English 021: English Fundamentals (3.00 Units)

English 021: English Fundamentals (3.00 Units)


Section Number: 1211

11:00am-1:35pm, every MTWTh

Humanities Building, Room 115


You must purchase these texts the first week of the course:

REAL SKILLS Interactive by Susan Anker You may purchase a kindle
Publ. by Bedford St. Martins edition of this text or a print
ISBN: 978-1-4576-5410-7 one

The Gold-Bug and Other Talesby Edgar Allan Poe

Publ. by Dover Thrift Editions For these two books, you must
ISBN: 0-486-26875-6 purchase print editions only.
No online versions of them are
Woman Hollering Creek and Other Storiesby Sandra Cisneros allowed.

Publ. by Vintage Contempories
ISBN: 0-679-73856-8

Required Materials: You must purchase a CompBook of about 80 notebook pages (no spiral-bound notebooks, graph-paper notebooks, three-ring binders, nor diaries) and also a portable stapler for this course. Both items are available at any 99-cent store. You will also need two examination books.

Prerequisite: You must have either successfully passed English 33 ordemonstrated appropriate writing skills suited for this class with the college’s placement test.

This class is offered on a Pass/No Pass basis only.


Instructor: Patrick Hunter Office: Humanities Room 121

Student Drop-in Hours: You may stop by my office for any person-to-person conversation you wish during these days and hours: M andW, 9:00-10:30 a.m., and also by appointment. If you wish to leave a phone message, then do so through the English office, 1-818-947-2586. You may also email me at


Course’s Purpose: English 21 teaches the fundamentals of English grammar, reading; and the writing of sentences, paragraphs, and short essays. After successfully completing this course, you may enroll in English 28.

Student Learning Objectives: Upon completion of this course, students will demonstrate critical reading comprehension, including the ability to analyze, synthesize, evaluate, and question basic college-level texts, and relate the content of what they read to experience outside the classroom. They will write focused coherently organized, well-developed paragraphs and essays, using relevant examples and details to support a clear thesis, and demonstrate competence in English grammar and usage.

How the Student Learning Objectives will be assessed: Students will be evaluated on meeting these outcomes through major reading comprehension tests and/or text-based writing assignments, in-class, scored according to the rubric coordinated to these outcomes (The grading rubric is attached to this syllabus). A major out-of-class essay assignment will also be assessed according to the rubric.

Course Goals: Upon completing this course, students will be able to use appropriate tools of active reading: to preview, interpret, analyze, and evaluate pre-collegiate texts, as well as identify and restate main and supporting points of a text, identify its organization, and relate ideas from text to others. They will be able to plan an essay, compose paragraphs with explicit topic sentences, and/or short essays with explicit thesis statements, develop and support ideas fully using concrete details and examples, and organize and connect specific details and evidence in a paragraph or essay. They will also assess early drafts and revise them to improve organization, coherence, support, unity, and word choices; moreover, within the context of an essay, they will correctly apply the elements of sentence structure, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, spelling, and usage. Along with all this, they will revise sentences to improve their clarity, grammatical accuracy, and fluency, as well as differentiate among direct quotation, paraphrase, and plagiarism.

Plagiarism and Student Conduct: When you download or use another writer’s words without acknowledging them as your own, you are committing plagiarism. When you incorporate words and ideas that are not your own into a paper, you must give credit. Anyone found committing plagiarism will receive an “F”and no points on the assignment and be referred to the Vice President of Student Services for further disciplinary action. For more information, refer to the Standards of Student Conduct and Disciplinary Action in the current Schedule of Classes and Catalog or

Financial Aid: Many of you qualify for financial aid and you should visit the Financial Aid Office in the Student Services Building. Their phone number is 818-947-2412. For more information, their website is

Access for Students with Disabilities: If you are a student with a disability for test-taking, then you should contact the SSD (Services for Students with Disabilities), if you haven’t already. You may telephone the SSD at 818-947-2681 or TTD (818) 947-2680 to meet with an SSD counselor. Please meet with me to make arrangements for tests.

