Pre-English 111 Outlook
Before this class, I felt as if I did not need to try that hard and that I would not learn that much because I had taken English 313 the prior semester. As an engineer, most writing is done in lab reports, for which I have had lots of practice. I was thinking of this class as a joke and as one I will not learn anything from. I knew I was not a skilled writer, but I was okay with that because I have chosen a career with minimal writing.
I gained multiple useful skills throughout the class, however the two most important ones have been organization and effectiveness.
I knew going in that my organization skills in writing had a lot of room to improve and after four inquiries, my organization improved greatly. My initial problem was that I would keep writing my thoughts as I progressed through the paper, rather than outlining them first and then writing them out. I tended to ramble on without keeping a common theme throughout my paragraph or overall essay. I learned that I need to slow down and to create a concrete thesis and introduction, which should bring in any topics or points I will be touching on. If I mention a certain side to a topic in my introduction, I need to explain it later on in the paper. After the three inquiries, I came to the realization that each essay had a peer response mentioning the fact that I introduced a topic, but failed to talk of it in my essay. This was an obvious problem that needed to be fixed, and was one that slowly improved throughout my time in English 111.
Effectiveness and clarity of one's writing is as important as organization. An idea can only carry someone so far, however, if their idea is not presented clearly, it will not reach the audience the way it should. Throughout these inquiries, effectiveness has been an important factor because with the analysis of the speech and argument paper, the thesis had to be presented outright and explained in full.
I failed to complete this in the analysis of the speech, but with my argument paper about energy and the website, I felt as if my effectiveness improved greatly. A portion of this improvement is due to the organization, but the ability to be more creative in the last two inquiries allowed me to present my ideas in a way that captures the reader's attention with entertainment, as well as clarity. Presenting ideas with a purpose and in an efficient way improved the effectiveness of my writing and in the end, left the reader feeling informed, yet wanting more.
After writing an argument paper about the Renewable Energy industry and the affect of the coal industry, I was excited to create a website about a topic I am so passionate about. The first three inquiries seemed to be work to me, but this was a project that I enjoyed and felt confident about. This website showcased all of the skills I learned in English 111.
My organization skills came to full life with this website. In my essay about this topic, I compared the sides of the argument such as health, environment, and politics, and with a website, the organization seemed pretty clear. I created a separate page for each side of the argument, with a "Welcome Home Page" that introduced the topic, while also setting the tone for the website. I chose to go with a sarcastic route for the site because this let me be creative, while also presenting information in an effective way.
A link to the Coal Industry website is provided above, and if you read through it, I am confident that my message regarding the negative effects of the coal industry will get through to you in an educational and entertaining manner.