English 105 at Carolina is a writing-across-the-disciplines course. Its function is to familiarize incoming students with the conventions of writing in different academic and professional disciplines to help them become more versatile writers. Because this is a writing course, students will learn to analyze rhetorical and stylistic conventions that govern professional and academic writing in the natural sciences, social sciences, and the humanities. In doing so, they will hopefully become more aware of how audience expectations and context influence their writing and give it shape and direction.


Like the image above, from Proust’s notebook, students will learn to discern and create meaning in a variety of contexts, by taking a genre that may at first seem strange, even backwards, and making it their own.

Students enrolled in English 105 will learn to:

  • use conventions, genres, and rhetoric practiced in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities
  • conduct research using a variety of academic databases and sources
  • understand how to use research as evidence in discipline-specific compositions
  • compose using written, oral, and multi-media modes
  • Learn reading, reviewing, and revision strategies to improve your own work and assist others in their writing.

Course Design:

The course will be organized around the following principles:

Student-centered: My instruction will emphasize process: how to read, write, analyze, interpret, understand, and create oral, written, or multimedia texts. My role in this class is not that of a traditional teacher who stands at the front of the room and lectures. Rather, I am someone who offers structure, motivation, support, perspective, and feedback as YOU engage with your classmates and the course projects. While I will ultimately take on the role of the judge at the end of the semester, my main focus is on empowering you to make decisions about your writing because that’s when you learn the most.


Workshop format: Classes will be taught using a workshop approach that emphasizes the role of learning by writing and promotes interactive, experiential learning. Each of you will become a member of a small working group. These groups will serve as writing groups, discussion groups, and smaller cohorts in the larger classroom community. We will be using Sakai (UNC’s online course management system) and the course WordPress site as forums for posting and responding to drafts in progress and as a communication system so that you can access the syllabus and daily homework assignments electronically.


Process-based approach: We will move through three units, each one containing short “feeder” assignments that build into one substantial unit project. The feeder assignments are generally designed to give you practice with a particular skill (such as finding potential grants or analyzing secondary sources), while the unit projects will ask you to synthesize primary and secondary research. Using a process-based approach, you will write multiple drafts, receive ongoing feedback from your peers and instructor, and participate in evaluating your own and others’ projects throughout the composition process.


The Syllabus can be downloaded here Engl105-Section 31 .