Assignments required for passing:As already mentioned, English 21 is a credit/no credit section, so by the end of the course, you will receive no grade but simply whether you have passed or not passed. Here are the five areas of coursework you must concern yourself with:

  1. Journal – 30 points
  2. Homework– 15 points
  3. In-class essay Assignment – 20 points (only by the second essay)
  4. Reading Quizzes–15 points
  5. Book Analysis Essay– 20 points
  1. Journal: This begins the first day of class, and requires you to compose a conscientiously written paragraph every day, seven days a week, including holidays. A separate handout will explain more.
  1. Homework: Look on the assignment sheet for what homework you must submit at the start of class. I only accept homework on the morning when it is due, and at the start of class. If you miss that, then you miss that day’s homework points.
  1. In-class essay: You must write two in-class essays, and you must demonstrate improvement with the second one. At least one of the essays must receive a “Pass” or “Pass minus” to achieve credit in this area.
  1. Reading Quizzes: During the time we spend on the stories, I will give pop quizzes. If you have accomplished the reading and arrive when the class starts, you should be able to pass them.
  1. Book Analysis Essay: You will write an essay that incorporates quotes from the assigned readings and relates them to a thesis. More information will come with a separate handout, but the essay must be completed and then revised after it’s completed.

By the end, you must have acquired at least 70 points altogether in order to pass this course. Keep track of your points and do all the work needed to earn them!

Attendance Policy: Each day we meet will count as two sessions, with a short break mid-way through. I will take role at the start of the two sessions, and if you are not present, then you are marked absent. If you arrive a little late, it is your responsibility to let me know you have been present; if you don’t, then your mark will remain as an absent. If you miss four class sessions, or two full days, then I will exclude you from the class. Please do not show me doctor’s notes for your absences; I do not excuse absences for medical reasons or any other reason. Whatever the reason, when you’re absent, you’re still absent.

Tardies count as well. For this course, a tardy is defined as your missingtime in class. This doesn’t just count for missing the start of class. If you walk out of the room during a class session (instead of waiting for the midway break or for the session to end), then I will ask your name in order to mark you as a tardy. I will mark you tardy for stepping out of class for answering an important phone message, or leaving class for a doctor’s appointment or heading off for work, or any other reason.

Do not assume there are exceptions to this policy. Whatever your reason is for missing class, you are still missing class, and it will normally count asa tardy. The only exception will be if you need to leave class for a medical reason. In that case, you must show me a doctor’s note that details your physical need to get up and leave during the session (also, please talk with me on this); otherwise, your leaving will be marked as a tardy.

A tardy counts a tardy if the time missed from class amounts to less than fifteen minutes. If you miss more than fifteen minutes, then your tardy turns into an absence. Also, three tardies equal one absence, and so if you have twelve tardies, then I will exclude you from the class.

Class Behavior: I don’t think I need to say these rules for most, but for some of you, this information is needed:

--Smart phones, I-phones, and other devices of the current electronic revolution must be turned off once class starts. If you use yours during class time, then I will confiscate it.

--If you fall asleep, or even look asleep (ie, your head on your desk), then I will mark you absent and you can somewhere else to sleep.

--You will also be asked to leave if you do reading/writing for other classes during classtime, or if you do homework/journal work for this class during classtime. Classtime means devoting your attention to the class activities.

--When class is not in session, you may sit wherever you wish, but during the time that class is in session, I have and I fully use the authority to tell you where you sit. I like everyone to sit up close. I also like to have students who sit in the far back to sit up close. Studies show students who sit up front do well. Don’t be surprised if I change the seat you think you should have.

Assessing of Writing: Writing is a skill that results from many influences over years, and your essays are judged based on ability. Hopefully this course will help you to improve your writing, but bear in mind that, depending upon your ability, you may work very hard and still not pass.

Page one of three

English 21: Tentative Schedule of Homework Assignments

Right after each date listed below, you must enter class by 11:00 a.m. with that homework assignment completed.

*************************Week One**********************************

W 1/04:Bring your three texts to class as well as your journal, which should have one developed paragraph.Also, enter class today having read REAL SKILLS Interactive,Chapter 2 “Getting Ready to Write” (pages 11-19) and do Practice 3 on page 17. Like all the exercises from this text, you must write it out on a separate piece of paper. You must follow the instructions and demonstrate Patti’s method if you want credit.

Th 1/07: Bring in your journal, which should have two developed paragraphs. Also you must bring in a large examination book (also known as a greenbook) for your first in-class essay.

***********************Week Two***********************************

M 1/09: Enter class having read “The Tell-Tale Heart” (pages 74-78), “The Black Cat” (pages 108-115) and “The Cask of Amontillado” (pages 116-121) of the book The Gold-Bug and Other Tales. Also bring to class three lists of ten words from each story: altogether thirty words, their parts of speech and their definitions. Also bring your book to class; anyone without it will lose a point in their homework.

