while you are arguing, you are also framing my own reading and directing it to the strongest points of your writing.

Format: Length: 1-2 pages
Format: business letter format, single-spaced, block format
Final Draft Due: With the portfolio

Business Letter Format:
The business letter format has the same font and margin requirements that have been required for all of your papers (Times New Roman, 12pt, 1 inch margins). However, your name and header will appear differently and you will single-space. You do not need a Works Cited Page or MLA documentation, but if you quote, it should be clear which document you are using.
The paragraphs will be in block format which means that they will not be indented and will be separated by a blank line. You will be addressing your cover letter directly to me, but all of the academic standards and rhetorical conventions that we have learned still apply. Your grade on the portfolio will depend partially on your performance on the cover letter itself, so be sure to take it seriously.

March 11, 2019

[Instructor Name]
Department of English
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195-4330

Dear [Instructor],

Before I moved to the United States almost five years ago, I had never written formal English essays. Throughout high school, I learned the Jane Schaffer writing format: five paragraphs maximum, thesis sentence, two or three concrete details, and each concrete detail fol1ow with three commentaries; therefore I thought it was the only method Americans use to write their essays. Until my senior year in high school, I began to write more than two pages essays using MLA format. It was an eye-opening experience for me, to know there are actually other ways to write essays than Jane Shaffer writing method. Unlike most students, I was actually excited to register to English 131, not because I am able to write perfect, professional, grammar-free essays, but because I want to challenge myself to think logically and also learn to express myself through words, especially in English. After taking this class, I felt my arguments and thoughts are being chal1enged and are moved to higher levels of thinking. Thus, I choose four short papers including “Arise and Shine”, “Visual Verses Text”, “Anywhere Can Be Your Home”, and “How Chinese Language Affects American Education”, along with a major paper “Open Doors to Mandarin Chinese”, to show my improvements in my English writings.

As a freshman in college, I consider developing and producing an argument (or a claim) is one of the hardest challenges in this class, since produce “a claim” for me is a newer concept in writing essay. Before I only knew thesis sentence and then depended on quotes from a novel to support my thesis sentence. Now, I need to produce a complex argument that is worth arguing, is examination of evidence in support of a set of ideas, is taking into “consideration counterclaims and multiple points of view”, and clear organizational strategy. However, you showed us the reading “Letter to the Pulitzer Prize Committee” by Sinclair Lewis in class and helped us to discover the author’s claim and underlying reasons. I began to understand how to develop a claim and use evidence or assumptions to support it. For example, in my short paper 1.3, “Visual Verses Text”, I claim that visual is more effective than the written text by using the cartoon by Jim Borgman and the essay by James Baldwin. Compare to my
– rough draft, I not only eliminate some grammar mistakes, also explain and provide more specific evidence to support my claim in my final draft. My rough draft evaluates one cartoon and one essay specific instead of evaluating visual verses written text in general. In my final draft, I introduced this new claim, “Visual is more effective than written text in addressing similar language and racial issues in our society.” And for the rest of the paper, I use my choice of one cartoon and one written text to support this claim.

Although producing a persuasive argument is very important, incorporating multiple kinds of evidence in order to support my writing is also important. In my short paper 2.1 and 2.3, both require research on the effect of Chinese language in our community and nation. My short paper “Anywhere can be your home” examines the culture and language specific agency CISC, stand
for Chinese Information and Service Center. Throughout the paper (rough draft), I spent much time in summarizing the service instead of strategically summarizing, applying, and re-contextualizing the resources to support the claim. Therefore, I condensed the summary part of the paper and contribute more reasons and ideas so that there -is a “conversation” between texts and ideas; reasons such as services provided by CISC that could connect Chinese people in the Seattle area. Another example, my short paper 2.3 (“How Chinese Language affects American Education”) demonstrates my ability to utilize different and many kinds of evidence I gathered from various library sources. In our short paper 2.3, we were asked to write a paper proposal to defend why our chosen research topic is worthwhile. I chose four out of twenty resources to support my argument of the importance of balancing students’ interests and school requirements. I purposefully chose the language I am familiar with, Mandarin Chinese, in order relate myself with my choice of the research topic, so that I am able to demonstrate my working claim clearly and persuasively. In my major paper “Open Doors to Mandarin Chinese” illustrates how I utilize six main sources to support my claim and I also revise the paper and create conversations that support my writing goal between these six sources. With the help of you and my peers, in my final draft, I mainly focus on presenting outside research clearly to my readers and also eliminate grammar issues.

Lastly, due to peer editing and your responses of my papers, help develop strategies for revising, editing and proofreading writing. In class, you provide strategy such as coloring body paragraphs
in different color serves to distinguish thesis or claim and anything that explicitly connects back to the claim, quote or paraphrase or summary, analysis, interpretation argument, background information, and concluding or summing up ideas. Thus, as I revised my papers, I could get clearer idea of substantive issues raised by you and peers. I am able to make better adjustments of my papers.

Though I spent nights and days writing essays, pondering my ideas, synthesizing multiple kinds of evidence I gathered, developing persuasive arguments, but as long as my brain is still functioning and my hands are typing, I know that I am not wasting my parents’ money and obtaining great education here in the United States.


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