English Language Teaching Unit

Office Hours: Tuesdays and Wednesdays: 13:00-15:00

E-mail: apero@unyt.edu.al


Course Purpose

Composition I aims to improve students’ academic writing skills through a step-by-step process of forming well-structured and well-developed sentences, paragraphs, and essays. It also introduces students to authentic academic sources and gives them enough practice with the techniques of reading, note-taking, paraphrasing, summarizing, and APA referencing in order to produce an effective and source-based argumentative essay.

Textbook: Composition I Course Pack (A. Pero) based on the following textbooks:

  • Dollahite, N. E. & Haun, J. (2012). Sourcework: Academic Writing from Sources (2nd ). Boston: Heinle/Cengage Learning.
  • Langan, J. (2008). College Writing Skills with Readings (7th). New York: McGraw Hill.
  • Oshima, A. & Hogue, A. (2006). Writing Academic English (4th ed.). New York: Pearson/Longman.
  • VanderMey, R., Meyer, V., Van Rys, J., & Sebranek, P. (2012). The College Writer: A Guide to Thinking, Writing, and Researching (4th). Boston: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course students should be able to:

  1. Understand that writing is a process not a product, involves certain stages, and is closely related to the reader.
  2. Understand the importance of quotations, paraphrases, and summaries as means of avoiding plagiarism and make proper use of the APA style of documentation.
  • Write clear, well-developed, well-organized, and relevant introductory paragraphs, body paragraphs, and concluding paragraphs.
  1. Write effective cause-and-effect, comparison-or-contrast, and argumentative essays.
  2. Read critically other students’ essay drafts and practice giving constructive feedback.
  3. Read critically, take notes, and summarize several academic articles in order to produce an argumentative essay.
  • Monitor and evaluate their own progress throughout the course and gradually become more independent learners.
  • Learn how to transfer all the knowledge and skills gained in Composition I to other university courses.
  1. Improve sentence skills in terms of grammar, mechanics, punctuation, and word use.

Course Requirements

Class Participation and Homework (30%): You are expected to be present and on-time for each class and to bring all the materials you need for classwork. Your participation grade (a maximum of ten points for a three-hour session) is related not only to your attendance but also to your active participation in class, during homework checking, in-class writing and reading, peer editing, and other homework tasks graded just on your effort and submission ON TIME. You have a limit of three hours of excused absences without losing participation points only if you notify me in advance.

3 Essays (30%): You are expected to submit three essays which need to follow the guidelines discussed in class prior to their submission. Two of these essays, i.e. the cause-and-effect essay and the comparison-or-contrast essay, will be based on your own general knowledge and experience. However, the argumentative essay will be based on the content of some articles chosen by the instructor. The Turnitin Similarity Index for these three essays should not exceed a percentage of five from one source and an overall percentage of ten for the entire text.

Letter Grade Percent (%) Generally Accepted Meaning
A 96-100 Outstanding work
A- 90-95
B+ 87-89 Good work, distinctly above average
B 83-86
B- 80-82
C+ 77-79 Acceptable work
C 73-76
C- 70-72
D+ 67-69 Work that is significantly below average



D 63-66
D- 60-62
F 0-59 Work that does not meet minimum standards for passing the course

2 Exams (40%): The midterm and the final exams will be based on topics and practice exercises covered during the course.

Midterm Exam:   7 December 2015

Final Exam:          8 February 2016


Criteria for Determination of Grade:

Class Participation and Homework ………………30%

3 Essays…..………………………………………..…30% Midterm Exam ……….……………….….…….20%

Final Exam ……………..…………….…………..20%


General Requirements

  • For an effective class participation you are expected to arrive on time, turn off your phones, and be respectful of each other during all class activities. The violation of these rules will directly affect your participation grade.
  • Cheating and/or plagiarism on any assignment will result in a failing grade for this assignment and on a second attempt a failing grade for the entire course.
  • You are encouraged to make good use of my fifteen-minute office hour appointments by booking in advance and preparing the questions you would like to discuss with me.







Course Outline:






12/10/15 Introduction with course objectives, class rules, assessment policy, and course outline.

The process of academic writing (pp. 2-16).





Paragraph structure (pp. 17-31). Unity and coherence (pp. 32-50).


HW: Practice exercises with different types of paragraphs.







From paragraph to essay (pp. 51-72).


HW: Practice exercises with different types of paragraphs.



09/11/15 Cause-and-effect essay (pp. 73-91).


HW: Cause-and-effect essay final draft.



16/11/15 Comparison-or-contrast essay (pp. 92-107).


HW: Comparison-or-contrast essay final draft.





Revision for Midterm






Midterm Exam                       


HW: Active Reading of Source 1.






Exploring sources: Reflecting, open reading, and paraphrasing strategies (pp. 108-118).


HW: Reflecting, open reading, and paraphrasing strategies with Source 2.



21/12/15 Exploring sources: Responding to writing and summarizing strategies (pp. 119-134).


HW: Responding to writing and summarizing strategies with Source 3.





Focusing: Using a research question, focused reading and taking notes, and creating a rough outline (pp. 135-149).


HW: Argumentative essay rough outline.






Organizing: Writing a thesis statement, expanding your rough outline with evidence, and creating a detailed outline (pp. 150-175).


HW: Argumentative essay detailed outline.






Creating: Writing the body of your paper and integrating evidence into your paragraphs (pp. 176-204).

HW: Argumentative essay rough draft.





Refining: Writing introductions and conclusions, building cohesion in your paper, and documenting evidence (pp. 205-243).


HW: Argumentative essay final draft.






Final Exam

October 2015


Antonela PERO