Skip Navigation Bar
sky logo


assignments page
Discussion Board
Discussion Board
Instructor's Homepage


Download ENGL 100 AK syllabus as a PDF file.

English 100: Composition
Kababayan Program
T Th 8:10 - 9:25 am • Section AK • 1-202
Spring 2005
Instructor: Liza Erpelo Office Phone: (650) 358-6889 x 9588
E-mail: Office: 8-112
Web Page: Mailbox: 8-112
Office Hours: By appointment  




Writing: ENGL 836 or 400 or ENGL/READ 846 with a grade of C or better, or eligibility for ENGL 100 on approved college placement tests and other measures as necessary.

Reading: READ 836 with Credit or a grade of C or better, or ENGL 400 (taken at Skyline) with a grade of C or better, or ENGL/READ 846 with a grade of C or better, or eligibility for 400-level Reading courses on approved college Reading placement test, and other measures as necessary.

Transfer: UC; CSU (A2, A3). CAN ENGL 2. ENGL 100 + ENGL 110 = CAN ENGL SEQ A.

Course Description and Goals


Welcome! The Kababayan Program consists of several components: English, literature, and history courses with a focus on the Filipino/a experience in America, including this composition course; access to a supportive counselor and study skills instructor, Jeffrey Acidera; collaboration with a Filipino/a mentor; and outside activities that complement the mission of our program.

Whether you realize it or not, writing is a crucial component for success not only in college, but in life beyond the classroom, in the “real world.” In this course, you will build upon what you already know about writing, improve your revising and proofreading techniques with new processes and skills, and know what you still need to work on. What I require from you is your sincere effort, your dedication to the class itself and your fellow classmates, and, well — a lot of writing:

  • one initial writing sample
  • four out-of-class essay assignments
  • one group project
  • one in-class essay final
  • several “freewrites”
  • sentence and paragraph development exercises
  • other worksheets

We will also focus on the writing process, essay organization, argumentation, peer response groups, research and citation, and critical readings and discussions.

You will discover over the course of this semester that the work we do in this class is not only training in writing, but also training in thinking — looking at more than one side of an issue, seeing how ideas connect, and constructing logical arguments which support your beliefs. Upon successfully completing this class, you will write expository essays which effectively communicate your thoughts and ideas, read published texts, the texts of your peers, and your own written work with a critical eye, and begin to think differently about the world we live in.
Textbooks and Materials Needed


  1. Your “archive”: A system to keep all your work that has been turned in and graded, like a big binder. You will usually keep this at home.

  2. Your “current” binder/folder/notebook: A folder or binder you are currently working on and that you bring to class every day, which contains the materials we are using in class for that unit. Also have a wirebound notebook or notebook paper to take notes on.

  3. One folder with two pockets: When you turn in each final draft of an essay, you will also need to turn in this folder, which will include your rough draft, peer review sheets, and any homework you have completed for that unit.

  4. English 100 Course Reader and Workbook: Contains some of the readings, reference material, and homework exercises for this class. This will be available from the bookstore during the second or third week of instruction.

  5. Filipino Americans edited by Maria P.P. Root.

  6. Almost Americans: A Quest for Dignity by Patricia Justiniani McReynolds

  7. "Student Record Folder": Available from the bookstore.

Course Requirements


Essays: Proofreading | Late Essays | Revision | Plagiarism

Attendance/Participation: Conferences | Peer Review Days | Class Discussions/Readings

Homework and Lab Work: E-mailing Assignments | Quizzes and In-Class Work | Lab Work

Final Exam | Extra Credit | Special Accomodations


1. Essays (70%)

Essays will usually be between three and five pages. Expect an essay to be due approximately every three weeks; due dates are subject to change at the instructor’s discretion. All essays must be typed in black ink, double-spaced, on white 8.5” x 11” paper in a standard font — no exceptions. Margins should be 1” all around. I will provide a sample essay to show you the format conventions you should follow. When each essay is due, you will need to turn in a folder which includes two clean copies of the final draft, your peer review sheets, your rough draft, and any homework/worksheets we have done during that unit. You must turn in all of your essays in order to pass this class.

Please consider every piece of writing you do for this class to be “public property.” Part of becoming a good writer is learning to appreciate the ideas and criticisms of others, and in this course, our purpose is to come together as a writing community. Remember that you will often be expected to share your writing with others, so avoid writing about things that you may not be prepared to subject to public scrutiny, or things you feel so strongly about that you are unwilling to listen to perspectives other than your own. This does not mean that you are not entitled to an opinion but that you adopt positions responsibly, contemplating the possible effect on others.


Proofreading: This is a college-level course and requires careful proofreading. An essay with excessive proofreading errors on the first page will be returned ungraded for correction and will be counted as late. Feel free to mark up the final draft even after the essay is printed out; I’d rather get a marked-up final draft than a clean rough draft.

