Practical Thesis Planning Seminar

Course Description: 

The goal of this course is to develop your confidence and competence as a writer in an academic context. To this end, we will spend the year cultivating the skills necessary for writing well-organized, logically sound, and rhetorically effective papers. We will work on organizational strategies, stylistic finesse, revision techniques, analysis of source material, and conventions of citation and attribution. We will also focus on grammatical problems with the help of The Bedford Handbook and occasional quizzes.

Learning Outcomes: 

The course will help students to write essays with a strong, clear thesis, body paragraphs, transitions, and a conclusion. During the classes, a special emphasis will be given to improve critical reading skills. The course will also provide students with strategies for generating sound research proposals. The seminar will help students to develop revision strategies and methods that help them constructing more coherent arguments. During the classes, students will familiarize with various research tools, including electronic databases and reference management software. The course will also help students to avoid plagiarism.


Papers:  The secret to good writing is frequent writing.  Students will get in-class and take-home assignments related to the goals of this course, while incorporating writing assignments from other courses as well.

Grammatical and stylistic exercises: Occasional exercises from The Bedford Handbook will be assigned.  The exercises will focus on problem areas for native as well as non-native speakers.

Attendance: Attendance is mandatory

The  course is pass/fail.