Fundamentals of Academic Writing focuses on formal academic writing for high school students new to Wilson Hill composition or LA4 students needing more confidence and practice. Students practice the trajectory of the writing process from prewriting, drafting, revising, and editing to final submission by mastering the skills of the first three canons of rhetoric: invention, arrangement, and elocution. Not only do students gain greater proficiency in the art of writing well-crafted sentences, coherent paragraphs, and well-structured analytical and argumentative essays, they also practice strategic reading, summarizing, paraphrasing, and embedding quotes. In addition, they learn to properly document both print and online sources using the MLA system. Students use both fiction and non-fiction sources to practice core reading strategies. These sources also provide the content for student writing assignments.
While a basic understanding of grammatical conventions is a course prerequisite, the class spends time clarifying and reviewing various grammatical conventions/usage for the sake of clearer writing.