Jana Shepard ©2020

Dillard has started a “conversation” with her essay. We have spent considerable time “listening to her” by reading her essay, engaging in the discussion questions, reading my lecture notes, thinking about what she wrote, etc.

Now, for your essay, it is your turn to “step into the conversation” and add something to it. You have a wide latitude about what you write about as long as it ties in with the main idea(s) from Dillard’s essay.

Think of the essay by Dillard as a source you will use to help support your thesis. I expect you to cite brief passages from Dillard’s essay to help establish the context for your essay. But, keep in mind that your essay is not simply a summary of Dillard’s essay.

Before your begin writing your essay: • Reread Dillard’s essay. Annotate, take notes, and ask questions as you read.

• Review the discussion postings. You can’t copy/paste material from your classmates’ postings as this would be plagiarism. You may, however, see a pattern with the ideas presented which will help you explore your own ideas.

• It is important that clearly understand the main point (thesis) of Dillard’s essay. This is a crucial first step in the writing of your own essay. You must understand the point that Dillard is making before you can make a point of your own that relates to and expands upon Dillard’s essay.

Begin writing your essay Once you know what Dillard’s thesis (argument) is, you are ready to step into the conversation and add another facet to the “conversation” that Dillard has started.

Brainstorm ideas for your thesis. Then do some research to find one or more additional sources that help support the claim (thesis) you will be making in your essay.

Engl 1101 Mid-Term Essay Assignment 1



Jana Shepard ©2020

Mid-term Essay Requirements and Grading Rubric

• Formal writing style, no mechanical or grammatical errors • A thesis that is clear and focused • Thesis is supported with evidence from the sources—in this case, the essay by Dillard and one or more additional sources • MLA conventions for formatting, in-text citations and Works Cited page • Quotations, paraphrases, and summaries are synthesized into your essay with proper MLA format • An appropriate and consistent point-of-view • 750 to 1000 words not counting quoted material • Times New Roman 12 point font, double-spaced

Length: 750 – 1000 words (not counting quoted material and Works Cited entries)

Yes (continue with grading) No (stop grading—0%)

Good Attempted but lacking

development Missing or not


Works Cited entries for all sources 4 2 0 Student’s thesis is clear and focused and is supported

with evidence from sources 5 2 0 Quotations, paraphrases and summaries of the sources

are synthesized into the student’s argument using proper MLA format 5 2 0

Sentences are strong, clear, and direct; text can be read quickly without any confusion; sentences vary in length; few, if any, bloated sentences or excessive metadiscourse 4 2 0

Paragraphs contain clear topic sentences and demonstrate a coherent flow of thoughts 4 2 0

Proper mechanics, grammar, appropriate word choice 4 2 0

Essay is written in an appropriate and consistent point- of-view 4 2 0

Plagiarism of any form will result in an F for this paper.

Engl 1101 Mid-Term Essay Assignment 2

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