Late Essays: All essays, including revisions, are due at the beginning of class on the assigned date — any time after that time is considered late. You may turn in only one excused essay late in the semester, and “late” means by the next class meeting — for instance, if an essay was due on Tuesday, you can turn it in late on Thursday. Use the “late essay” coupon attached to the end of this syllabus. When papers come in late, I will still grade them, but may not be able to provide any written feedback on the essay itself. If you turn your essay in any later, you will be penalized one full letter grade for each class meeting that it is late; otherwise, your essay will be graded “pass/fail,” at the instructor’s discretion.

Revision: Revision is a significant step in the writing process that involves much more than mere proofreading. You may revise essays 2 and 3 for a better grade, regardless of your original grade; I especially urge you to revise any “not passing” (NP) papers. Essays 4 and 5 cannot be revised. You must schedule a revision conference with me for any paper you plan to revise; revisions are due one week after we meet. When you turn in your revision, include the original essay with feedback and please highlight the changes you made on your revision. Your revision grade will be averaged with the original grade, unless the revision grade is lower.

Plagiarism: At all colleges, plagiarism is unacceptable. Plagiarism refers to passing off another person’s ideas or words as your own, from copying someone else’s words or ideas without citing that source to having people write or excessively edit your essays for you. According to the Skyline College “Student Handbook,” plagiarism is:

  • Incorporating the ideas, words, sentences, paragraphs, or parts of another person's writing, without giving appropriate credit, and representing the product as your own work.
  • Representing another’s artistic/scholarly works (such as musical compositions, computer programs, photographs, paintings, drawings, or sculptures) as your own.
  • Submitting a paper purchased from a research or term paper service.

Any assignment that has been plagiarized will receive an “NC” (no credit) and we will meet to discuss your status in the course. You may also be required to meet with the Dean of Language Arts for disciplinary action.


2. Attendance/Participation (10%)

Because all the work we do in class is directly related to your writing development, it is crucial that you come to each class prepared and ready to participate. I will take roll at every class meeting. If you cannot make a particular class, call me to let me know. You will also need to call a classmate and be sure to get the homework assignment and any materials from him or her. You are responsible for all homework whether you’ve been in class or not. Missing more than three class meetings will affect your grade, and missing more than six class meetings is unacceptable and will result in a failing grade for attendance, participation, and homework. While you are in the classroom, please turn off all cellular telephones, pagers, Walkmans, etc. before class begins. It is disrespectful to me and to your classmates.



To keep your spot in this class, you must attend all class meetings during the first two weeks. If you are absent without notifying me during this time, you will be dropped from the class.


I expect all of us to get started on time and not be interrupted by late arrivals which invariably produce distracting paper shuffling and repeated directions/conversation. We will use the entire class period — from 8:10 to 9:25 am. Three “late arrivals” (defined either as coming in after I take roll or more than 10 minutes into the class) will be considered an absence; early departures carry the same consequences. Both will count toward the maximum of six absences permitted.


Conferences are a major part of this class. They provide opportunities for us to work together on your growth as a writer. Please keep your appointments with me; if you have to miss a conference with me, call me ahead of time to let me know.

  • Introductory Conference: I will hold a short conference with each of you within the first two weeks of class to go over your first essay and talk about what you would like to accomplish this semester.
  • Revision Conferences: Any time you would like to revise an essay, you will need to schedule a conference with me first. You must come prepared for the discussion — read my comments carefully and be ready to tell me specific ideas you have for revising the essay based on my comments.


Peer Review Days
On peer review days, you and two of your peers will get together and read each other’s essays and comment on them. These workshops are here to help you, by providing feedback from your readers and allowing you to reread and rethink about your work. You will need to bring three copies of your draft to class on these days. Your essay must be a “good-faith draft”: it should be at least two pages long and shows careful thought and planning even though it may be unfinished. You may miss one peer review day without penalty; use the “missed peer review day” coupon at the end of the syllabus. If you do not attend a workshop for a given paper, your final grade for that paper will drop by one grade.


Class Discussion/Readings
Many times in class discussion, it becomes fairly obvious who has done the reading and who has not, who is willing to speak their minds and who chooses to disengage; get your words out there. Convince me that you are prepared for class, have thought about these ideas, and are ready to participate.


3. Homework and Lab Work (10%)
Homework consists of sentence or paragraph exercises, worksheets, freewrites, and any other assignments. We will go over homework in class the day after it is assigned; I expect everyone to have completed the homework before coming to class. Homework is a large part of your responsibility as a student and will greatly affect how much you learn in this class. Each homework assignment is worth three points. Late homework will be accepted by the next class period and carries a point penalty.

Points Meaning
3 points excellent work
2 points good work
1 point incomplete or needs improvement
0 points turned in late
-1 point not turned in



Submitting Assignments by E-mail: I will only accept homework electronically if you are absent on the day that the work is due or if we have made previous arrangements; otherwise, your work will be considered late. Keep in mind, however, that if you e-mail me your homework, you do so at your own risk and I cannot guarantee that I will receive it on time. Please send your work in Microsoft Word format (.doc) or in rich text format (.rtf) as an attachment. NOTE: I do not accept essay assignments via e-mail.


