English Department Writing Center

English II

Writing Center: English II


Objectives for the English II Grammar and Composition Program

I. Grammar
In Modern English in Action workbook, students review parts of the sentence, verbals, clauses, diagramming, usage of pronouns and verbs, and punctuation. Similar to English I, this six-week review in the beginning of the year serves as a foundation for writing future themes. Along with reinforcing sentence-building and editing skills, the grammar review provides the vocabulary of grammar and style that teachers use when evaluating their students’ writing. Though grammar fundamentals are still emphasized in this review, stylistic principles and editing skills are given more attention than in English I.

II. Composition
Students continue to develop their ability to write the five-paragraph expository theme. English II teachers expect more independent thinking and stronger analysis than in English I. In particular, students are expected to write stronger introductions and conclusions than in English I, along with developing sound body paragraphs using the assertion-proof method. Following much of the groundwork in English I, students should build a writing process using pre-writing, outlining, drafting, and editing skills. By the end of the year, students should have mastered the formal skills of outlining and formatting a well-revised theme according to the M.B.A. Theme Guidelines. The research paper is also taught, including methods of research and documentation, and ways to organize a lengthy essay.
Some instructors teach a memoir, personal essay, or narrative in addition to the major expository themes and the research paper. Since English II is a survey of American literature, students usually have the chance to write journals in the manner of Emerson and Thoreau, and poems in the style of such ground-breaking poets as Whitman, Dickinson, William Carlos Williams. As in English I, personal writing is seen as important to a young person’s development.

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