Grissom's Grammar and Composition

This blog is for any student writing papers for college, for current and former students in my Communications Cluster at Lindenwood University, and my students at St. Charles Community College.

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I write for myself, for the web, and for everyone who gets me. I've been on a fasting liquid diet, traveled to Europe, and raised 2 kids. And I'm directionally challenged - I get lost a lot.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Poets for Oral Presentations

I am posting the poets that have been claimed so far for oral presentations. Do not duplicate the presentation of anyone in your specfic class, and if you change your poet, please email me. Some of you from Tuesday may be doing poets listed for Monday; that's fine. Just don't do the same poet as someone in your own class. I will update these lists as necessary.

Monday - These poets have been claimed so far.
Sara Teasdale
William Blake
Alice Walker
Dudley Randall
Walt Whitman
Edwin Arlington Robinson
Robert Frost
Edgar Allen Poe

Tuesday - These poets have been claimed so far.
William Blake
Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Wendy Cope
Robert Frost
Emily Dickinson
Thomas Hardy
Dylan Thomas
Allen Ginsberg
Anne Sexton
Walt Whitman

Online Resources for Researching Literature

For research, first check out Lindenwood’s Literature databases. You will need to sign in for access to the databases. They are listed under the heading Humanities.

Next you can go to the companion site for our Literature book. It has study guides for each piece of literature. The names of the authors are alphabetized in groups, so you have to click on a group of names to find study questions on the stories. So to find questions for Kate Chopin, you have to click on Alexie-Erdrich because her name is located alphabetically between theirs, much like an encyclopedia. Most features don’t require registration, but for the quizzes and some other material you will need to register.

One section of the site explains the elements of short fiction and provides examples. This would be good to look at before our final exam.

Another part of the website explains different approaches to looking at literature – feminist, reader response, Marxist, and more.

Context explores how the life and times of the author influence their work. Examples are provided on the site for Young Goodman Brown, Girl, and The Story of an Hour.

Our book's website also has LitLinks, a list of web links related to specfic authors. Click on the author's name and you will find sites specific to that author.

Purdue’s Owl explains how to write about Literature, including choosing a topic for a paper and using MLA to document research.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Topics to Review for Research Writing Skills Test

Finding a Research Topic

If you were assigned another research paper, what steps would you take to find a topic to write about?

Evaluating Sources

How do you evaluate sources? What makes them good quality sources?

Formal Research Writing

Research writing is more formal than other types of writing. Explain some differences between informal essay writing and research writing.

Paraphrasing, Summarizing, and Quoting

You get sources into your paper using these three methods. Define each and explain why and how use them in a research paper.

Logos, Ethos, Pathos

These are three ways to persuade an audience. Define them and give examples.
Review three ways to argue.

Logical Fallacies

These are arguments with bad logic. They are often used because they fool people, but good sources won't have logical fallacies and you shouldn't use them in your own writing. Be familiar with at least 4 common fallacies.

Responding to the Other Side

You can acknowledge or refute the opposing side's arguments. How do you do this and why does it help persuade your audience?

Signal Phrases

Signal phrases introduce quotations into your paper, often by explaining what the source of evidence is or the name and qualifications of the expert you are quoting. Know how to use them and give an example.


Brackets and Ellipses
These are tools to help you handle quotations in a research paper. Ellipses allow you to leave out part of a quote, and brackets go around anything you added to a quotation to help your audience understand it. Know how and why to use [sic] also.

In-text Citations

These are citations used within your writing to show where source information came from. You either mention the source in your writing or add it in parenthesis at the end of the sentence. Give examples of in-text citations and show where the punctuation goes when using an in-text citation at the end of a sentence.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Class Reminder: Due the Week of November 6

This week the 2nd draft of the research paper is due. You won't be turning it in; instead you will peer review with each other and take it home.

We will also be doing the Oral Presentations on your research paper. Read the guidelines for the presentation under Assignment #9 in the handout "Major Assignments for Communications II."

We will also be working on individual writing issues like fragments and commas, so bring any papers I've marked for notes on what problems to work on in your writing.