Quizzes and In-Class Work: You may not make up a missed quiz or in-class activities; you lose points entirely.


Lab Work
A required activity for English 100 is 16 hours of lab time during which you work on assigned activities in The Learning Center or attend other workshops and events on campus. During this time you may work on the following types of activities:

  • Tutoring with an instructional aide on homework assignments for English 100.
  • Work on, a computerized reading program, in The Learning Center.
  • Work in text materials in The Learning Center to develop specific skills, such as vocabulary development, main idea, notetaking, textbook reading, etc.
  • Work in text materials in The Learning Center to more generally practice comprehension.
  • Attend instructor-approved campus events, such as Learning Center or Writing and Reading Lab workshops, poetry readings, plays, lectures, etc. Proof of attendance is required with either a signed attendance slip or a written one-page summary/reaction paper of the event.
  • Participate in any of the other activities described inside the “Student Record Folder.”

You must purchase a “Student Record Folder” to document your lab attendance. I will collect your lab folder from time to time to check on your progress. Your lab work will count towards your homework grade, with each lab hour worth 6 points, for a total possible 100 points.

If you are doing your lab work in The Learning Center, you may schedule the lab hours for your convenience. The Writing and Reading Lab in the Learning Center is open as follows:

Monday - Thursday 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
Friday 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
Saturday 10:00 am - 2:00 pm

Any hours in excess of your required 16 hours (up to 10 hours) for the semester can be counted as extra credit (3 points per extra hour) towards your homework grade.


4. Final Exam (10%)
The final exam is scheduled for Thursday, May 26 from 8:10 – 10:40 am. The final is required to pass the course. Please do not take the course if you cannot take the final at the scheduled time; no finals will be given early.


Extra Credit: Options will be offered throughout the semester at the instructor’s discretion.


Special Accommodations: In coordination with the DSPS office, reasonable accommodation will be provided for eligible students with disabilities. If you do not yet have an accommodation letter, please contact the DSPS office at (650) 738-4280.

Important Dates


Last day to ADD Monday, January 31
Last day to DROP without appearing on record Friday, February 11
Last day to WITHDRAW (“W”) Friday, April 22



Declared Recess Friday, February 18 – Monday, February 21
Spring Recess Monday, March 21 – Sunday, March 27


Grading Policy


This course is graded A-B-C-D-F with no plus or minus grades. You may choose to take the class Credit/No Credit, but you will need to sign up for this option with me. Grades are assigned as follows:

A or Credit:   90-100% average on tests and assignments
B or Credit:   80-89% average on tests and assignments
C or Credit:   70-79% average on tests and assignments
D or No Credit:   60-69% average on tests and assignments
F or No Credit:   below 60% average on tests and assignments
W (Withdrawal):   a requested grade which can be assigned only if requested before April 22, 2005. Use college withdrawal procedures.

Note that the "W" is a requested grade. A "W" will not be assigned unless you follow the official college WITHDRAWAL procedures. If you wish to drop this class, you must initiate the process using the SMART system. Students will not be automatically dropped for missing class. If you simply disappear from class without going through the withdrawal process, you will receive whatever letter grade you deserve at the end of the semester, most likely an “F.”

Essays are graded A-B-C-NP (Not Passing). Unsubmitted or late work will earn a NC (No Credit) grade. I will be handing out a detailed grading criteria sheet that will help you understand what I and the department regard as excellent work (A), good work (B), adequate work (C), and not-passing work (NP). You must turn in all of your essays in order to pass this class.

Don’t expect to get excellent grades on your first essays — this class is here to coach you towards more complex and sophisticated writing, not to simply validate what you already know how to do. And don’t despair — writing is difficult, and English 100 can hardly teach you everything there is to know. We will work together to strengthen your skills and confidence. Your attendance, participation in class, and homework will all contribute to your overall grade, but your essays compose the bulk of your grade, 60%. If you are on a borderline between grades, an overall upward trend in your essay grades will help you.

This course is graded A-B-C-D-F with no plus or minus grades. You may choose to take the class Credit/No Credit, but you will need to sign up for this option with me by the fifth week of the semester.

Final Notes


  • Always make and keep a copy of your essay for your records before you turn it in.
  • Save all essays and homework until the end of the semester.
  • Exchange phone numbers/e-mail addresses with at least two of your classmates so that you can contact them for assignments if you are absent.
  • This class is often in high demand — if you miss the second class meeting without notifying me or if you do not submit the required first essay, student information sheet, and syllabus contract on time, you will lose your spot in this class.
  • Always see me any time you have questions or concerns.
  • Come to class prepared, but come to class even if you aren’t.
  • Finally, although writing is, mechanically speaking, an isolated activity, it is conceptually and emotionally an attempt to enter into discussion with others. My hope is that you will find this class energizing and helpful to you as writers. I look forward to working with you!
Please note that the above schedules and procedures in the course are subject to change in the event of extenuating circumstances.