T 1/10:Enter class having read “The Masque of the Red Death” (pages 57-61) and “The Pit and the Pendulum” (pages 62-73)of the book The Gold-Bug and Other Tales. Also bring to class two lists of fifteen words from each story: altogether thirty words, their parts of speech and their definitions. Also bring your book to class; anyone without it will lose a point in their homework.

W 1/11: Enter class having read “Ligia” (pages 1-13) and also “The Fall of the House of Usher” (pages 14-29))from the book The Gold-Bug and Other Tales. Also bring to class two lists of fifteen words from the stories: altogether thirty words, their parts of speech and their definitions. Also bring your book to class; anyone without it will lose a point in their homework.

Th 1/12: Enter class with your copy of the book The Gold-Bug and Other Tales. If you don’t have it with you, then you will be marked absent for the day. Bring also notebook paper as well, for an in-class writing activity: creating an analytical paragraph.

Page two of three

*************************Week Three*****************************

M 1/16 No class today: Happy Martin Luther King Day.

T 1/17: Enter class having read all the stories on pages 1-67 of the book Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories. Bring your book to class. The homework for today is for you to bring in an analytical paragraph on one of the stories from today’s reading assignment.

W 1/18: Enter class having read the story “Never Marry a Mexican” (pages 68-83)and then read all the stories on pages 114-134 from the book Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories.Bring to class your book and an opening paragraph with a thesis derived from either the Poe stories or Cisneros’ ones. It must be wordprocessed and do save it.

Th 1/19:Enter class having read all the stories (pages 135-165) from the book Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories.Bring to class your books and an analytical paragraph, with a quote and citation. It must be wordprocessed and do save it.

****************Week Four: Workshop Week***********************M

M 1/23: Today, you must enter class with a completed out-of-class book analysis essay (follow the instructions on the handout). It must be wordprocessed, 12 Font, Times New Roman, double-spaced, and exceed the minimum length of three full pages. Anyone without an essay must visit the Writing Center. Also, read REAL SKILLS Interactive, Chapter 8, “Complete Sentences” (pages 93-99) and on a separate sheet of paper create five of your own compound sentences using the f.a.n.b.o.y.s. and after that then create five complex sentences. Altogether, this sheet must have ten sentences and you must clearly indicate that you know the difference between a coordinate conjunction and a subordinate conjunction if you want credit.

T 1/24Read REAL SKILLS Interactive, Chapter 7, “The Parts of Speech” (pages 81-92) and create six of your own sentences: one with 1) subject pronoun, 2) one with an object pronoun, 3) a possessive pronoun, 4) reflexive pronoun, 5) relative pronoun, and 6) interrogative pronoun. Afterwards, read Chapter 13, “Other Grammar Concerns,” (pages 162-174) and do practice exercises 4, 5, 6, and 7. Be sure to write out full and complete sentences if you want credit. Also bring in your Book Analysis Essay; anyone without it a second day will need to visit the Writing Center a seond time.

Page three of three

W 1/25Also, read REAL SKILLS Interactive, Chapter 12, “Verb Tense Problems,” and do practice exercises 2.4,and 5 (on pages 133-140). After completing them, then do practice exercises 6,7,8, and 9 (on pages 141-161). Also bring in your Book Analysis Essay, and it should be a clean, newly printed out copy, if you didn’t bring one in on 1/27.

Th 1/26 Final Draft due: Today, you must bring in the final draft of your Book Analysis Essay, with the two previous drafts stapled underneath it. Also, read REAL SKILLS Interactive,Chapter15, pp 212-227 and do Practice 6(on apostrophes) as well as Practice 7 (on quotation marks) on a separate sheet(s) of paper.

**************************Week Five*******************************

M 1/30: Student conferences. Remember your appointment time and arrive early. Anyone who misses their appointment will count as an absent. Be sure to bring you first in-class essay and your journal as well.

T 1/31: Today’s assignment will be announced….

W 2/1: Read REAL SKILLS Interactive,Chapter 14, “Style, Word Choice, and Spelling” (pages 196-211). Select at least ten words from the boxed list on pp. 210 -211, and write each of these ten words ten times (correctly spelled).

Th 2/2: Today, enter class with an examination booklet, and also your journal for the last journal check. You will write your second in-class essay.